What brought you to this post? Chances are it has something to do with your psychology. You were looking for a solution, you wanted to learn more, you were engaged by the post excerpt on Facebook or Twitter or Google and you felt prompted to click in to the post. Or something along those lines. Either way, there was a reason, and you acted on it.
Psychology rules pretty much everything we do and it’s incredibly important to be aware of this (and to plan accordingly) when you’re designing & developing a website for your business. The potency of strategizing for your target market’s psychology cannot be underestimated. Yes, it’s like rigging the game a little, but as a marketer, that’s exactly what you need to do, and it’s what every successful marketing company the world over has built their success upon – using psychology against people, for their own gain.
Maybe I’m biased, as I have a degree and a life-long interest in Psychology, but I also believe that helps me better advise clients in many matters related to online marketing –
- What engages people
- Why your website isn’t working
- Why sales & conversions are low
- What steps you need to take to ensure user attraction & conversion
- How to improve brand loyalty
…and so on.
The truth is that I completely appreciate where people are coming from when they visit a website. They want solutions in the clearest of places, they want simple, structured choices that don’t hurt their brain. In a way you could say that they want ‘frictionless’ options… those that just seem intuitive, natural and ‘easy’. Don’t we all want this?
To clarify what I mean by this it’s probably more pertinent to use the negative; have you been on one of those websites where all you want is to find the information you’re looking for, and yet no matter how you search for it, no matter what links you click, you never get there? Frustrating isn’t it?
That’s pretty much the polar opposite of the environment you want to create for your visitors and potential customers. And it’s also one of the biggest mistakes that businesses (and web companies) make on a daily basis. So many people ignore this vital factor when designing their website and the structures within it. It’s not a good plan if you want long-term success with your website, that’s for sure.
Keep it Simple
I used to get really angry when people used to say to me “Just keep it simple”… I was young and headstrong and thought, “NO! I want to show the world what I can do at all turns!”. Truthfully, this was largely at times when I was in bands and wanted to let rip on my drum kit to impress everybody in the room (and maybe the odd girl), but it did pervade into other areas of life where you just desire to be respected… it’s harder when you’re young; you’re constantly out to impress someone and prove your worth… but the truth is that getting fancy rarely serves the greater good and often times will actually limit your audience and your long-term success.
Even our first websites suffered badly from a mish-mash of textures, gradients and a conflicting, stylistic lack of consistency. It meant we had to revise the websites every few months because we grew tired of what we had previously worked at. Slowly we managed to design websites that lasted longer and we grew tired of less quickly. Our website now is by far our simplest design, clean/white with only touches of colour. Still, I think anyone would agree it’s our most focused and best design.
What are Your Objectives?
If I had one piece of advice for anyone considering a new website it would be to plan it a bit first. Don’t necessarily go straight to a web consultancy but instead have a look around at your competitors’ sites and also general sites online, taking notes on what areas of each inspire you or turn you off. What frustrates you and engages you. The ‘like’ and ‘don’t like’ exercise is something we ask all of our clients to do anyway.
Then go to work on creating a ‘mind-map’ of what your website needs to have, without focusing too much on the visual – think of what pieces of information are important for you to “Put out there” and what pieces of information are important for your clients/visitors to find quickly and easily. Your web consultancy (hopefully ours) will then be able to advise on how best to achieve these objectives and how best to balance the different factors within the setting of an attractive, Search Engine Optimised website.
This is how to quickly and efficiently create a solid, long-term success within a website. Just plan. And above all, consider what information it’s important to display. I know sometimes the urge is to blast people with portfolio items, testimonials, blog posts, social media links and more… and sometimes this is a good thing too. However, depending on your industry and your client type (and hence, their psychology) it may be the single greatest mistake you ever make.
Here’s a quick bullet-list of items you should be considering before you approach a web company so you know better, exactly what you need & want to get across to your visitors.
- Design – Clean, Gritty, flowery, colours, minimalist, content-driven, visually stirring etc.
- Structure of Pages – What pages are important to be at the ‘top-tier’ level of your menu system? About? Testimonials? Your services list?
- Key Areas of Importance for you to display (e.g. prices? Upcoming events? testimonials? New products?)
- Key Areas of Importance for your clients to find (Same as above).
Once you have this information formulated, come to us (or your web company) and discuss how to make that a reality.
If you have any queries, as always please hit the comment button below and we’ll do our best to help out.