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Good navigation can increase sales through your website

16/01/2015
Cameron
Cameron

Nearly every website will have navigation features of some kind. These may be in the form of buttons or click-through links on text or images. Even the most well-designed websites from a creative perspective can be let down by terrible navigation. From a marketing perspective, it is vital to get your website navigation sorted to increase the average time on your site. This in turn will increase sales for eCommerce.

The importance of functional navigation

Simply having a way to navigate around the site may not be the most effective way to increase loyalty on your site. Customers struggling to find what they are looking for are likely to give up and leave your site. Businesses also don’t want to miss opportunities to engage further with customers, so presenting important links such as a “get in touch” form in an eye-catching way, will help to invite visitors to take further action. Here are some basic tips to getting your website navigation right:

1. Page-to-page consistency

On each page, keep the location of menu options the same. This makes it easier to use, and stops confusion. If navigation options move around the pages, readers will get lost and frustrated with your site and are less likely to follow through to the point of sale.

2. Clarity of options

Present your visitors with a clear set of options to choose from to click on. Make sure these are obviously displayed with clear names, such as “About Us” or “Contact Us” when looking for company details. Add subcategories separately from main menu options, for example a drop-down menu underneath them, or being available only once clicked-through from the original page.

3. Navigation by clicking

Ensure that all of your category headings can be clicked on in order to navigate to that page. This should be obvious to readers by appearing as a hyperlink, usually underlined and a different colour to the main text, when embedded in copy.

4. Give more options

To increase click-through rate to links, you can make sure that there are other ways to reach the landing page. For example, if you have a blog feature on your site, you might choose to display previews on your homepage. With each preview might be an image, heading and teaser text. To read more, visitors should have the option to either click on “read more”, the heading itself, or via clicking on the image. This increases the likelihood that they will click through, as it makes the link easily accessible.

Allow functional searching

The feature of a search bar can be particularly useful for businesses selling multiple products where customers are likely to want to type in an exact product name or number producing the correct result that they are looking for. Due to this, when designing and implementing this on your website, you should bear in mind that searches may not always be spelt correctly. Since you always want the search to direct them to the right place, even if they type it wrong, you should allow for these options to still get them to the correct result. A result of “no products found” could leave them feeling dissatisfied and result in losing sales for your business.

Be the best

For website designs that beat your competitors, are fully functional and increase your sales, it is important to seek the advice of an experienced web-designer. When your customers are able to browse your site easily and efficiently, they will be more likely to buy your products and services, and return in the future after their pleasant experience.

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