Any online business has a single metric that rules supreme over all others: the conversion rate. A conversion rate means business is happening. If you want to convert visitors into customers (or to take other actions on your website), then you have to get some things right, such as website design, SEO, social media, advertising, and content.

Let’s get going by understanding what role website design plays in particular when it comes to boosting conversion rates.

How does web design impact conversion rates?

Good website design has certain principles that remain always the same, be it a huge website or just a landing page. If website design is going to improve your conversions, then you need to consider and then optimize the following things:

User experience

Foster the usability of a site. Is your site user-friendly, and even intuitive? Those are two key design factors that impact conversions. Usability is something that can be measured by how easily users are able to perform certain tasks on your site, as well as how fast they can do them. That is the customer journey. The longer it takes for a customer to journey through your website, the less likely there will be a proper conversion.

Usability features do change based on a website’s intended purpose. Elaborate drop-down menus aren’t necessarily required for a landing page, but an eCommerce website relies heavily on them for simple navigation.

The opinion a visitor has of your website’s usability and functionality is often going to form within five seconds when they reach your website. When you design a website, it’s a good idea to scope out various usability ideas from your competitor’s websites, or run user test groups involving multiple design templates. This way, you’ll get an idea of which design performed the best that you can implement.

Conversion-centric design features

Implement design features that are conversion-centric. Particular design features have a tremendous impact on conversion. When done correctly, visitors will be guided to the actions you want them to take.

Use headings

Large headings over critical pieces of information make it easier for users to find what they’re looking for, or what you want them to see. Establish and maintain a robust font hierarchy. Readers can derive critical cues from this about the importance and nature of any individual pieces of content.

Important elements above the fold

Put your more important elements above the fold, but don’t clutter your page. Website elements that deserve to be above the fold include a search bar, a call to action, social media links, sign-up forms, and navigation buttons.

Fast load speed

Be certain that your website is on a host that loads fast, although design matters a lot here too. It won’t matter how great your content is if it’s on a slow-loading website that people get impatient with and run from. Speed up your load times by combining multiple style sheets and scripts into one. Avoid Flash, and make use of CSS over buttons, background colors, and images. You can test website speed and garner insights right from Google here.

Lookin’ good!

Adhere to aesthetic web design principles. Your website is what communicates for you, and pleasant communication is something that helps visitors feel like they are welcome when visiting your website. That makes them more likely to stick around.

Visuals and colors do boost brand recognition, affect emotions, and influence purchase decisions. Images, arrows, white spaces, buttons, text, and lines are all elements you can use in aesthetic manners in order to direct the attention of visitors to your call to action.

Make your visitors happy

Make your customers delighted. Dissatisfied customers tend to complain, and that kind of news is one that travels fast and far.

Wrapping up

A few things that can hinder your site from truly fulfilling its potential for generating income include poor design, ecommerce transactions that are not smooth, an inability of users to locate content they want or need easily, too many clicks in order to accomplish things, and overall poor design. Correcting such issues carries a price tag that’s always higher than just getting them right to start with.

You’re always going to be tweaking and testing, but don’t leave any money on the table when you start. Know your customers, understand what they come to you for, and then make things fast and simple for them to get it done.