I like to think that whoever designed my inherited washing machine sat down and said to themselves:
“How can I make this look as complicated as possible?”
I assume that their thought process was to make it convoluted and over loaded with useless features so that it looks more sophisticated (and thus more expensive).
Why else would my washing machine look like the cockpit of a space shuttle?
Does anyone really use all of those features?
Obviously usability took a back seat when they designed my washing machine.
Unfortunately, we don’t have the luxury of ignoring usability with our websites.
Website visitors are fickle. They don’t have any patience when they’re browsing websites.
If your website is hard to use, they’ll click that back button within a few seconds.
Website Usability (UX) is an entire field in itself, so I can’t teach you all about it in this short email, but to sum it up:
There are three questions that each page on your website needs to answer instantly for each visitor:
Go through your website and take a look at some of your pages.
Does each page on your website answer those three questions for a hypothetical visitor?
If so, you’re doing pretty good. Much better than General Electric.
The Takeaway: Look through pages on your website and pretend that you’re one of your prospects. Is it easy to use? Ask yourself the above three questions and assess what (if anything) you need to change to make your website easier to use.