Monday, March 12, 2018

Tunnel Vision of Website Visitors

Many business owners think customers read their website in logical order, like a book, but that's totally wrong.

Customers exhibit a type of tunnel vision, ignoring what is irrelevant to them. They skim and scan and skip everything that is not directly related to the problem or need they feel at the moment.

Thus, your website must clearly emphasize major concepts and topics that customers care about, helping them to be blind to irrelevant content and helping them to focus only on their immediate interest.

Special, idiosyncratic, personalized focus of customers is a big important part of website usability studies. One weird fact is that if a customer thinks a bit of content should be found in a certain spot on your website, they'll keep coming back to that spot, over and over again. It tends to be a vicious circle phenomenon.

You must make each page of your website focus on a specific topic, product, or idea. In the HTML document, this will be the one and only H1 tag. Then each topic should have clear subheads, which will be H2 tags in the HTML document.

You must realize that the vast majority of visitors to your website will not be interested in everything you have to say.

Most customers will have one specific, narrowly-defined issue. They'll have one burning question or aggravating problem they want to solve. They'll want to quickly and easily find relevant content for that topic, without having to swim through tons of irrelevant content.

Since you can't predict which question or problem any given customer may have, you need to make sure that all conceivable questions and problems pop out from the website, making it easy for customers to skim through it and identify the bit of content that meets their needs.

Even if your product can do many things and solve multiple problems, a specific individual customer may not care about all that. They may have just one thing that's motivating them to visit your website. Be sure that your website shows awareness of this customer reality.

Don't bury your topics and sub-heads in a flurry of hype.

Don't force your customers to read lots of irrelevant content before they finally find the one thing they need.

If we all had to pay attention to everything all the time, we'd never get anything done.

Present the salient points about your product in a logical manner, within a framework that makes it easy for customers to jump around and zero in on a specific bit of content that satisfies whatever their need is at a given moment.

An FAQ format is ideal for presenting this information.

An example of web visitor tunnel vision is here:

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