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How to Keep Visitors on Your Website Longer

The more time a potential customer spends on your website, the likelier it is that they will contact you, visit your office, buy your products, or use your services. 

But what does it take to keep visitors on your website longer? And how do you ensure that they take a closer look at your offerings, and don’t briefly skim through the headings and click away? Let’s find out the answers in this article.

Treat Headings Like a table of Content

Most of your website visitors won’t read your page like a book, attentively from top to bottom. They’ll start by scrolling down, scanning the headings, looking for a section that seems most relevant. 

Suddenly, your page headings become a table of content your visitors check to see what ‘chapter’ they want to read, and they will only start reading when they see a ‘chapter title’ that seems relevant. 

Can you guess what happens if your ‘table of contents’ is vague, and your visitors don’t understand what each section is about? 

Right, they leave.

To make your visitors stay on your page longer: 

Use unambiguous titles to clearly communicate what each section is about. 

Not like this: Here’s the key / What does this mean? / Why?

But like this: My services / About / Happy clients 

Use typical phrasing to reduce the time and effort it takes to process the info.
Not like this: A writer turned copywriter / Here’s what I can do for you
But like this: About me / Services / Get in touch

Reduce Visual Clutter

When designing your website, it is crucial to take into account the scarcity of attention. The main reason for your visitors leaving your website is that they easily lose attention on your website.

Our brains receive 11 million bits of data per second when human beings are only able to process 50 bits per second. It’s physically impossible to pay attention to everything. 

Here’s where inattention blindness comes in. The user’s brain goes on autopilot and only sees what is relevant to it. Entire pieces of the interface or product go unnoticed even if they are right in front of the user’s eye. This is important information to keep in mind throughout your website design process.

To avoid it, only provide customers with what they need, and ensure your website is easy to scan. For example, if you design a job board, customers ultimately just want to get hired; if you design a teapot, customers ultimately just want to have a cup of tea.

It is key you get familiar with the concept of working memory. It is a cognitive system in our brain that holds information temporarily. It is like the RAM of our computers – they are used to process information, but they empty when the task is done. 

For example, when making equations like (25 + 37)/2, you are using your working memory to actually do the operation and retain the numbers you’ve calculated to obtain the solution. Information in working memory has a short duration, something like 10-15 seconds (unless it is actively rehearsed) and has a storage capacity of 5-7 “elements” or “chunks” of information. 

How much is your website taking up? As website designers, we have to reduce cognitive loads. Users’ working memory has a limited capacity and duration, and part of it is probably already occupied by other activities. 

The easiest workaround is to trigger the information already stored in long-term memory, crafting simple, intuitive, and familiar designs. Don’t over-deliver, keep your design quiet, and use a chunking strategy delivering the right content at just the right time.

Create Compelling Content That Sticks With Your Visitors

Content that engages, educates or entertains your visitors not only keeps them longer on your website once but over multiple sessions if you create consistent content.

You need to build a relationship with your future client and you can only do this by providing the content that they really want to consume. Once they have found you and decided that what you offer is what they want, they will start spending more time on your website.

To create compelling content, you first need to know who you are creating it for. Who do you want to reach with your content? Who is your ideal client? This may differ from one content form to another or you might have an exact client avatar that you always speak to. You should, however, consider this before starting work on your content. Remember, if you are trying to appeal to everyone you will appeal to no one.

People read, listen, and watch very differently on the internet than outside it.

Think about how you read on the web. You scan. You may even have just jumped to the bold text in the previous sentence simply because it stood out. You look for exactly what YOU want, and if you don’t find it in eight seconds, you click.

Romulus Dynamics is a Human-Centered Web Design Agency

We not only create elegant, responsive, and mobile-friendly websites but websites that drive conversions and growth. Our design focuses on the end-user which bridges the gap between you and your visitors.

If you need help with a website or your digital strategy, go ahead and reach out to Romulus Dynamics today!

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