May22

What Visitors Expect from Your Website

Have you ever wondered what visitors expect to find when they come to your Web site, whether through search or inbound links or by directly entering your site URL? Recent design and usability research completed by OneUpWeb shines a light on what’s important to people when they visit particular types of Web sites. Let’s take a look at what the findings reveal that might influence your next site redesign.

Great Expectations

In How Well Does Your Web Site Cater to Your Customers? we identified the general attributes that customers require—and desire—from a business Web site. This new research adds specifics for common types of businesses. Table 1 summarizes the findings about visitor expectations for ecommerce, B2B and travel and hospitality sites.

The top five expectations in each category tell the tale. For ecommerce sites, it’s all about easy-to-access pricing and total-cost information, a site design that elicits credibility and trust and visually appealing product presentations.

For B2B sites, information matters most. Prospective customers want to fully understand what your business provides and how your products or services will solve their particular problem or fulfill their need. B2B site visitors also expect to find a simple way to contact you when they’re ready to take the next step in the purchasing process.

Not surprising, travel and hospitality sites need to look good, but they also must provide exceptional functionality in key areas. Prospective customers want to see the rooms—not just read about them—and learn about the amenities you offer. But they also want to easily check on rates and availability and quickly book online if they choose to do so.

Use This Data to Revitalize Your Web Site

The next time you’re ready to redesign your business Web site, keep customer expectations top of mind and design your site to better meet those needs. For example, if your ecommerce site provides total-cost information only at checkout, perhaps letting prospects access that information earlier in the consideration process becomes your top priority. On B2B sites, maybe adding a glossary or FAQ or presenting your content in a more online-reader-friendly format will make the information you provide more accessible to prospects and first-time buyers. Likewise, if aesthetics matter in your line of business, make sure you provide high-quality—and highly efficient—media experiences backed by exceptional site functionality in the areas that matter most to your prospects.

Finally, remember that the more information you can gather firsthand about what your ideal customers expect from your Web site, the better. Understanding what they want to find and do on your site, then meeting—or better yet, exceeding—those expectations will make their decision to do business with you that much easier.

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