Don’t Make Me Think

Don’t Make Me Think

Billboards are rarely compared to websites, and for good reason. However, they do have one thing in common: user/viewer attention span. Twenty-five percent of all users will exit a website if it doesn’t load within 4 seconds, similar to the 2 seconds a viewer has to see a billboard. The book “Don’t Make Me Think” by Steve Krug discusses reasons why people will exit out of your website—namely, a lack of engagement.

Do your users “Get It” at first glance?
Your company ID or logo and main message should be the first thing that a visitor to your site sees. It should be so readily visible that it passes the squint test—identifying this information even while squinting. No deducing, guessing, or even thinking should be required by the user.

People are in a hurry
Users are in a hurry when searching the web. Users often scan the information, rather than read large bodies of text. That is why bulleted information and bolded text can be used to your advantage. Also don’t be afraid to bold content text as well.

-When wording navigation items, people don’t want to think about each link. Therefore, if you want people to click on the jobs page, make sure the link doesn’t say “employment opportunities” but rather “jobs”.

-Another way to keep people’s interest is keep main text top heavy. Essentially, this is including important text first rather than “Click Here To…” before the important text.

Easy ways to fix your website
-Get Rid of Content
Including more visuals, and less text will always keep your user more engaged.

-White Space
If your homepage doesn’t pass the squint text, making items bigger won’t always do much good. Creating space around the main call to action or main headline will help to improve visibility.

-Use Headers and Bullets to Make Skimming Easy
Bold headers and clear bullets draw the reader’s attention directly to the information you want to highlight. This makes skimming much easier to do and allows them to quickly decide what information they will read.

-Take Yourself Out Of The Equation
By thinking what the customer wants to find out, you can identify the most important information to include ‘above the fold.’

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About Michael Pickett
Michael Pickett is a graphic and web designer living in the Cleveland, Ohio area. His focus is to create effective websites and marketing materials in order to maximize brand recognition in the mind of the consumers.