Web Interface Design – tips, techniques, results

What contributes to best results in web interface design?

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Usable, functional and accessible design approach allows web users to interact with your web site or application at a different level. Lets consider scenarios where user A attempts to proceed through a typical path through a website from home page to confirmation screen. Our typical path will consist of the following screens:

a. Home page
b. Product listing or search result screen
c. Product detail screen
d. Shopping cart view
e. Checkout screen with login
f. New users – register screen
g. New users – register confirmation screen
h. New users -payment screen
i. Conformation screen
j. Thank you page

Following sequence is what is typically used when creating web interface design for ecommerce applications. What is important to note is that the process described above is a more or less standardized. Typical visitors have accumulated between 5 to 10 years of experience in online shopping many have certain level of expectations that web interface design will not deviate too much from the path they know. Move any of the steps around and the results will significantly vary.

What can be done to improve or at least not to lower results of your website or application?

a. Always establish if the application or your type of website is a common or unique. Do users have expectations when using your website based on similar sites?
b. Determine typical paths of movement of users through the site.
c. Draw a diagram of movement of users through your competition sites and try to identify weak points where users can leave the site
d. Draw your diagram in 2 versions -Version A and Version B. Make version A be consistent with standard or most logical scenario and Version B as an alternative path
e. Make necessary coding changes to ensure you can test A / B options
f. Explain your users from the first page to expect how many steps they need to go through to reach final result
g. Ensure that last screens in your process have fewer and fewer distracting information to reduce % of users that do not go all the way
h. Include google analytics code and set applicable goals to be able to collect statistics.

After running your campaign and website for certain period of time web interface design may need to be altered and it is better to be prepared for that from the start. Typical A/ B testing approach should be followed and will reveal more or less effective solution.

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