User interface (UI) design is always changing and evolving to fit the needs of web users. While trends come and go, solid user experience techniques are continually being refined and improved. This progression can be seen through different elements that frequently crop up across web designs. Here are a few tips to make your site easy to use and to improve site design.
#1: Quick Registration
If there’s one thing internet users don’t like, it’s long registration processes that prolong them from browsing or purchasing. Asking for a lot of unnecessary personal information is also a good way to scare people off. Require minimal information to create an account, and make it easy for return customers to sign in.
Zappos offers several options for checking out, like signing in with your email address (which is easier than remembering a username), creating an account, or logging in via your Amazon account. All these options are quick and easy, and the benefits of each are displayed to help you choose.
#2: White Space and Accent Color
Sites with a lot of information, especially ones like eCommerce sites, often become cluttered with all the products and information they offer. Many successful websites have started using white space and minimal color to de-clutter the design and emphasize its functionality.
Russell Athletic uses Amazon’s eCommerce software to present a clean and open layout. Its navigation is clear and actionable.
Storyville Coffee is successful in using both white space and a signature color throughout. The soft, neutral background highlights products, and the bright red calls attention to essential elements to create an attractive and functional design.
#3: Reviews and Ratings
The internet is a great place for people to connect and sympathize with each other. Customers and readers can share experiences, often with more trust than they have in what the company has to say. Create an opportunity to rate your products or comment on your post to engage visitors and keep your material relevant.
Many people go straight to Amazon’s customer reviews for feedback on products because of their convenient system. It allows you to rate and make comments, and then it shows overall results and groups similar statements.
#4: Breadcrumb Navigation
Guide your visitors to your site by showing them the path they’ve followed. It’s a good idea to implement this into the checkout process as well, to demonstrate the number of steps in the process.
Free People has several subcategories under each category of clothing, so it’s helpful to see a map of what you’ve already seen.
#5: Progressive Disclosure
Showing related items to customers and hiding irrelevant information until sought out is an effective way to de-clutter your interface. It also gives indicators for action and promotes items that the clients are interested in.
Victoria’s Secret suggests both related product items, as well as accessories to complete an outfit. Both encourage people to keep browsing and make a satisfying purchase.
While of course creativity and uniqueness are both vital to great web design—ultimately, easy to understand user interface is crucial if you want your readers or customers to stick around and convert into returning visitors.