Does Your Website Design Affect Conversion Rates? (Hint: YES!)
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Did you know that 94% of your customers will decide to buy based on their first impressions of your website?
Three-quarters of a site’s credibility comes from its design. Almost ninety percent of people choose a competitor when faced with a poor user experience. Yet many sites still offer unattractive, ineffective, slow, and broken content and expect it to bring in business.
This article examines how website design affects conversion rates.
We explain the firm link between digital marketing and web design. We then explore conversion rate optimization. And how the best website designs increase performance.
Read on to discover how to design a website that increases traffic then converts those visitors into paying customers.
What Are Conversion Rates?
Conversion rates measure the percentage of website visitors who take a desired action.
This typically means calculating the number of customers who purchase a product or service against the total number of users. It could also express the percentage of people who submitted a contact form. Or who engaged in an online sales chat.
For example, the conversion rate of a site that attracts 10,000 users were 200 purchased something is 2%.
Defining Users and Conversions
The burst of the dot-com bubble in the late 90s happened largely because of one false statistical term – total hits.
In the minds of investors, total hits meant total website visitors. In reality, hits included the number of images downloaded and pages viewed. One site visit could equal hundreds of hits.
Today, most site owners recognize the difference yet terms are still not clearly defined.
Here are three common conversion measurement terms and their meanings:
- Unique visits – one visit within a given period
- User visits – multiple returns to the same site
- Conversion events – the agreed act of conversion
An example of a conversion event is an addition to a shopping cart versus fully committing to a purchase.
Whatever definitions you choose, make sure to keep them consistent. Don’t compare monthly conversion rates using different user types or you’ll create a false baseline.
Conversion Rate Statistics
Last year, the mean average website conversion rate for e-commerce sites in the US stood at 2.63%.
That figure was substantially less than the global average rate of 4.31%. Yet figures vary by industry type and the platform used to visit the website.
Desktop browsers convert higher than mobile users on average. Tablets offer a considerably higher rate than mobiles too but not as big as desktops.
Non-e-commerce sites like lead generators see an average rate of 13% conversions with a high of 28%. Fremium product companies like Slack see huge conversion rates of up to 30%.
One key statistic that these figures hinge on is how long the visitor remains on the site.
The more time they stay the more likely they are to convert. And the main ingredient to customer retention is the state of website design and the experience it offers.
How the Best Website Designs Affects Conversions
There is a direct link between website design and digital marketing conversion rates.
In order for sites to convert, they must attract traffic. That comes from sources like search engines, adverts, in-store promotions, direct links, etc.
Once a visitor arrives they need to find the site appealing and engaging enough to remain. Content should match their expectations and hook them enough to consume more.
The sales funnel should be obvious and simple to follow with logical steps and offer a clear conclusion. The site must be able to record all interactions including where the user came from and what they did.
Failure to provide any of these will result in poor visitor retention and ultimately a low conversion rate.
Search Engine Optimization
An essential part in attracting new traffic is through Google Search.
Google remains the world’s largest search engine. Its Google Ads platform lets website owners market their sites through a pay-per-click system. Yet its organic search results provide a long-term means to advertise a website more cost-effectively.
SEO means ensuring your website conforms to Google’s guidelines and expectations.
The goal is to provide an excellent user experience (UX) so visitors enjoy using your site and will come back in the future. As those numbers grow, you’ll see your conversion rates soar.
Website Design Conversion Rate Tips
To help identify solid SEO methods and high-converting techniques, we’ve outlined 7 tips below.
Each guarantee to provide a better UX. And a happy customer will be more likely to put their trust in your brand. Trust will then lead to a sale or form submission which in turn will increase conversions.
1. Responsive Website Design
Responsive web design is Google’s recommended way to build websites for all platforms and screen sizes.
Traditional web design offered a static or fixed layout which looked great on large screens. Yet when mobile went mainstream, those designs couldn’t fit a smaller viewport. That meant users had to pinch and zoom to read content which isn’t ideal.
A responsive page organizes content to fit the user’s device.
Information ‘responds’ to the width of the screen, moving elements to where they have the most impact. Navigation links no longer stretch across the page. They’re hidden until needed and accessed in a familiar way.
MWD Web Design is a huge supporter of responsive websites and ensures to include them in our custom WordPress themes.
2. Clear CTAs
A call to action or CTA is a marketing signal that you want your visitors to take action on.
A typical example is a link that says ‘visit our product catalog here’. Or a button icon linking to your social media pages.
Every page on your site should offer a clear call to action i.e. have a reason to exist.
Landing pages should link to further information on that particular topic. Product pages should include an easy way to add the item to the cart. Blog articles need to end with a CTA that relates to the piece.
Review your existing content and check to see if there is a clear action for your customers to follow.
3. Fast Hosting
Another SEO essential in 2021 is speed. That includes how fast your pages load and become interactive.
If you currently have a website, how long does it take for a page to download and appear on your visitor’s browser? If the answer is anything above 2.5 seconds then you’re in danger of Google marking that page down.
Core Web Vitals is the search engine giant’s latest quality control and speed lies at its heart. Therefore, make sure to host your site on fast and secure servers that deliver every time.
4. Consistent Branding
Building trust brings higher conversion rates and that means building your brand through your site.
Consistent use of color schemes, logo placement, and layouts give off a professional image. A sloppy, home-grown effort gives off the wrong vibe. That process begins with a great logo.
MWD has designed custom logos for our clients since 2006. Each is unique and reflects the client’s personality and mission.
5. Visually Pleasing Graphic Design Websites
Tied with branding is the use of visually pleasing graphics.
Shoddy product photos that are blurred and dark won’t work. Investing in the right pictures promotes a professional image and inspires confidence.
For WordPress sites, that includes installing custom themes.
Off-the-shelf templates may sound cost-effective but they don’t reflect your company ethos. Be sure to do your brand proud and always choose a custom option.
6. Clear Navigation
A major reason why visitors quickly leave a site is that they get confused.
Navigational links make little sense or don’t exist at all. If customers want to contact the company but there’s no link they’ll go elsewhere. Products that have no obvious categorization make users believe there is only one item for sale.
All of these issues are easily solved through a clear and consistent navigation structure. Not only will that help your visitors but Google loves sites with simple and obvious links.
7. SEO Optimized Content
Writing search engine optimized content for a website requires careful research and a sound structure.
At MWD we recognize how essential it is to produce excellent copy.
Our SEO services include this as standard because Google ranks high-quality content pages. We research the keywords that your visitors use then build text and images around them.
Always make sure your site includes content fit for users and Google alike. Those pages will attract organic traffic which in turn will convert to sales.
Custom WordPress Web Sites
At MWD Web Design, we encourage our clients to use WordPress as their website content management system.
WordPress has SEO built into its core. Web page addresses match Google’s expectations and sites offer an excellent user experience.
As a responsive website design company, we know the value of mobile-friendly sites and their impact on conversions. Our custom themes ensure that our clients market their brand with a unique voice online.
That includes promoting a visually pleasing site with clear and simple navigation.
A Website Design Company That Converts
Anyone can design a website.
Free website design tools and WordPress themes can set up your site within minutes. You can add content and images and open your digital doors to the world.
But don’t expect many visitors to come and certainly don’t expect them to convert.
MWD Web Design specializes in building SEO-optimized web sites that convert targeted traffic.
Our customized WordPress sites are built with Google in mind. They’re fully responsive, mobile-friendly, and rank well for our customers’ keywords. The sites offer excellent UX and provide the perfect sales funnel for high conversion rates.
Contact us today to learn how MWD Web Design can bring you more business.
With fast and reliable hosting solutions and SEO plans, we can attract more traffic to your site. Then we’ll help you to turn them into repeat customers.