07/28/10
Make Your “Thank You” Pages Work Harder For Your Website

It’s easy to the think of your “Thank You” pages as being the final resting place of website visitors after a well-executed online marketing strategy, but sadly this isn’t the case.

Actually, I shouldn’t use the word “sadly” as it opens up a whole host of new options for those keen to engage their online customers. Rather than saying thanks and holding the door open for them as they leave your virtual shopping area, we should be focusing on:

  • Strengthening the relationship

    shopkeeper-offering-toilet-roll

    Don't Let Customers Just Walk Away

  • Encouraging them to buy more
  • Suggesting they sign up for future offers
  • Giving them special treatment
  • Pointing them to complimentary services

Think of it as the start of a beautiful friendship! No doubt, you’ve worked darn hard to get them to that stage, so don’t go doing anything that might allow them to stray to a competitor website now.

Tweet Me | Like Me | Recommend Me

Start with a simple Quick-Win of integrating your Social Media accounts – suggest users sign up to your Facebook profile, Twitter profile or connect with your business via LinkedIn for mutually beneficial online business networking opportunities.

Dont ask for loads more personal information so that you can bloat your customer database with little demographics that will never get used but if you can get them to click a button to support your Social Media marketing campaign, then go for it!

No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

But you can give away free PDF guides or Wedinars as a final “Thank You”.

Avoid generic Thank You pages, tailor different customer journeys and purchases to make the customer feel like they have been genuinely assisted through the process.

Remember to try it, test it, improve it and never rest on your laurels (they chafe on the butt-ocks!)

07/08/09
Don’t Make Me Think!

This is one of the key phrases when it comes to user experience and usability testing on the web. Steve Krug even wrote a book on the subject using the same title.
Don't Make Me Think

So what is usability?

The ISO 9241-11 definition of usability states…

‘The extent to which a product can be used by specified users to achieve specified goals with effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction in a specified context of use.’

So basically in a nutshell this means you want your visitors to come to your site, find what they’re after (and potentially purchase) quickly and easily and leave your site feeling happy about the whole process. Happy customers means returning customers!

In a study undertaken by Jakob Nielson in 2003, following a thorough usability evaluation and a redesign based on the results, websites average increase in usability was 135%

Metric Average Improvement
Sales / Conversion rate 100%
Number of visitors 150%
Time taken to complete task 161%
Use of target features 202%

What do I need to do?

You’ve got a couple of options; you can either pay out a few thousand pounds to a company to run a usability test for you, or you can actually talk to your users!

It is critical to do two things: Identify and profile your users, and identify and profile their tasks.

Without identifying these two variables, how can you hope to have a website that’s usable to them and supports their needs? In effect, you would have ‘designed in the dark’ for them.

This all comes down to user-centred design and usability concepts, both of which we’ll be covering the basics of in our usability training courses that we’re currently developing.