Usability is one of the many overlooked aspects of creating a successful business blog. Information aside, the usability is one of the key factors which helps spread information, allows customers to interact with your content and easily find information without a nasty headache. The following are tips to improving the usability of your business blog.
TIP 1: FOCUS ON NAVIGATION
No matter how attractive a blog design may be, it’s utterly worthless unless your users can interact and navigate throughout your content. Your design could be atrocious but if users can still quickly find the information they’re seeking it won’t matter in the long run.
The navigation should be clear and concise to improve the usability on your business blog. Here are a few tips to improve navigation and usability on your business blog:
Divide each category into a descriptive and manageable topic
Break down each post into skimmable content so users can quickly navigate through the information
Don’t bury information too deep – leave links on your sidebar, footer and within the blog post for users to discover previous posts
In all, the goal of creating great navigation directly relates to the usability of the business blog. Provide information that’s relevant to your readers but allow them to quickly find it and go on with their day.
TIP 2: MAKE IT EASY TO SHARE
Part of blogging is the ability to share and comment on the blog posts. These factors can include:
A Retweet button
Facebook Like button
Social bookmarking buttons
Time is very valuable to people on the web; they want to be in, read the content and share with others without a headache of having to copy, paste and modify the message. Don’t hamper the ability to share information by not providing the items listed above.
When your business blogs content can be quickly shared, users will find a greater incentive to use your blog and bring others in. This increase in traffic, coupled with the improved usability, will continue to grow your business blog over time.
TIP 3: DISPLAY THE BEST INFORMATION UP FRONT
There are two great ways to get the best out of your business blog:
Show the best articles on a landing page
Show the best articles in the sidebar
These two simple, but very effective, tips can help to greatly improve the usability of your business blog. Users will be able to find the most important information without having to dig through archives.
Combined with the ease of sharing and quick navigation, a great landing page or list of the most popular (and informational) articles will quickly hook readers, improve page views and build a better experience to those visiting your business blog.
FINAL TIP: DON’T MAKE IT JUST ABOUT YOU
The final tip in improving the usability of your business blog is to go a complete one-eighty and not even talk about your business. It may sound counter-intuitive but most web users try to avoid overly marketed business blogs – ones which try to push products and services with each new post.
Instead of making the mistake of talking just about your business, improve the blog by talking about customers, include how-to articles, share a great video or give some insight into how a product or service can benefit a persons life instead of just telling them to buy it.
When your business blog can give back to the community without beating them down with marketing messages, the usability of the blog will become second nature; people will continually come back for great information again and again. As relationships build between the reader and the business, new opportunities will arise to create a great customer experience.