A well-designed website is one of the most critical components of a successful online presence.
Research has shown that the appearance of a website directly impacts consumers’ perception of a brand, with visually stunning design encouraging web visitors to see a business as trustworthy, quality-oriented, or aspirational. Furthermore, a well-thought-out layout can drive conversions and customer loyalty, both of which are important for the longevity of a business.
But, the one thing that many business owners fail to understand is just how instantaneously web design impacts brand perception. Research from the past decade uncovered that:
- It takes less than 50 milliseconds for web visitors to form an opinion about a business based on web design.
- A favorable first impression has a positive impact on overall customer satisfaction. And;
- It only takes web visitors 6 seconds to find the most influential element on your website.
In other words, if you wish to impress potential customers with the appearance of your website (which you definitely should try to do), you only have a short amount of time to do so. So, the best strategy you can employ is to do your best to design a website that resonates with your audience.
If you’re ready to do just that, here are the steps that will allow you to achieve your desired results, accomplish impressive conversion rates, and provide your leads with a stellar CX throughout their buyer’s journey.
Define Your Target Audience
If you’re aiming to design a website that resonates with your target audience, the first thing you have to do is, well, define that audience.
In most cases, this is easier said than done — especially if you’re launching a new business. Nonetheless, you can start with those audience characteristics you already know, like your potential customer’s pain points, age, gender, location, and interests. Then, you can move on to more intricate details, like their family status and financial situation.
For instance, a brand offering investing news and tools, like MarketBeat, would naturally want to target people interested in becoming investors themselves. It would thus optimize its website to appeal to business-oriented individuals.
In MarketBeat’s case, the brand does this by using design features such as news tickers and charts, which appeal to its target audience and make investors more likely to perceive the brand as a credible resource of investment-related information.
On the other hand, already established businesses can use existing analytical data to define target audiences (and their preferences).
So, a brand running PPC campaigns on Google could choose to test consumer interest in a particular type of solution by testing several different ad versions. Or, they could look at the demographic data of their web visitors and social media followers to identify what age groups, locations, and genders seem most likely to convert. Then, these businesses can use the information to reinforce certain design elements or make changes to create a website that appeals to a broader audience.
Create Content for Each Stage of the Sales Funnel
Once you’ve identified the people you want your website to appeal to, it’s time to start segmenting your audience. After all, it’s unlikely that every single one of your prospects will be in the same stage of the buyer’s journey.
To ensure that your website resonates with your prospects and inspires them to convert, you will want to create content for each stage of the sales funnel.
When targeting people in the top stage of the sales funnel, you’re essentially trying to make people aware that there’s a solution to their pain points.
Traditionally, the best way to do this is by investing in content marketing. Publish posts that educate your audience, like this guide to preventing knee pain while running, posted on the Kinetic Revolution website.
Even though the business aims to convert clients ready to invest in a comprehensive training program, it still gives away a host of information in this article for free. The strategy here is to attract prospects with high-quality content, gain their trust, then subtly nudge them towards converting into leads by encouraging them to:
- Download a free guide. And;
- Invest in a comprehensive paid training program that will elevate their fitness level.
People in the evaluation stage will already know that there’s a solution to their needs and will most likely be looking for information that could help them make the best purchase decision possible. So, if you’re looking to optimize your website to resonate with this audience segment, invest in content or landing pages that provide these customers with actionable advice.
A quick look at the Eachnight Mattress Quiz shows how effectively the brand does this.
Firstly, the brand gives web visitors an interactive and time-efficient way to identify the best product for their needs. Plus, it also highlights that the quiz was developed in collaboration with an orthopedic surgeon. That way, potential buyers know they can trust the results of the quiz, making them more likely to buy.
Finally, as you start designing web pages that will resonate with people in the final stage of the sales funnel, you can start doing more to encourage web visitors to convert.
In addition to optimizing your CTA buttons (and repeating them on key pages), do your best to include social proof and trust signals which will further encourage prospects to become clients.
The Cheap Tickets page on Scott’s Cheap Flights is an example of a page intended to appeal to people in the bottom stages of the funnel. The low-cost tickets guide is filled with CTAs inviting web visitors to take action. Plus, it also includes a handy preview of the brand’s service, along with a few real-world examples of deals customers have managed to snag thanks to their subscription.
Address Customer Pain Points and Offer Solutions
The third step towards designing a website that resonates with your target audience is to use the right communication tactics.
Whether your website is minimalistic, maximalist, futuristic, or just a one-page presentation, ensure that its elements speak directly to your potential customers.
And what’s the best way to do this, you might ask? It’s quite simple. All you have to do is use elements that directly address your prospects’ pain points. Then, offer solutions through a benefit-oriented approach.
Don’t make the mistake of simply showing off your products and expecting web visitors to realize their benefits on their own accord. Instead, make it crystal clear you understand your target audience’s needs and describe how you can help.
For a great example, check out the Keeper homepage. By asking web visitors if they’ve “Forgotten [their] password,” the business hits the nail right on the head and guarantees that people instantly recognize the brand as one that could solve their frustrations regarding password management.
Or, for a slightly more conversion-oriented approach, take inspiration from Fenty Beauty. This brand knows it’s an industry leader in creating inclusive make-up products. That’s why it consistently calls web visitors’ attention to new foundation shades, ensuring that people recognize it as a business committed to nurturing diversity in an otherwise noninclusive environment.
Ensure a Stellar User Experience
In some cases, designing a website that resonates with your audience won’t be about aesthetic choices but user experience instead.
After all, how your site performs directly impacts how your audience perceives your brand and how willing they will be to interact with your online presentation.
For example, research has shown that website load times that exceed 3 seconds on mobile have a 90% greater probability of a bounce when compared to sites that load in under 3 seconds. Furthermore, statistical data shows that 51.42% of all web traffic in the US comes from mobile devices, signaling how important it is for your site to be responsive.
Then, there are the research findings the NN Group published, which show that web users don’t read online word for word. Instead, they scan texts for relevant information. Furthermore, the same organization discovered that people focus on the first screenful of the page, showing just how important it is to properly position content on your website.
Finally, don’t underestimate the impact of well-chosen visuals. Images and videos don’t just attract web visitors’ attention. They could also be the key to helping your target audience comprehend your value proposition, form emotional bonds with your brands, and boost the chances of them remembering your business and the solutions it offers.
Employ Personalization Tactics
If you’re trying to design a website that resonates with your target audience in 2022 and beyond, remember this: people don’t want to interact with generic sites. In fact, the research team from McKinsey found that 71% of people expect brands to deliver personalized experiences. And 76% become frustrated when this doesn’t happen.
So, if you’re trying to appeal to your brand’s potential customers, try to use personalization techniques to ensure web visitors get a relevant browsing, reading, or shopping experience on your site.
Interactive content that gives your readers personalized advice — like this One Rep Max Calculator from Transparent Labs — is an excellent example of a feature that provides web visitors with unique value and allows them to easily access information relevant to their needs.
Or, if you’re looking for a slightly more sales-oriented example of personalization, look no further than L’Objet’s cross-selling website element, which gives shoppers recommendations on what products to buy to go with the item they’re currently looking at.
Test Key Web Design Elements to Maximize Effectiveness
Finally, as you explore tactics that will allow you to create a website that resonates with your target audience, remember that the only way to guarantee you’ve made the right design decisions is to test.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve changed the hero image on your homepage, updated the value proposition, added a personalization element, or optimized your content to match user intent. What matters is that, after making these changes, you go into your Google Analytics account to see how they’re impacting site performance.
In some cases, a boost in conversion rates, organic traffic, and page dwell time will clearly indicate you’re on the right path. But other times, your design upgrades won’t be as obviously beneficial. This means you’ll either have to give them some additional time to prove their worth or simply go back to the original design until you’ve zoomed in on the exact elements your audience will love.
There you have it, an easy-to-follow guide on how to create a website experience your target audience will appreciate.
As you can see, the vital step will be to identify the buyers whose attention you want to grab (as well as to define the goals you wish to reach). Once you’ve done that, you can make additional visual and UX design tweaks to create a stellar browsing experience guaranteed to drive conversions. Contact BosonHub for a custom quote on your project today!