You’ve probably heard dozens of inspirational quotes about how “the journey is more important than the destination” and “it’s how the road flows, not where it goes.” While these mantras provide a lovely existential perspective, subscribing to this philosophy when designing your website can spell disaster.
It doesn’t matter how gorgeous the view on your website is if your prospects can’t reach their destination. A website with a convoluted or cumbersome customer path will have difficulty converting clients.
It’s Adventure Time
Let’s define what a customer path is. When designing your website, you have goals for how you want the customer to interact with it. Whether you want them to enroll in a complimentary class, schedule a consult call, or download your e-book, there’s a move you want them to make. Every step from the first interaction to hitting the goal is part of the customer’s path.
Creating a straight shot to your call to action, or CTA, will provide a better user experience and increase your conversion rate. A website with a clearly defined pathway will give visitors an “easy-yes” experience and make them want to act.
How to Identify Your Customer Path
Step One: Choose Your Ultimate Call to Action
It’s time to play favorites. If your website has multiple CTAs, choose one to create your primary customer path. This call to action will be the “ultimate action” you want visitors to take while visiting your site and can be a free offering or a paid service.
For example, let’s say you currently have two CTAs on your website. The first encourages the reader to subscribe to your email list, and the second CTA prompts the prospect to schedule a consultation or discovery call. If a visitor will only perform one of these actions, you’ll want them to schedule a consultation since that action leads to becoming a customer.
Step Two: Count Your Clicks
When designing your customer path, think sidewalk, not corn maze. The fewer decisions, or clicks, your visitor must take to reach the ultimate action, the more likely they are to arrive. Count the clicks required to get from your home page to the ultimate action. Your customer path ventures into maze territory with more than three clicks, and there’s an increased risk of your visitor becoming confused or disinterested. Ideally, prospective clients should be able to travel from the home page to CTA with a single click.
Step Three: Keep it Simple
Look at your website with fresh eyes and determine how easy your primary CTA is to locate. Your CTA may seem readily apparent from your point of view but could be too subtle to catch the attention of a first-time visitor. Head to each site page and ensure your CTA is accessible from all of them. Put your primary CTA in the header and footer of every page and the main content when applicable. Then, whenever they’re ready to take the next step, your CTA will be ready and waiting; no scavenger hunt is required.
Depending on your business and website design, you may benefit from using banners, slide-ins, or pop-ups to highlight your call to action. Also, don’t be afraid to give visitors various avenues to find your CTA.
Just the Beginning
Keep visitors to your site on track with easy-to-navigate pathways, and you’ll see an increase in your conversion rate. This technique is only one of the many fundamental shifts we teach business owners and creatives in our membership training program; The Designer to Developer Launchpad. Join us if you’re ready to master core web design principles and become a sought-after web designer.