The design of your website is important for so many reasons. It can affect where you appear in search results. It can engage customers and increase conversions, or turn visitors off and make them leave. Your website represents your brand – how well you know your customers, what you value and where you’re going.
Some of the essential website design components you should already have integrated into your website include:
- Mobile optimization: Mobile Internet usage occurs more often than desktop these days, and one-third of people use their smartphone as their primary Internet-accessing device
- Prominent customer service: More than 80 percent of customers leave companies because of bad customer service, and 86 percent of customers would pay more for a better customer experience
- SSL security: Sites that are not SSL-secure are now flagged by Google as being “Not Secure” in the URL bar, and 82 percent of customers will leave a site if it’s not secure
If you’re a business that wants to innovate and get a jump-start on competitors in website design, here are three notable trends to watch out for.
More consumers than ever are strapping on virtual reality headsets to immerse themselves in augmented worlds like never before. By 2020, the virtual and augmented reality market is expected to reach $162 billion. Some of the possibilities virtual reality (VR) provides businesses include ideas like:
- The ability to browse hotel rooms before booking
- The ability to try on clothes using your own avatar on retail sites
- The ability to take a virtual reality test drive as you’re shopping new cars
- The ability to interact with a map of a business location
- The ability to learn about a brand through immersive education
- The ability to play a game that has a branded theme
Dwindling attention spans can be captured and extended through engaging VR content. VR isn’t just infiltrating mobile experiences. Services like WebVR make a virtual reality experience possible while using a desktop computer, too. The 2018 Winter Olympics programming was broadcast in VR, which also opens the door for more immersive video content for businesses. Brands like Volvo, Oreo and TOMS are just a few that have executed successful VR campaigns.
Voice User Interaction
Alexa, Siri and Echo are a just a few virtual friends people have that are making robotic interactions more of an everyday occurrence than ever. Voice search and voice user interaction (voice UI) are predicted to become some of the most important search tools in the near future. Consider these stats:
- There will be an estimated 21.4 million smart speakers in the United States by 2020
- Comscore reports 50 percent of all searches will be voice searches by 2020
- Google voice searches in 2016 increased 35 times compared to those in 2008
Beyond creating your own voice-activated search assistant, businesses can integrate speech recognition into a website to make it work better for speech searches. The Voice Dictation app is a tool that enables developers to add voice recognition to a site.
Using SEO best practices is also crucial for a website to be optimized for voice search. Think about what customers might be using voice search for related to your business. They might be asking for when you’re open, what your address is and how much your products are. Voice search success means your business needs to play nice with optimizing your site for Google Local Search, too.
If you’ve ever interacted with a Facebook Chatbot, you’ve experienced the power of artificial intelligence (AI) first-hand. Chatbots are just one example of how AI can transform business web experiences. By observing behaviors of a user, the website journey becomes more relevant and personal, which can engage users and increase conversions. Some examples of AI on a website include:
- Promotional pop-up offers based on previous browsing history
- Customized web pages based on user demographics
- Chatbots that can answer questions and provide recommendations while users are shopping
- Integration with marketing efforts – for example, an abandoned shopping cart triggers an email with a discount offer
Personalization is important to shoppers today, and AI helps your business achieve that. More than 75 percent of consumers are more likely to buy from a brand that acknowledges them personally, recommends products based on past purchases, or knows their purchase history. AI can help you meet these objectives.
Need a Website Refresh?
Your website is often your first impression in the digital world. Are you making the right one? If your business wants to increase conversions with better website design, AlphaMind Studios can help. Get in touch for a free website design consultation so you can stay on the pulse of what’s trending.