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How Can Bad UX Influence Your Conversion Funnel?

November 20th, 2018 Conversion Funnel Source: Shengjun Shi

Regardless of whether you sell a product, offer a service or run a blog, any visitor comes to your site with simple goals like consuming or gathering more information. The user experience is the foundation of everything from that point on, and the main pillar of your conversion strategy.

About Conversion Funnels

Let’s say you do your best to make your target audience aware of you: you experiment with search engine optimization, social media, PPC etc. If you do this well, you will get the visitors to start the conversion journey. However, if you want more people to reach the other end of the funnel, the user journey must be consistent and reflect your goals. This is where a good UX comes into the spotlight. If you fail to deliver the user’s expectations, chances are you’re going to get leaks out of your funnel. There’s nothing worse than a confused or disappointed visitor, who can’t find what he/she’s looking for. When a faulty UX strategy blocks the users’ journey midway; most of the targeted users drop out and leave your site unsatisfied and without spending a single dollar. The after effects can be also devastating since this is often followed by negative word of mouth. In these cases, the resources invested in search engine optimization and marketing are also wasted, with a low return rate.

The good news is, that by following some simple UX rules, you can not only prevent such events from happening but also boost your conversion rates like never before. For example, you could use an advanced analytics tool, such as Capturly, to identify where you may have a problem (ex; high bounce rate on your homepage) and a state of the art user testing platform like Userlytics to understand what is going on (ex: homepage doesn't have a clear purpose), and why. With this key information you can design a few alternatives that fix the problems you identified by using Capturly and Userlytics (ex: more clear value proposition or introduction video). Finally, you can utilize Google Optimize to A/B test those new alternative designs to ensure you're making progress.

“A hard-to-use website is like a hole in the middle of your conversion funnel.”

One of the main characteristics of a modern website visitor is that they are ready to register, subscribe to your newsletter or open their wallet ONLY after they’ve have checked your website. A survey of the Digital Influence Index reveals that close to 90% of consumers make a thorough search before making their decision. In order for you to persuade your potential buyers, an excellent user experience is imperative.

So what to look for when creating a positive user experience is your goal?

1) Outdated Typography

Typography Source: Alexander Andrews

When choosing fonts, there are often two basic "problems". The first case is when the owner/designer of the website ignores the importance of typography. This is where Arial, Impact, and others appear. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with these fonts. There there are literally thousands of other options to choose from that add a unique feel to your website. The second case is the opposite of the first one. Using too many different fonts in uncoordinated ways will result in chaos and be misleading to the site visitor. If each font has its own well thought out purpose, you have taken the first step to create a clear user experience. You can also use a particular font to provide information in a variety of ways depending on how you use the colors or the thickness you apply in that context. You can choose to use a custom font set, but be careful about compatibility for different browsers and devices.

2) Poor Accessibility

Worth noting that not only colors can distinguish the different segments of the webpage. The use of contrasts and emotions is becoming widespread when designing the user experience. They are great tools for grabbing attention, as they help website visitors to deepen in the context. About contrast, it is worth noting that you can achieve a convincing user experience with not only contrasting colors. The fonts mentioned above play a great part in it. Web design also gives you other ways to build contrast, by varying the size of each and every element on your website. In other words, some elements should be larger than the rest. This version of contrasting has a very important role when it is not possible to rely on colors.

As you use typography through each headline to bring contrast to your user experience, you can set up a hierarchy between individual elements by manipulating sizes.

It is also important to take the so-called white space into consideration. Do not consider it merely as an empty space. It helps you provide a clear visual experience by setting up a hierarchy between different segments.

Poor Accessibility Source: Josh Calabrese

Proper contrast is also essential for those with visual impairment. Using low contrast makes it difficult for the visually impaired to navigate on the given surface.

3) Lack of Emotional Impulses

One of the best tools for an emotional user experience is staying away from long and boring videos. People like to identify with others and wait for confirmation. Thus, product videos on the website serve as a great reference point. According to research by Hubspot, 71% of Consumers prefer product videos. Whether it is a product that demonstrates the use of a specific product or simply a “slice of life”.

 Example Emotional Impulses Source: Zara

71% of consumers think video explains the product better.” - Hubspot

Colors can also be important in terms of triggering emotions. Of course, for example, red is often associated with excitement, but elsewhere it is associated with aggression. So the answer is that it depends! Choose the colors that best represent your online business.

4) Limited Experience

Web design trends are always changing. What looks amazing today may be out of fashion tomorrow, but access to mobile devices is not going away anytime soon. People are browsing mobile on the go, sometimes at work, and anytime when there is no desktop computer nearby. They obviously expect information to be accessible as fast as possible regardless of the device.

Responsive Designs Source: Nikolay Tarashchenko

It's important for your website to load fast and be platform independent. But what does this mean in practice? According to surveys,mobile traffic makes up more than 50% of web traffic and mobile visitors will leave the website if it does not load within 3 seconds or less. Then there’s the question of complexity. It’s great if your website is so well designed that your visitors/users don’t need help. But most of the time you can’t avoid some level of complexity. In this case, providing an accessible and clear guide for your audience is a must.

5) Overall Unprofessionalism

We often hear/read about professional websites. The quality of web design, photos, and content greatly contributes to positive judgment. Along with these, the simplicity and flexibility of navigation are combined. This means that as soon as a visitor arrives on your page and enters your conversion funnel, the UX machine starts up. Use a lot of high definition, unique and natural images and avoid using stock photography cliches. The first two are self-explanatory, preferably do not use the Google Image Finder to find the - often low quality - image that will represent your business for a long time online.

 Professionalism Source: Hunters Race

You might want to think about using paid images when designing the user experience.If the images are not of high quality, your users will notice very quickly. This will result in a gradual deterioration of website conversion. In terms of copy, adjust it to your target group. In the B2B sector, professional jargon is often expected, but as far as B2C is concerned, it is frequently avoided.

6) Bad CTA Placement

Effective and transparent navigation is one of the basic pillars of websites. Call-to-action elements (CTAs for short) play a particularly important role in web design. Now, it’s worth noting that these can be more than just buttons. Any element that is designed to grab the user’s attention and trigger a click can be considered a CTA. You can optimize your website by looking at areas of the site that are being clicked at a higher frequency.

 Cta Placement Source: Adria Berrocal Forcada

From a conversion rate optimization standpoint, if a button - or any clickable object - is not attracting attention as expected, it needs to be redesigned/repositioned. Test different options, place the CTA elsewhere or rename it. To make such decisions, it is essential that you see your page with the eyes of the users. It may happen that the CTAs that receive the most clicks, are the less relevant ones and do not have a key role in conversion. In this case, it may be a solution if the given CTA is moved to an area that triggers fewer interactions. It’s a good practice to guarantee that your most vital elements are well-visible, for example in above-the-fold area. This is the segment of your webpage that is visible to the user without the need for scrolling.

7) Lack of Dedicated Landing Pages

The landing page is a page (as the name suggests), which has exactly one specific purpose: to convert. Exactly one. No more, no less. That is why a good landing page does not have a menu bar, a footer, or any outbound link that you can click to let the visitor navigate from the page. This is because people's attention is often diverted by what we do not want (research shows that it is about 8 seconds before you lose your attention).

A profitable built-in landing page is therefore designed to reach a predetermined goal as fast as possible. Maybe you want to sell, build an e-mail database or introduce a new product. The point is that you will have to create a new landing page for each goal, as you should only persuade people to perform that selected action (or exit without converting). That is why I can not emphasize enough how important it is to have only one goal with a landing page!

Here are the 3 most common goals when it comes to landing pages:

  • Triggering clicks - In this case, the landing page it doesn’t contain the final offer, but it helps navigation, for example towards a specific product during a Black Friday event.
  • Lead Generation - In this case, our goal is to collect data about the visitors. These can be later used for follow-up campaigns. Lead generation and lead management are key elements of an inbound marketing strategy.
  • Purchasing - In this case, you want to sell the product on the landing page directly. At the end of the page, the visitor can order (and even pay for it at once).

The complexity and the length of a landing page depend to a great extent on the expected purpose, since a small amount of information may be enough for someone to enter their e-mail address or to buy the product on the spot.

That is why different goals (in general) are associated with a number of different designs to maximize the conversion rate.

Conclusion

There are several reasons why a website visitor chooses to move forward. One of the main obstacles can be a neglected user experience. In addition to fonts and colors, take care of the quality and naturalness of the images. When it comes to CTAs, the above-the-fold area is a goldmine, so make sure to place your most important action triggering elements there, but also don’t abuse this segment. Use the possibilities of emotional design and fire up dedicated landing pages whenever you want to focus the visitor’s attention on a target goal.

About the Author:

Róbert Tóth as the Content Marketing Manager of Capturly.com He is always open to helping with issues that aim to optimize user satisfaction. During his free time, he likes to experiment with new techniques and solutions in relation to web analytics, web development, and UX.

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