The easiest way to get from A to B

What’s the easiest way to get from A to B? What’s the path of least resistance?

People will always look for this path; the path that’s the simplest for them to follow.

When it comes to content, user experience and the user journey, it’s vital we sign post the user’s route for them to make life as easy as possible. Getting from point A to point B with the minimum amount of fuss and without having to think is the aim of the game.

This was the focus of Steve Krug’s book ‘Don’t make me think’ published in 2000. Even though it’s now 15 years old, the principles Krug outlines are as relevant now as they’ve ever been. Chief amongst these is removing questions in a user’s mind by making everything as clear and obvious as possible.

Less is always more, especially when it comes to marketing and storytelling. We’re all inclined to cram as much information as we can into a small a space as possible, particularly when it comes to website design and development.

The first thing we need to do is understand who are main users are, our customers, and identify what we want them to do.

This sounds obvious but is frequently overlooked.  By understanding them, you can begin to understand what they like, what they want and what they will respond to.

The next step is to know what you want your customers to do. Again, this sounds simple, but is never given the importance it deserves. When it comes to marketing, always ask yourself: ‘Why am I doing this?’ And understand what you want your customers to do and why you want them to do it will help you build a smooth journey.

Once you know what you want your customers to do, make it as easy as possible for them to do it. You wouldn’t invite guests to a party and then give them bad directions, would you? Make it clear and obvious, then you’ll reduce the risk of your customers getting lost.

Underpinning all of these tips is the idea to make it as easy as possible for your customers. Think about how frustrating it is when your favourite supermarket swap their aisles around – the same holds true with a website.

Know your customer, know what they want and then make it easy as possible for them to get it. Do this and you’ll be providing them with a first-rate online experience which will keep them coming back time and again.

InspirationTommy Tonkins