6 Jedi Mind Tricks of Effective Web DesignsThe most successful ad campaigns were created by masters of human psychology. Website designers can create a better user experience and move visitors to the actions they wish for them to take by understanding the psychological reactions of the human mind.
Here are six tactics for your new website or the one that you already to make a powerful impression.
1. Use Colors to Establish Mood
Your business must establish its emotion, integrity, authority, and standards in the colors, headers and banners it publishes on its website. For example, colors are psychologically important to logo design.
An infographic published by The Logo Company says that red colors like those used by Target and Coca-Cola create excitement and have a youthful, bold feeling. Blue logos, such as Lowe’s, Dell, and WalMart, portray trust, strength and dependability. Green graphics, like John Deere and Tropicana, elicit emotional responses such as peacefulness, growth, and health. Identify the emotional feelings your brand needs to evoke across all of your website’s elements and be mindful of the colors you use.
Which brings us to our next point…
2. Be Consistent
Branded graphics must carry your marketing mantra across all touch points. Email templates, blog articles, social media profiles, brochures, envelopes, business cards, and yes… your website. Consistent colors, imagery, messages, tone and structure help your visitors feel that they are on the right path and in the right place. A sudden change in any element can elicit feelings of confusion. If it is disconnected from your other brand pieces, it probably will not resonate with them and may even make them feel like you are not a good fit for them.
3. The Psychology of Layout
In the old days of folded up newspapers, printers would place most important articles and advertisements “above the fold,” or at the top half of the paper. Today, the page fold refers to the area of a computer monitor a visitor can see without scrolling down the webpage. According to Nielsen, 80 percent of web users spend their time above the fold. Therefore, having your main CTA’s below the fold may not be the best practice.
This is no way means that you have to cram everything into the top portion of your website. Many successful sites contain long pages that require a bit of scrolling to consume all the content. This can be used to tell a brand story, or present a more complex idea.
Keep your user in mind. Make sure that everything that you are presenting has value and that there is an ever present “next step”.
4. The Ever-Important Call-To-Action
In website design, CTA’s must psychologically lead the visitor to clicking on the button that will take them to a landing page, and you chance to collect valuable contact info. The buttons need to convey curiosity and establish a certain amount of mystique within them. Your CTA’s need to provide a value to the visitor that he or she cannot produce themselves. After all, that’s why you are in business in the first place.
The messaging on the CTA must target to that visitors point current need in their own terms. Graphically, the most important word(s) in that messaging need to be brought out. Images need to be hyper relevant to the offer.
Colors of the CTA should probably contrast with the colors of your website so that they stand out. Especially for the higher conversion points such as requesting a quote or free consultation. If your website is primarily blue, use orange in your CTA; if green, try using purple in your CTA. Be sure to A/B test so that you can be sure to improve results over time.
And finally, don’t forget shadowing. A CTA “button” should appear to be clickable. Try adding dimension to your CTA’s to make the visitor feel like they are pushing a button to click through to the landing page.
5. Appeal to the Visual Mind with Photos
Humans are visual creatures; the pictures they see are more important than the words they read. The human mind is also particular about the pictures it sees.
According to an article published in the Marketing Experiments Blog, the first internet based research lab to conduct experiments in optimizing marketing and sales processes, website visitors respond more positively to photos of real people associated with the company versus generic stock photos.
These researchers showed pictures of two spokespersons to a group of website visitors; one pictured a stock photo of a smiling woman wearing headphones and the other was the recognizable CEO of the company. Visitors to the website were 35 percent more likely to sign up for free consultations when shown the actual CEO.
Use high quality photos. Advances in digital photography make it possible to produce unlimited photo types for your website. If you find yourself forced to use stock images because you cannot create the images yourself, avoid using cliché photos or photos so staged they look fake. If the images a noticeably fake, it reflects on the authenticity of your brand and your solutions.
One further tip: be sure you are using photos that should appeal your buyer personas. This should be in age, gender, location, income level, etc. For example, if targeting a homeowner in Houston, TX, pine trees and mountains surrounding the home may not be ideal. As mountains in Houston are non-existent and pine trees aren’t exactly the norm, it would be hard to connect with that target market with these type of images.
6. Keep Load Time to a Minimum
Keep load time in mind – people do not like to wait for a website to load. A New York Times article reports that people will visit a company’s website less often if it loads 250 milliseconds slower than a competitor’s website. Restrict load time to three seconds on the average PC and one second for mobile by keeping the number of large graphics to a minimum. Compress photographs and graphics as much as possible without losing visual quality. It’ll also make your web developers happy.
Integrating psychology principals into web design optimizes visitor experience. Applying what scientists know about human psychology to web design enhances the effects of an inbound marketing strategy, improves a visitors overall experience with your company, and lends itself to an increased number of conversions on your site.
Image Credit: boagworld
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