Semalt: What Does Website Usability Audit Include?
Every entrepreneur operating in the Internet area wants his / her website to be well perceived by Internet users and to bring the expected results. Unfortunately, the competition is enormous at the moment. Today, only websites that really work well can exist. Therefore, website owners are constantly trying to refine and improve them.
Unfortunately, sometimes even the improvements made do not have a significant impact on the visibility and traffic on a given website. Fortunately, research methods have been developed to make it easier for e-entrepreneurs to determine the nature of errors, even when basic Internet marketing is not working. Thanks to this, it is possible to eliminate key errors and adapt the website to the needs of the users (UX audit).
One of the methods to achieve the goals of an Internet business is a professional UX audit.
A UX audit, or usability audit, is a precise evaluation of what is happening on a given website. The website is thoroughly evaluated in terms of usability, and user behavior and preferences are also checked. UX audits allow you to check whether a given website meets the needs of the recipients. With the help of UX analysis, you can take measures to improve the functioning of the website. The main objective of the UX audit is to effectively improve the quality of the website and increase user satisfaction. Moreover, UX audit brings many possibilities and chances for your website, so don't wait and decide on UX audit.
What does the UX audit include?
The complete audit includes, among other things the:
- entire structure and elements of the website, including its composition, readability, the wording used;
- navigation system used on the website;
- manner in which the site provides information to the user;
- usefulness of the forms made available;
- graphic design;
- layout and appearance of the buttons or elements clicked on a given page;
- mobile version and its functioning;
- nuances of the site from the users' point of view.
The most important elements affecting conversion: the higher the conversion, the higher the benefits generated by the website. So do not ignore the conversion rate.
Of course, after the UX analysis, the website owner receives a full report. After receiving such a report, first of all, during the UX audit, many business entities thoroughly analyze the usability tests. The data presented in the report concerns the determination of whether a given website has, for example, critical errors, average errors, basic errors, weaknesses. The purpose of the audit is to identify real problems and to give the possibility to prevent them in the future.
Each audit can be carried out using different methods. The three main methods for this purpose are the:
- heuristic evaluation;
- cognitive journey, i.e. research with the cognitive journey method;
- usability checklist.
However, you should know that when researching the effectiveness of websites, at least two methods of analysis should be used. Do not wait and follow the principles of usability.
Testing against heuristics, i.e. heuristic analysis, is an expert analysis capable of determining the sensitivity of a given page to specific threats or risks. Various decision methods as well as weighing methods are used for heuristic analysis. Weighing methods include, but are not limited to, multi-criteria analysis (MCA for short). The method is very different from statistical analysis, which is based on available statistical data. Many computer antivirus programs are subjected to heuristic testing in order to discover previously unknown computer viruses that pose a potential threat to a given website. Currently, heuristic analysis is very important for online sales.
Another method used by UX auditing is cognitive wandering. Cognitive journey is the method of evaluating a website or application from the perspective of new users. For websites to be effective, most new users learn the new system empirically, that is, by testing it in practice. The easiest way to do this is usually to learn about your site through a method called trial and error. Through this, it is possible to analyze user experiences, define customer expectations and define the user's role.
The checklist is a kind of work facilitation. With such a sheet, it is much easier to check the schedule of activities planned during the ux audit. This method is effective in helping to ensure consistency in the study.
Good site operation
Nowadays, almost everyone tracks the traffic on their website or pages. Of course, there are people who are satisfied with the basic data provided by e.g. Google Analytics after an SEO audit. Others prefer a more advanced analysis and carefully analyze the behavior of individual users on their website.
For a successful website today, a detailed analysis is essential. No wonder many website owners regularly use high-performance tools such as the Dedicated SEO Dashboard to track their site's position in search engine results. Indeed, the SEO Dedicated Dashboard is an all-in-one SEO tool with several features that allow you to drive a website to perform well and be visible in search engines.
For more information on this tool, you can visit demo.semalt.com.
So, let's also note that tests and UX audits are more and more realized, whose goal is to verify the adaptation of a given site to the needs of the users. The availability and proper functioning of the site are also evaluated.
The course of the examination of the correct operation of the Internet site:
The website crashes
Unfortunately, various types of failures sometimes occur. Sometimes they can manifest themselves as the complete unavailability of a given page or its individual elements. Unfortunately, the failure rate has a negative effect on the users' perception of the website. Such a website can lose the trust of potential customers and this will negatively affect the traffic to the website. A failure can be, for example: related to a database, adding products to the cart, or empty templates can appear on the website without any content. The user of such a website may get annoyed especially if he / she is really interested in its content. Page loading time also has a significant impact on user satisfaction. If, as a result of a failure, the website loses its loading speed, you, unfortunately, have to take into account that the patience of users is limited.
As a result, the website owner will lose users, and therefore his / her online sales profits will decrease. Unfortunately, the website may also lose its image and position in search engine listings.
A good solution influencing a quick response to website failures is the monitoring of a given website. Today, there are many monitoring options that give the owner the first chance to detect defects and failures. For example, the website owner uses an additional system that performs a page test from time to time. Then, if the program detects an irregularity, it immediately informs the site owner. Thanks to this, the owner can react quickly and solve the problem.
The information about the failures can be sent to the website owner, for example by SMS, e-mail or he / she can be informed by phone.
During these tests, the following elements are monitored, among others:
- website availability;
- speed / page speed;
- content, including loading and display accuracy;
- form operation;
- entire website and web application processes.
If the system detects a problem, it not only informs the website owner, but also prepares a report. Such a report usually contains detailed data analyzing the failure. In addition, users of this tool have access to the test history, which allows for statistical reporting. If a given failure occurs, the owner has the ability to exclude the factor that caused it. Eliminating the source of the failure may cause the failure to reoccur.
What to do to make the UX audit go well?
The above question is one that is asked very often by experts and website owners. Here are some tips to make sure your websites and online stores are working properly:
- provide effective error handling, if your website is not working properly, respond;
- give the user full control;
- maintain system compatibility;
- update the website;
- provide users with an easy opportunity to place an order;
- offer flexibility, e.g., allow to choose instead of forcing your users to click on individual page elements;
- place a contact form on the site;
- keep the page consistent;
- allow for ease of purchase;
- prevent errors on your website;
- check and display system status;
- monitor the conversion rate;
- perform a regular UX audit, i.e. usability test of the website.
By following the above-mentioned items, you will gain traffic to your online store. Moreover, thanks to the usability of the site, you will gain a good reputation in the eyes of consumers. A complete usability audit is an opportunity for your online store.
When looking for information about UX auditing, you may come across the concept of user experience design. The term user experience itself can be translated as user experience design. In practice, it is simply the totality of the impressions that the user gets when using an interactive product, for example, a website or an online store. Secondly, user experience design is a process aimed at increasing user satisfaction. Indeed, satisfaction is maximized by improving website functionality, enhancing usability, and supporting ease of use.
Today, almost every person in the world uses computers, laptops, phones, tablets with internet access on a daily basis, and therefore also websites. Users even unconsciously tend to evaluate the websites they visit. The user experience is designed to analyze the factors evaluated by the user. Thanks to this, it is possible to deduce the necessary corrections to a given site in order to build loyalty and trust in the users' feelings.
Website usability audit: to summarize
UX audit helps website and store owners operating in the network space. Often, as a website owner, you wonder why the website is not delivering the expected results and benefits. UX audit can help you find the causes of the problems. Don't wait to increase your conversion rate.
Also, through the website usability research, you can tell a lot about the user experience and fine-tune your website in terms of UX as it meets the needs of the web users. Nowadays, many online stores routinely perform UX audits, thanks to which website owners have the opportunity to react to possible errors and calmly focus on achieving the company's goals.
If you need to learn more about the subject of SEO and website promotion, we invite you to visit our Semalt blog.