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Design evaluation methods and how to improve landing page

Everyone has their personal opinion on a good web design, right? But when it comes to the details, it turns out that everyone’s opinion is different. However, the only opinion that matters here is the opinion of the client.

So, what are the key factors you should consider when evaluating the design? And why are they important? This article is a kind of checklist you can run throw to evaluate your web design.

#1 WEBSITE GOAL

Even the most beautiful websites are worthless if it is not clear what users should do. Prepare a strategy and communicate it through design.

  • The website should clearly present the category of the business and the purpose of the website. Is the design accomplishing it?
  • What is the target audience? Is the design adapted for them?

If user visits the page and is able to clearly understand its goal, the longer term bond could be formed [1]. To make sure that users understand the goal of your website, you can use Usefulness Testing or Desirability Testing.

#2 APPEARANCE

"Consumers want experiences that cost them the least cognitive effort" - Richard Chataway, a Vice President at BVA Nudge Unit UK.

The first impression is considered a vital factor for website success [2] and through A/B testing it is possible to show actual design value to the conversions. So take a moment and review your page through the eyes of a new user. It is useful to run through the key design rules.

Simplicity

Simple is beautiful – do not over complicate your page. The users get frustrated when they have to put a lot of cognitive effort to find what they need. Attention insight has implemented the metric to calculate how complex your web page is. This especially helps in communication between a person who gives the requirements and a designer/executor, who will try to minimize visible features on the screen to make website easier to use.

Let’s take a look at the examples. We have checked the Complexity score of two websites: Grammarly and the page that is the worst of the worst.

Grammarly Web Page
SABAH Web Page

How we can see, Grammarly is a perfect example of a simple design. The landing page contains only few text blocks to explain what they do and invites the new users for the action – to install browser extension. Talking about the SABAH web page, the Complexity score 100 % says it all.

Usability

Is it easy for users to find what they are searching for? Make sure the key elements are visible and are located where users expect to find them. A navigation menu should be clear and as short as possible. For content rich websites usability, the studies advice to have functional and clearly visible search bar.

Consistency in design

Is your site consistent? This point is especially important for the larger companies when more than one person is designing the website.

Colors

Colors create a strong impression of the webpage and the brand. Make sure that the colors of your website are in harmony. Also, if your target audience is men, take into account that 8 % of all men will be affected by color blindness and will see your web page in a different manner.

Credit: The Logo Company

Accessibility

Is your website accessible? This matters especially if your target audience is elderly people. Check weather the fonts are easy to read, a contrast is high enough between background and font, the text size is readable on desktop as well as mobile, etc.

Content chunks

Content should be distributed in the small chunks so it would be easier to grasp the main idea just by scanning the page. For example, Politico news portal does a great job dividing their text into the smaller parts with bolded words that catch the attention.

Goal

Is it easy to find the goal of your website? The first rule says that you should define what are the main paths that you want user to take. This rule says – make sure that the key path is the most visible. In Attention Insight we use Attention Maps to verify design ideas and make sure that the main objects receive the most users’ attention.

The heatmap created with Attention Insight

#3 FUNCTIONALITY

The last but not least – is your site actually functional? No matter how beautiful your web design is, users will leave it if takes ages to load. Follow this checklist to evaluate the functionality of your landing page:

  • Is the site responsive and adapted for mobile devices?
  • How fast does your site load?
  • Do all of your links work?
  • Does your sign up/log in and the main user paths work properly? For example, verify that the mandatory fields are validated and marked with asterisks; ensure that very long emails will not be truncated; check the scenario when user session timeouts, etc.
  • Is the site cross-browser compatible?
  • Do Web Stress tests. Check what happens if many users come to the page. How does it handle the load and recover from crashes? Stress is generally given on input fields, log in and sign up areas.
  • Verify the spelling.
  • Does chat or contact form allow user to contact you?
  • Does a GDPR pop up work as expected?
  • Verify that the page is using https (especially if it contains any sensitive data).
  • Are the most important operations and errors logged? Check it so that you could find what happened and when.
  • Verify that you cannot access the secured web pages without login.
  • Verify that clicking on logo leads to home page.

References:

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