If you want to improve your bounce rate, these 16 web design tips are for you!
If you are getting consistent website traffic but struggling to turn those visitors into customers, the problem may be your bounce rate. Bounce rate refers to the rate at which website visitors “bounce off” before converting. Your website should be the most important component of your digital marketing strategy. Therefore, a poor bounce rate can make all your other marketing efforts obsolete!
A number of web design issues can lead to a high bounce rate, including confusing website layouts, outdated aesthetics, or even just slow load times. We will address all of these issues and more so you can optimize your website to improve your bounce rate and maximize your conversions!
If you like the following web design tips, consider hiring one of our website design experts to make these changes for you! We have a proven track record as the #1 Atlanta web design service provider.
If you want to improve your bounce rate, let us help you with these 16 web design tips:
1. Declutter your site for faster load times.
The first of our web design tips to massively improve your bounce rate is to speed up your site’s load time.
Let’s face it: we’ve all been there. Everyone has clicked off of a website in frustration because it just didn’t load fast enough. Sometimes we do this after a delay of just a few seconds. Ideally, your website should load within three seconds. Otherwise, you could be losing valuable customers!
The following web design tips can speed up your site’s load time and decrease your bounce rate:
- Truncate image files: images take up a lot of bandwidth, so one of the simplest ways to improve your website’s load time is to optimize your image sizes. In many cases, you can make image files smaller so that they consume less bandwidth without actually impacting the way the images appear on your site at all.
- Get rid of any plugins you do not use or need: every time someone clicks onto your website, it has to load all of your plugins. Having too many plugins can drastically slow down your load speed. We recommend removing or deactivating all plugins that are not 100% necessary.
- Use a web host that works for you: not all web hosts are the same. If your web host is slowing down your site, switch to a new one that can promise faster load times! It isn’t a good idea just to go with the most affordable web host since you can be losing a lot of money in the long run with a slow website. A quality web host is definitely a worthwhile investment!
Studies show that even a one second delay in page load time can lead to 11% fewer page views, a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction, and 7% loss in conversions!
Likewise, 64% of online shoppers claim that they will take their business elsewhere if an online store doesn’t load quickly enough. Improving your website’s load speed is one of the best and easiest web design tips to decrease your bounce rate.
2. Optimize your site for conversions.
When you optimize your website for conversions, you make it as simple as possible for visitors to get from your homepage to the thank you page. Any confusion along the way could tempt your future customers to click off of your website. We know you don’t want that!
Mapping out the user journey from the homepage to the end point of your main conversion goal can do wonders for improving your bounce rate. Test it out yourself, and enlist the help of others to make sure getting from point A to point B is as simple and clear as possible.
Some web design tips that can help optimize your site for conversions are to make primary conversion points big, bold, and above the fold. Of course, there is no actual “fold” on a web page, but “above the fold” refers to the area of the screen users do not have to scroll down to get to.
Conversion buttons should also have a very clear call to action. For example “shop now,” “add to cart,” or “contact us,” are great calls to action. Calls to action that are too vague or abstract are never a good choice.
Ideally, your website visitors should have to click as few times as possible to get what they want out of your website. If you have an ecommerce store, make it as seamless as possible for users to get from your homepage to their shopping cart.
If you’re providing a service and want more leads, make sure your lead box is the easiest thing to find on your website.
3. Use a visual hierarchy.
The idea of enhancing your website with an effective visual hierarchy goes hand in hand with the above point about optimizing your site for conversions. One of the more important web design tips we could give is to make sure the most important features of your website are also the most eye-catching.
The use of bold fonts, large text sizes, and bright colors can help create a visual hierarchy, showing website visitors through the use of clear visual cues what is more important and what is less important on your website.
Want an easy test to figure out if your visual hierarchy is effective? Try the squint test!
Step back from your computer screen and squint so the whole page is a blur. The only noticeable features will be the largest, boldest, and most colorful areas of the screen. Are those areas the ones you want people focusing on? If you answered yes, you’re on the right track!
4. Include social share buttons.
Do you have a blog on your website? Are there social share buttons on every blog? If not, the following web design tips are for you!
Every blog post on your website should feature buttons in the corner allowing readers to easily share your blogs on social media without having to leave your website. Thispromotes brand awareness without contributing to your bounce rate. After all, you don’t want a reader to be so impressed with your blog that they click off your website to share a post and don’t actually end up converting!
Having social share buttons also has the added benefit of reminding users they can share your blogs, encouraging people who might not have thought of it otherwise. The more links on social media sending people back to your website the better!
5. Use colors effectively.
People can’t read what they can’t see. And they won’t read what they can barely see either. Always make sure the text on your website is in a color that contrasts from the background. There is a reason 99% of books have black text on white paper. It’s easy to read.
Playing around with color is fine, and highly recommended, but make sure the colors you are using make sense together. No one wants to read a bright blue font on a lime green background because there is not enough contrast and the text will be hard to read. Likewise, that same lime green background will not go well with a hot pink font; that is simply too much contrast and can strain users’ eyes. Stick with colors that compliment each other well and contrast just enough to make readability a breeze.
6. Stick with sans serif.
Serif fonts are fonts that have small flourishes at the ends of their letters, like Times New Roman. Sans serif fonts are fonts like Helvetica and Arial that do not have these flourishes. When it comes to website design, it’s usually best to use sans serif fonts since they tend to be easier to read.
Serif fonts can be fun and more ornamental, but they should only be used for headlines or branding, if at all. Body text should always be sans serif to improve the readability of your website. If your content is easier to read, people will stay on your site longer and improve your time on site metrics.
On the subject of fonts, another one of our best web design tips is to limit your entire site to just two or three different typefaces. Too many different fonts can come off as confusing, disjointed, or even downright messy.
7. Include an FAQ.
Having a page on your website devoted to answering frequently asked questions can provide a lot of value for your visitors. If they have a burning question, the FAQ is probably the first place they will look. If you don’t have an FAQ page, or if they can’t find the question they are looking for, they might become frustrated and exit your site. It’s a good idea to not only have an FAQ page but also to update it regularly as new questions about your brand arise.
In addition to providing value to your website visitors, FAQ pages can also improve search engine rankings and help streamline site navigation!
8. Utilize white space.
White space, also known as negative space, refers to the blank areas of a web page in between text and images. It may not seem like much, but white space is actually anincredibly important design feature. Effective use of white space can make a huge difference in terms of the readability of your website.
If your website is cluttered with too much multimedia, users can be distracted from main conversion points and more likely to exit your site without carrying out your desired call to action. Streamlining your site with white space can do wonders to improve your bounce rate.
9. Use unique, eye-catching images.
While white space is vital and too many images on a website can distract or overwhelm people, you should take some time to upgrade the quality of the images you do have on your website. It will be worth it in the long run to invest in high-quality product photography. Blurry or low-resolution photos can come off as unprofessional and may ruin your chances of gaining a valuable customer. If you don’t have custom images, don’t worry. Stock photography has come a long way and many modern free stock images are not as cheesy as they used to be.
Decorating your website with a few high-quality images is a significantly better method than loading it up with dozens of low-quality images.
10. Include a contact page.
Many business owners squeeze their contact information into the footer of their website without putting much thought into it. That’s a big mistake! Your contact page is actually one of the most important pages on your entire website.
The contact page is how potential customers can get in touch with you if they have a question that is not answered on your website. If they cannot easily find a way to contact you from your site, they may be more likely to go to a competitor’s website instead.
Make sure your contact page is more than just a list of information or a contact form. You should use this page as an opportunity to explain to visitors why they should contact you and how you can help them. You should also include as many different types of contact information as possible. Everyone has their preferences, so only listing a phone number may turn some people away.
11. Make your layout responsive.
In this day and age, more than half of all website traffic comes from mobile devices. That percentage is only expected to rise as mobile devices become more and more prevalent. If your website layout is not responsive, you’re missing out on a huge percentage of the market!
You should never have to wonder what mobile website visitors see when they’re on the go. Using a responsive layout for your website ensures the layout will automatically adjust for the device it is being viewed from.
If your website layout is not responsive, mobile visitors are likely to have a higher bounce rate since the site they see could be jumbled, cut off, or just simply unappealing.
12. Add a blog.
If you’re looking for more web design tips about what you should and should not include on your site, this one’s for you! A blog is not necessary for all websites, but if you don’t have one, you should strongly consider it. Not only do frequent blog postsboost your SEO opportunities, they also provide a great deal of value to your website visitors and can help improve your bounce rate.
Just make sure the content on your blog is relevant to your target audience and is of high quality. Frequent blog posts that resonate well with your visitors will inspire confidence in your brand and establish you as more of a leader in your field, making people more likely to return to your website, linger longer, and ultimately become customers! Blogs are also easily shared on social media, boosting your chances of going viral and increasing website traffic.
Interested in adding a blog to your site or starting your old blog back up again? Consider the help of an outside resource like our content marketing agency. We’d love to help you expand your reach to more customers!
13. Simplify navigation.
Few things make website visitors flee faster than a complicated navigation system. Some good web design tips to improve the navigation of your site are to utilize menu bars, have a button people can use to click back to your homepage from any other page and to have an informative footer.
Your website’s menu bar should ideally be horizontal across the top of each page. It can include links to any important pages including specific product pages, a contact page, an FAQ, or even testimonials.
If you have a large number of different pages on your site, you can organize them with drop-down lists that pop up when someone scrolls over one of the main categories of your menu bar. For example, if you sell sports attire, your menu bar may have a page for shoes, jerseys, and equipment, but when somebody scrolls over “shoes,” a vertical list can show up with links to pages for different brands, colors, sizes, or styles.
Just be careful not to include too many options on your menu bar. Overwhelming users with too many choices can actually have the opposite impact from what you originally intended. They may become confused and decide to exit your website altogether.
A common website practice that we definitely recommend is to have your company’s logo visible in the top left corner of every page. The logo should be clickable and link back to the homepage so users can easily return there no matter where they end up on your site.
Footers tend to be the last thing people see on your site, so you should include a few important links at the bottom of each page including contact information and buttons that link out to your social media sites. Oftentimes, people will scroll straight to the bottom of a page in search of these particular items.
Below is an example of an effective footer which features the company’s logo, an abridged company description and list of services, links to recent blog posts and the careers page, as well as a contact form and the company’s address, phone number, and fax number.
Another of our web design tips on the subject of navigation is to include a search bar at the top of each page. This allows people to navigate your website quickly and find exactly what they are looking for. Someone with a very specific goal in mind when visiting your site could be tempted to bounce if they can’t easily find what they are looking for. A search bar quickly and easily mitigates this issue.
14. Use infographics.
Large blocks of text tend to overwhelm website visitors. So what do you do when you have a lot of information to convey but not a lot of space for it? That’s where infographics come in! Organizing your website information onto concise and easy to ready infographics can keep your webpage informative and captivating at the same time.
A compelling infographic can keep a visitor on your website while conveying the same information as several paragraphs that might have sent them packing.
The infographic below is a great example of how to effectively display a large amount of information without relying too heavily on text. The images and text are combined in a creative and concise way to teach viewers valuable insight about cancer.
15. Include testimonials or reviews.
You want people to trust you, right? The quickest way to build people’s trust in your brand is to include real, honest reviews or testimonials from previous or current customers directly on your website.
Nearly 90% of online shoppers report reading reviews before making a purchasing decision. You don’t want potential customers clicking off of your site to find reviews elsewhere. To keep your visitors where you want them (on your website) include reviews either on corresponding product pages or on a separate review page that is easy to find and navigate.
All the above web design tips are general recommendations based on best practices that tend to work across most industries. However, every business is different and you can never be certain what will work best for yours until you test things out!
In the world of website design, things move quickly. Remember to be continuously optimizing your site and updating it based on changes in the field. You should also check your website regularly to make sure everything is running smoothly and there are no bugs. It may help to have a friend or colleague review the site for you.
You should also be using tools like Google Analytics to make the necessary adjustments to your website and make data-informed decisions. You can even review heat maps to see how people are navigating your website to pinpoint any areas where the layout may not be clear or easy to follow.