A business needs to establish its own unique identity and presence in order to stand apart from the competition. In this modern digital world, a website is often the core representation of your brand and identity. It is important to ensure the platform is crisp, modern, and informative.
It is a good idea to update your website every once in a while, to get the best results. If your platform is too outdated, it won’t attract customers or have a good impression on them. Around 75% of people online will decide on your business’ credibility and trustworthiness based on the website design.
In this article, we discuss ways to optimize your website and impress these consumers in 2019.
1. Mobile Speed
First and foremost, you need to pay attention to the mobile speed. This is the first thing people will notice, especially if it isn’t optimized. If your website takes more than 3 to 4 seconds to load on a mobile device, people will abandon it. The rate of abandonment will keep rising based on how slow your site is.
According to data collected by Akamai and Gomez, more than 40% of the people leave a website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. Around 47% expect a site to load in less than 3 seconds and around 52% admit that website load times influence their loyalty towards a store.
When you consider these factors, it is easy to understand why mobile speed is so important. Google also recognizes the importance of speed and released an update in 2018 that ranks faster websites higher. You can improve website design by optimizing images, refining website structure, using responsive websites, etc. A fast website will have the best impression on your visitors.
2. Add Video Content
People hesitate to add video content to their website because they don’t want the site speed to be bogged down by the weight of the video. But you don’t need to worry as a properly optimized website with carefully embedded video will still load quickly and efficiently on all platforms, including mobile.
Video provides a lot of user engagement because people find visual content appealing. This is one of the reasons why visual platforms like Instagram and YouTube have such high levels of user engagement. Videos don’t just convey information in an easy-to-understand format, but it also conveys sentiment and emotions well. Reaching the heart of the customer is always a great marketing strategy. Video can help you achieve that.
There are several ways to incorporate video into your website design. You can use clips as a website background design. This compels users to remain on the website for a longer time, which has a positive impact on your ranking.
Google algorithm considers website dwell time in order to determine user experience. Users dwell on a website for a long time because it has kept them engaged and provides them with good value. By watching a video and remaining on a site, users send a clear message to Google.
3. AI Chatbots
Chatbots have been around for nearly 20 years. Many designers incorporate them into the website design instinctively because they provide tremendous value. However, many website owners fail to upgrade and optimize this tool. This means the chatbots are outdated and don’t provide the same advantages that the latest chatbots do.
The latest chatbots incorporate machine learning and AI to offer customer service. They offer quick responses and solutions to customers. If they can’t find a resolution, the customer can be easily directed towards a human customer service agent for resolution. This doesn’t just improve the efficiency of customer service but also contributes towards user experience.
AI chatbots can often handle all basic queries and issues, which means users don’t have to leave the site to get the information they need. These increases dwell time, conversion rates, and user satisfaction.
Chatbots also collect a lot of data from their interactions with users. You can analyze this data carefully to improve products and services.
4. Add Animations
Animations can be captivating and improve dwell times as well. Things like quick looks, drop-down menus appearing when the mouse passes over them, hover-buttons, etc., can encourage users to focus on the content and lead to better dwell times. You can also add affirmative actions to improve user satisfaction. For example, one user completes a task, the button associated with it changes from red to green.
These might seem like small, insignificant touches, but they can have a big impact on the overall user experience. People tend to stay on sites with integrated animations longer than on sites without them.
2019 is a great year to incorporate these little animations and get the most out of the users. These might never really go out of style.
5. Custom Illustrations and Images
Think about your own experiences while visiting websites. Do you prefer sites that have custom illustrations, original images, and candid content or do you like a site with generic images and stock photos?
Most people will favor the former simply because that portrays a level of authenticity. Websites with original and candid imagery appear more appealing, trustworthy, and authoritative.
Custom illustrations also give a website a unique character and image. This can bolster your brand and help you stand apart from competitors. It is easy to hire an illustrator or artist online and get great artwork for an affordable price. You can just browse through Instagram and YouTube to find great artists willing to provide custom work.
This minor investment can improve the overall appeal of your website by a considerable margin.
6. Flat and Minimal Design
Until recently, most websites where cluttered and content took up the entire screen space. The primary content was in the center, flanked by different links, ads, and menus. This is a very distracting design that compromises user experience.
With the focus on mobile and speed, website designers started to move towards minimal design with ample whitespace. These websites load quickly on all platforms and look great on all screen sizes.
This flat and minimal design draws focus to the primary content and improves dwell times. People are able to understand the information better and have a great user experience. This trend isn’t going anywhere and will be even more prominent in 2019.
These trends will help your website reach new heights and draw more audience in 2019. It is a good idea to start optimizing early and give your website design a fresh look today.
Derek Luise is working as a Jr. content writer and blogger with Ethane Technologies. He can be seen blogging about web design, Android app development, iOS app development and many more.