Millennials are now one of the largest groups of consumers out there, forcing a large number of businesses to wonder how they can engage and cash in on more millennial. Millennials, unlike Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, have a different and equally unique set of needs and wants, especially when it comes to online experiences and staying engaged with any content offered. If you’re re-designing your website with this generation in mind, use these tips to create website that will engage millennials.
Your Site Must Be Mobile-Friendly
Businesses targeting millennials can really help themselves out by ensuring their website is mobile-friendly. Even excluding the search engine optimization benefits of Google rewarding sites that are mobile-friendly, millennials are browsing websites on their mobile devices. According to a study by comscore.com, 80% of millennials own a smartphone, in comparison to just 40% of 55 and up or 68% of 35 to 54. If you’re designing a mobile-first website, here are some tips:
- Your website pages must load quickly. Kissmetrics says, on average, people expect a load time of 3 seconds or less.
- Keep it consistent. Rather than designing two different sites with different content, keep it consistent to avoid confusing users, who could leave thinking they’ve landed somewhere they shouldn’t have.
- Optimize the mobile experience with swipe-friendly and tap-friendly content.
- Simplify the navigation. There is nothing worse than loads of drop-down menus on a handheld device.
Include Self-Service Options
In the 2015 Global State of Multichannel Customer Service Report, it was stated that 90% of customers would like some element of self-service when finding help with a product or service. More significantly, including a self-service help option allows your business to develop a more favourable perception among users, particularly millennials who are more inclined to solve problems with technology than by reaching out with a call.
Also, us millennials are all about instant gratification and being in control, mostly due to the pervasiveness of technology (think “likes,” “shares”, immediate answers to questions, etc.). We don’t want to be sitting on hold for 10 minutes. We don’t want to explain our problem to 5 different people to get a prescribed response. When you design a new website, ensure you have a complete support centre with how-to’s, video tutorials, and other content that can also increase their engagement and general user experience. Depending on what your selling, you could also include a FAQ page or monitored forum.
Design for User Experience
A quick glance as user statistics will show you that user experience is quickly becoming the differentiator between competitors, especially as technology is fostering a growing global economy. In fact, the majority of users say they would pay more for a product if they are guaranteed a good user experience and the number one reason people switch to a competitor is because of a bad user experience. Growing up in an age where not only is everything easily accessible but choices abound raises millennials expectations even higher than the average bear. If your website is slow, has items that do not load, or is too difficult to navigate, no big deal—there are literally hundreds of thousands of other sites out there where they can likely find the same information.
A poor user experience on your site means less revenue since users will go find a better site. Millennials also are not known for their long attention spans. Consider how often millennials are on their phones while doing something else, whether out shopping, entertaining themselves while waiting in line, or even watching TV at home. Design for interruptions by making your site easy to re-engage with. This means giving them just enough, but not overloading them. You also want to minimize distractions on your own site, so users can easily complete whatever task brought them to your pages in the first place. Failing to design to the millennial user experience is the number one way to give your competitors business.
Encourage Social Sharing & Loyalty
Millennials love social, games, free coffee, you get the idea. Be sure to include all the share icons on your pages, especially blog content. This will make it so much easier for millennials to share your content with their peers. It is also ideal to include some sort of loyalty program or rewards scheme that allows users to earn badges, points, or free stuff by using your service, buying your products, or promoting your business. These things will all help to turn millennials into loyal repeat users.
We Still Love A Good Story
“Storytelling” has become one of those buzzy buzzwords that everyone seems to be tossing around these days. The concept of telling a story through your brand, including everything from design assets to the content your publishing, it’s really all just about improving engagement. Us millennials will use products we feel a connection with. Storytelling is becoming the greatest way to connect with your consumers (not just millennials). Web design isn’t about just putting graphics and copy on a page anymore. Whilst you craft your site, think about the target audience and what they’ll need and want to know about your product or service. This allows you to develop out personas and outline your brand story. Keep it simple though, no one would know who fell down the hill if we had to hear about how Jill was doing her taxes for the first half of the story. The formula for your story is basically problem, solution, and success.
In A Nutshell
Us millennials can be fickle often misunderstood creatures, but we are by no means impossible to please. As you redesign your website, thinks about what matters most to that age group: efficiency, control, and ease of use. Design your site with these behaviours in mind and it will help you to appeal to a broader user base and tap into the constantly growing millennial spend pool.