Here’s Why 9 Out of 10 People Leave Your Website
By Newtek One
January 5, 2024
Web design is an often underutilized member retention tool. But when you master it, it can have a remarkable impact on your business.
The impact of your website’s design can make or break your member’s impression of your business. In fact, 94% of users leave a website because of poor design, and 75% of those users admit to making judgments on a company's credibility based on the company's website design alone. So, as a credit union, your website's design is essential. It can leave a positive, lasting impression on users or drive them away.
Common Web Design Mistakes
Before we explore the best web design practices, we must first examine mistakes we often find in web designs. Here are some design practices that drive away users.
Taking Inspiration From Your Competitors
A common challenge is the tendency to look solely within your industry for design ideas. It's hard to know where to start when you're just beginning. So, when building that foundation, looking for inspiration from your competitors is normal. However, it's crucial to understand that the best way to serve individuals visiting and engaging with your site is not by catering to your industry but to your clients. Shift your perspective away from your industry and prioritize the needs of our users as you begin to develop or redesign your website. Ask yourself, "How can I best serve my user?"
A Cluttered Design
If you're going to know one thing, you need to know: your users don't read. Users will only skim through your page, using visual anchors like headlines, eye-catching images, and interactive elements to guide their eyes. So, when you cram too much information without giving users anchors to guide them to the information they need, they'll feel overwhelmed and stop interacting with your website at all.
When your users visit your page, they usually know what they need from you. As a credit union, it might be to log in to their online banking dashboard, find an ATM, or check out what other services you can provide them. But when they land on your website, they might feel lost or left wondering where to find any information. The login prompt may be hidden or hard to find, or a featured promo lacks a button that quickly leads them to the details. Your users rely on your guidance, and without clear direction, they may struggle to find what they're looking for.
The Best Practices
User data and behavior analysis are crucial for website design. When designing or redesigning your site, here are a couple of best practices to consider:
Catch Their Attention
For most websites, you only have 15 seconds to convince your user to stay on your site. For credit unions, the users that stay past those 15 seconds average a full duration visit of 2 minutes and 19 seconds in 2019. Meaning you have to strategically place your most engaging and useful content at the most visible part of your site. Remember, don’t overwhelm your user, so focus your messaging and commit to it. Don’t let that precious time go to waste.
Keep Your Users in Control
When your user visits your page they expect to be in control of what they see and how they navigate your site. If your site is challenging to navigate, you risk losing your users. Ensure that users can effortlessly return to their previous location using the back button. Avoid redirecting them to a new browser or surprising them with unexpected pop-ups when they press a command. Make sure they seamlessly navigate through your site.
Keeping Up With Member Needs
Regularly adapting your website to suit your user needs is fundamental to maintaining an effective website. For financial institutions like credit unions, utilizing microsites can be a useful tool to fit all necessary messaging in your site, without overwhelming your user. TD Bank’s website is a great example of this. Their page with the highest traffic is their login page, which they use like a microsite to deliver a focused message to their audience. TD Bank understands the volume of traffic makes this page the best placement for these messages. So rather than letting someone just enter and skip a message, they take you to a clean page with a clear login, with a couple of target messages.
Fill Your Page With Quality Content
As we previously mentioned, users tend to skim through rather than read website content, emphasizing the importance of relevant and high-quality content. Make sure to tailor your copy to their skimming tendencies. Your users will skim through the page, so the copy must be catered to them. Making sure the headlines are both accurate and engaging, and that any messaging is focused will enhance the likelihood of your user reading through the rest of the site’s content.
Test Your Site Often
Making sure your website’s fully functional is paramount. The likelihood of users continuing to engage with your page after a poor experience is significantly low. Research indicates that 88% of users claim they would never return to a site after a poor experience. Therefore, an optimized and user-friendly website plays a crucial role in determining a user’s level of engagement and likelihood of returning. Most businesses update their sites around 6 times a year. This is a continuous learning process, where site owners learn what works best for their users and optimize their site around this knowledge. Redesigning your site once a year or every other year is no longer considered best practices; instead iterative changes are the best approach.
Above All – Do UX Research
The easiest way to understand what your users need from your site is to ask. Prioritize UX research to understand your users' genuine needs from your site. There are plenty of ways to gather UX data, like conducting surveys or implementing trail runs of your websites with prompts to see how your users actually interact with your site. By actively gathering user input, you can accurately tailor your site to meet their expectations and enhance the overall user experience.
Whether your page is in the early stages of development or needs a redesign, ensure you’re implementing these best practices on your website. Don’t miss out on potential clients; reevaluate your website to ensure it aids in retaining members, not losing them. No other marketing asset gets as much attention as your website, so leverage outcomes by continually learning and optimizing, much like how we used to ensure perfection in our physical branches for our clients by meticulously curating the environment, layout, and furniture to create an ideal experience. We invested in our physical spaces; now, we have to have the same commitment to our online presence.
Businesses expect more and NewtekOne (NASDAQ: NEWT) delivers core solutions that help businesses grow. As a partner, NewtekOne provides SBA lending services, business financing, merchant processing, payroll, insurance and website/technology services that credit unions can offer to members.