Improving your website’s usability is often the first step towards increasing conversions and ROI. Besides actual usability testing, a great way to understand what users are doing on your site is to watch their actual behavior patterns on your website with free tools such as Google Analytics. In this post I’ll show you 5 ways to improve usability based on reviewing this data.
1. Use The Site Overlay Tool
Google’s Site Overlay tool is a great way to get a quick visual overview of where people click and where they don’t. Using this tool will give you a bird’s eye view of what’s working and not working on your site. For example, you’ll be able to tell very quickly if people are reaching your contact page from the home page.
2. Navigation Summary
Similar to the site overlay tool, the navigation summary can give insights into the overall effectiveness of your site structure. It helps you figure out whether or not visitors to your site are going where you want them to, such as a landing page or signup form. If people aren’t following your intended navigation path, you probably need to make some structural changes to help them get where you want them to go.
3. What’s the top Entry Page?
The first page that a visitor sees often determines whether or not they stay on your site, and most visitors will arrive for the first time at a page other than your home page. If they get confused or don’t find what they are looking for, most people will leave immediately. Identifying your “Top Entry” pages will help you find content within your site that may better serve your audience at a higher level, such as on the home page.
4. What’s the top Exit Page?
Another important factor is the “exit rate” on a page. This is an especially important metric for online shopping carts, since it shows the ratio of people who left your site after visiting two or more pages. If your shopping cart exit rate is high, you can usually make changes to specific pages to reduce shopping cart abandonment.
5. Check Your Bounce Rate
Your bounce rate measures visitors who are landing on your site but leaving without making a second click. If your bounce rate is high, apparently your site has failed to inspire further exploration, and these users click away to their next internet adventure. Look at where visitors are coming from. This often indicates the level interest they have in your offering. A high bounce rate is a red flag to further investigate why they are not finding what they need.
Hopefully these tips will help you improve your site’s usability and increase conversions as a result. What else do you use to improve conversions and ROI on your websites?
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