Website user experience: How to convert customers and get them to visit again

Angela Hundal, Sam Itani July 2019

We discussed the importance of a unique creative strategy tailored for performance video, then how to reach the right audience at the ideal time through media and measurement tools that drive active engagement. But incredible creative strategies and state-of-the-art media and measurement tools won’t lead to improved performance unless your customers can actually convert on your website. To do that, they need to enjoy a great user experience (UX).

Consider this: well-designed user interfaces see a conversion rate of more than 200%, with 88% of online consumers being less likely to return to a site after a bad user experience. We’ve shortlisted 4 ways to ensure your site’s UX offers a consistent and seamless user journey that not only keeps your customers on your website for longer but also encourages them to visit again.

1. Keep your mobile assets in shape

It takes 50 milliseconds1 for someone to form a first impression of your brand. Your digital platforms are often the first place your customers interact with your business. With that in mind, users need to be able to quickly and easily execute transactions on your site – no matter what device they’re using. In the Middle East, that’s likely to be mobile. Mobile traffic was responsible for 66.4% of all internet traffic in Saudi Arabia and 55.7% in the UAE in 20182. With that in mind, if your mobile site or app allows users to make fuss-free purchases at the tap of a finger, the likelihood of a customer buying from you today is much higher than it was one year ago. 

2. Optimize your sites for speed and apps for easy discovery 

Based on our research, successful mobile businesses are the ones that get their mobile assets, measurement, and promotional strategies in order fast. If you’d like more guidance on the above, Google has published a host of resources covering everything from best practices for mobile web or app design to site speed testing tools, and even recommendations on how to deep link to your app content3. However, one of the first things you should do is optimize your sites for speed and your apps for easy discovery via deep linking, keeping the best design practices in mind for both. While this set-up requires some effort, in the beginning, the tangible business outcomes that result are worth it. Once your assets are in place, we’d recommend continually and regularly investing in your mobile experiences’ optimization.

3. Never prioritize form over function

Let’s use salt and pepper shakers as an example of UX design. They are usually confusing (bad UX) because, despite the various designs and number of holes, a user still cannot consistently predict which one contains the salt and which one contains pepper, especially between countries, or even between restaurants. Similarly, when you’re designing your digital platforms, keep in mind that the best user experiences are always the ones that work the best, not necessarily the ones that look the best. A good website is a customer-centric one that gives users the information they want and eliminates any doubts they may have. The good news is you can up your UX game with just a few tweaks, like complementing website icons with text labels and making it really clear what your website features do. Combining several ideas to multiply effects over time is also a good idea. This case study showcases that a sticky menu (a website menu that’s locked in place and can be accessed anywhere without the need for scrolling) sees a 10% increase in menu interactions and 5% more checkout starts. Exposing the search bar, rather than keeping it hidden until an icon is tapped, sees a 32% increase in sessions with search, while making a simple ‘checkout’ call to action (CTA) more descriptive sees a 1% boost in click-through rate (CTR). When combined, these can result in a 49% increase in conversion rate (CVR). 

4. Build an A/B testing culture 

Often, UX teams build complex new designs before understanding how users will react to them. But, when a UX team understands a user and his or her experience of a website, that team can learn and improve on the next round of changes. This is where A/B testing – that teaches UX teams what users want from a website – comes in. Our data shows that without A/B testing, a change you implement on your site has a 70% chance of negative or no impact on your revenue. 

5. Improving UX can boost revenue

By designing customer-centric websites, updating your mobile assets, optimizing sites and apps for speed and easy discovery, choosing form over function, nurturing an A/B testing culture, and being open to change, you can create websites that not only engage users all the way to conversion but also encourage people to visit again in the future. This case study showcases how Modanisa’s mobile conversion rate rose by 91% thanks to improved website usability.