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15 Ways Small Businesses Can Improve Their Website Design for a Better Customer Experience

7 Mins read

In the digital age, a well-designed website is crucial for small businesses looking to enhance customer experience. From optimizing for mobile accessibility to creating interactive landing pages, we’ve gathered fifteen invaluable tips from SEO consultants, CEOs, and other industry experts. Dive into this comprehensive guide to discover how to elevate your online presence.

Optimize for Mobile Accessibility

One effective way for small businesses to improve their website design for a better customer experience is by focusing on mobile optimization and the usability of their site. Designing a site that acts as a key sales window while also providing primary information about your products and services is key to converting more users and generating more leads. 

Mobile optimization not only enhances the user experience by making it easier for customers to navigate the website, read content, and interact with various elements without zooming or scrolling horizontally, but it also contributes to better search engine rankings, as search engines like Google prioritize mobile-friendly websites in their search results. 

By implementing a mobile-optimized design, small businesses can ensure that their website is accessible and appealing to a broader audience, ultimately leading to increased engagement, higher customer satisfaction, and improved conversion rates.

Kev Wiles, SEO Consultant, Kev Wiles

Minimize Intrusive Pop-Ups

The best thing you can do for your mobile CX is to take a hatchet to any pop-ups that might be present that aren’t 100% necessary, like a GDPR notice. They might be somewhat unobtrusive on desktop, which is debatable in my opinion, but on smaller mobile screens, they are the height of anti-customer design. 

They usually lag behind other elements, leading to accidental clicks; they cover comparatively more of the screen and are therefore more invasive; and there are usually more than one that populates at a time, so rather than seeing your splash page, they just see a bunch of pop-ups. It is a terrible way to start an interaction and should be minimized at all costs. Or, at the very least, made so unobtrusive that they can be ignored if the user chooses to.

Kate Kandefer, CEO, SEOwind

Leverage a Content Delivery Network

One way small businesses can enhance their website design for a better customer experience is by using a CDN (Content Delivery Network). A CDN helps by storing files and scripts on its servers instead of your hosting server, making your site load faster. This ensures that users won’t leave your site due to slow-loading pages. It also boosts your Core Web Vitals score, a factor Google uses to rank sites in searches.

Additionally, a CDN improves website security, reducing the risk of DDoS attacks. There are a number of different CDN providers available, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Some of the most popular CDN providers for small businesses include Cloudflare, Bunny CDN, and Fastly.

Mohammad Arman, Local Marketer, Mohammad Arman

Design for Touch-Friendly Interaction

I’d recommend focusing on making your site design as touch-friendly as possible. This means that all of your elements should be quite large and well-spaced enough to prevent any accidental clicks, as there is nothing quite so annoying when mobile browsing as trying to find the sweet spot on a button prompt. 

You will also want to make sure your site isn’t so twitchy that trying to scroll up or down rockets the user around or moves the page unduly if they’re trying to drag down their top bar to click on some options. Generally speaking, just make sure you’re not trying to cram the maximum possible amount of content on mobile, as that will be a major turn-off from a CX perspective.

Dragos Badea, CEO, Yarooms

Ensure Easy Contact Accessibility

Improving the customer experience requires seamless communication and accessibility. Avoid making the mistake of not including a prominent “Contact” button or phone number in your website’s top navigation. 

I’ve received positive feedback from businesses that appreciated how easy it was to contact me, and ultimately chose my services because all the necessary information was readily available and easily accessible. Ensure that your customers have the same level of convenience, which will foster a positive impression of your business.

Jemma Wiltshire, Business Owner, Jemma Wiltshire Design

Incorporate Customer Feedback

Based on our experience as an agency, one effective way to enhance a small business’s website design for an improved customer experience is by actively seeking and incorporating feedback from the customers themselves. A simple yet efficient method to achieve this is through the utilization of surveys. 

For us, this is the best way since clients know it better—we might see our websites perfectly, but by presenting clients with a short questionnaire that focuses on their interactions and experiences with the website, businesses can gain invaluable insight into areas that may need improvement. These could range from user interface improvements and navigation ease to website loading speeds. We believe that clients are the end-users of these sites, and their feedback often provides a real-world perspective that can significantly influence positive design alterations.

Tristan Harris, Demand Generation Senior Marketing Manager, Thrive Digital Marketing Agency

Integrate a Subtle AI Assistant

An unconventional yet effective way for small businesses to enhance website design is by integrating a subtle, AI-driven virtual assistant. During a redesign for our SaaS platform, we implemented a low-key chatbot that intuitively guided users through common queries. This unobtrusive assistant not only provided instant support but also gathered valuable data on user preferences. 

The unexpected result was a more personalized user experience, as the chatbot adapted to individual needs over time. This small addition improved overall customer satisfaction and engagement, emphasizing the potential of discreet AI elements to elevate the user experience on small business websites.

Ashwin Ramesh, CEO, Synup

Utilize Heat-Mapping for Design Insights

One way that small businesses can significantly improve their website design for a better customer experience is by utilizing heat-mapping tools. These tools provide a visual representation of where users are clicking and scrolling on your site, enabling business owners to understand what is catching the visitors’ attention.

For instance, let’s say your heat map indicates that users are not scrolling all the way to the end of the page. This might suggest that your most crucial information or call to action is getting lost. In my personal experience, placing key content “above the fold”—the part of the page visible without scrolling—has drastically improved the engagement rate. Users usually decide if a site is worth their time within the first few seconds, so it’s critical to captivate them immediately. 

Tailoring website design based on these insights can significantly enhance the user experience and, in turn, drive conversions.

David Rubie-Todd, Co-Founder and Marketing Director, Glide

Recruit Local Student Designers

It’s really expensive to hire designers; the other option is to become more skilled yourself, but that requires tons of time. Small business owners have neither cash nor time, unfortunately. 

One solution is to find local students. They are much more skilled than they get credit for, and best of all, they love to help small businesses, since their work will have an actual and instant impact on a real business.

Behrang Bandali, Founder, Freaky Sauces

Embrace Simplicity and Intuitive Navigation

To enhance the customer experience, one significant improvement could involve embracing the power of simplicity. By decluttering their website, businesses can ensure that customers are not overwhelmed with information but rather are guided smoothly toward their goals, be it learning about a service or making a purchase.

Implementing intuitive navigation is another transformative step for small businesses. A well-structured, hierarchical menu with clear labels drastically improves users’ ability to find what they’re looking for without frustration. Complement this with a responsive design optimized for a range of devices, and customers will have a seamless interaction whether they’re on a desktop or on the go with their mobile devices.

These enhancements not only serve to engage but also retain customers in today’s competitive online marketplace.

Finn Wheatley, Executive Consultant of Data and Technology, Xtrium

Showcase Core Features Clearly

Excellent web design is vital to conveying Help Monks’ easy collaboration value over its flashier rivals. We laser-focus on crisply showcasing core shared-mailbox capabilities upfront rather than getting lost in generic claims or overloading navigation menus.

We tapped into customer analytics to determine popular content sections and reorganized the site architecture accordingly. Our UI/UX lead constantly A/B tests new layouts and styles, iterating on conversions. We even shortened our pricing page copy by 65% to distill complex commercial messaging into digestible, skimmable chunks, driving higher free trial sign-ups.

Small, bootstrapped companies that are just starting out need to take website design seriously and most definitely can’t afford clutter or confusion in selling their solution.

Nitai Aventaggiato, Founder and CEO, Helpmonks

Use White Space Effectively

Using white space effectively is a key web design practice. Many people think white space is just empty space that should be filled up. But actually, white space is really important. It gives parts of your site room and makes it easier for people to look at your site. When your design isn’t too crowded and uses white space well, it looks elegant, sophisticated, and simple.

White space is also crucial for making things easy to read. If everything on your site is packed together, it’s hard to look at and understand. Putting enough white space around text, headlines, and images makes your site feel more open and makes your content more welcoming and easier to read.

Plus, you can use white space in a smart way to guide people’s eyes and show them what’s most important. By putting more space around key parts of your site or grouping things that go together, you can draw attention to the most important parts of your design. This helps get your message across better and guides users through your site the way you want them to go.

Precious Abacan, Marketing Director, Softlist

Include a Dropdown FAQ Section

Instead of creating long, drawn-out pages filled with excessive amounts of text, create a dropdown FAQ section where you only display the common questions customers ask. This way, the website visitor is able to quickly see the question they want an answer to and click on it to display the text.

Jason Vaught, President, 805 SEO

Display Social Proof Prominently

Integrating social proof is a powerful tactic for small businesses looking to improve their website design and customer experience. As the CEO of Simply Noted, I recommend including testimonials, customer reviews, and case studies prominently on the site. 

This form of validation from other customers helps build trust and credibility, giving potential buyers confidence in their decision-making. By strategically placing these endorsements, small businesses can demonstrate the value of their offerings and the satisfaction of their current clients, which can be a crucial deciding factor for new visitors considering their services or products.

Rick Elmore, CEO, Simply Noted

Create Interactive Landing Pages

Small businesses can significantly enhance the customer experience on their websites by creating interactive landing pages.

These pages engage visitors through facts and interactive videos, making the user’s journey more engaging and personalized. This approach captures the user’s attention and increases the time spent on the site, potentially leading to higher conversion rates.

To implement this effectively, focus on simplicity and relevance to your audience. Make sure to include CTAs (calls-to-action) and links wherever necessary. Track success by monitoring engagement metrics, like click-through rates and time spent on the page.

Madhurima Halder, Content Manager, Recruit CRM

Brett Farmiloe is the founder of Featured, a Q&A platform that connects brands with expert insights.

Website design stock image by ronstik/Shutterstock

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