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by, Lesa Seibert, President, Xstreme Media

What Does a Visitor Expect From Your Website?

In Part III of our series we looked at what are the objectives of your website when visitors arrive.  Is your site planned out or just a hodgepodge of random items?

This week we are going to look at what a visitor should expect from your website.  In Part I of our series we discussed understanding your target audience, which should help you determine what your visitors expect when they arrive at your site.  This is the main goal of your site - have the information, products or services that your visitor is coming to your site for displayed in a manner which is easily accessible and understandable to the visitor.

First is ease of use.  Nothing will lose a visitor faster than a website that is hard to navigate.  If they have to spend more than 10-12 seconds looking for what they came there for you have lost them.  They will get frustrated and leave.  Have you ever been to those sites that have so much going on it makes you dizzy trying to absorb it all?  Make what you offer, services or products, clearly evident to your visitor on your home page.  From there they should only have to make one (1) click to get to the specific information they are looking for.  Are links to sub pages buried on secondary pages?  Can your visitor get to any page on your site from the home page?  Also, review the download time for your site.  The average internet user will wait no more than 8 seconds before jumping to antoher page or stopping the page from opening all together if it is too slow.  An opportunity lost.

Second is applicable content.  Does your site really tell people what you do or what your products are in a short, concise manner?  Have you ever read your own website like a visitor would?  If you are using a internet or traditional marketing campaign that drives people to your site, build a landing page that will give them the information that they were promised in your campaign.  Sometimes taking them to your home page, if it is not well constructed and very evident to the visitor where they need to go, can lose the visitor.  They get to your home page that says nothing about the ad that drove them there, so they will get frustrated and leave.

In Part V of our six part series, we will look at what do you want your visitor to leave with.

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