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How to keep the user on the page for more than 5 seconds?

You spend many hours working on it to develop it in the best possible way. However, it takes less than five seconds for visitors to decide whether your site is worthy of their attention or not. It's only in those few seconds that you have to engage users with something, convey a quick and interesting message, and do everything possible to stop them and "force" them to study the site in detail. It seems complicated, doesn't it? How to keep a user on your site for more than 5 seconds?


Today I will answer three main questions:

  • How to keep a user on the site longer?
  • Why do most users leave my site within the first five seconds?
  • What are the best ways to keep a user on the site longer and thereby influence the conversion?

1. Optimize website loading speed

If your site takes more than 4-5 seconds to load, then unfortunately you are losing a significant part of potential customers.

Various studies and statistics prove that Internet users leave sites that take longer than 3 seconds to load faster. According to Amazon, one second lost on page load equals nearly $1.6 billion in lost sales. In this regard, I refer you to our guide to reducing website load times for more information.

2 Make a good first impression

It's often said, "The first impression is the last impression." This phrase is absolutely true when it comes to company websites. It is very rare that simply ugly sites have a chance of success. After the five second rule has passed, it's important to make a good first impression.

I'm just assuming your site has "something like that". Most often, this is an attractive design combined with a suitable combination of colors, images and photographs. The main thing is to attract attention without confusing users. Don't be afraid to experiment with your site until you achieve the desired, memorable and unique effect. An article about a user-friendly website is worth reading here.

3. Smartly plan the space that the user sees immediately upon entering

According to various statistics, website users spend almost 80% of their time viewing the content and space that they see immediately after visiting the site. This clearly indicates that Internet users are subject to the "first impression" rule. Here I should immediately clarify that the attractive space of the page should be along its entire length. Because it's a myth that users don't scroll through pages. For more information, I invite you to read the post on UXMyths.

Make sure that at the top of the page the user will immediately see your USP, that is, the unique factor that you most reveal in your advertising campaign. It could be a product, service, or message. Usually, visitors don't have the patience or full concentration to focus on the entire page and its content. Therefore, you should consider that only the first part of the page will remain in the user's memory, and this is where you will place the most important information.

4.Highlight what you have to offer with catchy headlines

Know one thing - your site visitors won't read everything listed in subsections just to find out what you have to offer. They want it immediately. And preferably in capital letters.

Writing short and catchy headlines is a must for any advertising campaign. The title text should communicate effectively with users so that visitors immediately understand that they are on the right page and get what they want.

When choosing a text, do not suggest yourself. Test your titles with A/B testing to make sure your copy is optimal. Faced with this, what should your headings be like to keep the user on your site? Bartlomey Kilian of MobileTry wrote an article on this topic about creating headlines. I invite you to read it.

5. Give users everything on a silver platter

When users enter a website, they expect to see a simple and intuitive navigation menu. Your (presumably top) menu bar should contain all the important links that users might be interested in - services, contact options, home page, etc. In addition, your menu should be simple and easy to use. Note: Make sure the language you use in the menu is understandable. Some visitors may have difficulty finding what they are looking for. This, in turn, can lead to a high bounce rate.

6. Avoid using too much text - diversify your content!

If your site has a lot of long content without any visual interludes, then you will experience a high bounce rate. There is a very obvious reason for this. Visitors are not able to read this amount of content, or simply... don't want to.

How to keep a user on your site for more than five seconds? You can make it visually appealing. Use images, graphics and videos to convey information about your offer. Optimize your content to keep it short and always remember that most visitors live in a rush. It is important that your texts are precise and concise. Another note: this type of writing requires a lot of knowledge and practice, so don't get discouraged from the start.

7. Add elements of security, reliability and trust

The credibility of your site plays a key role in making a good first impression. If users do not trust you from the very beginning, then it will be difficult for you to succeed. Many users are allergic to lack of security - they are afraid of viruses, any attacks and payment fraud. Make sure visitors can find credible testimonials and testimonials on your site. It will also not be superfluous to get an SSL certificate and a privacy policy.

Here I can offer you two of our articles. One is about the role of reviews and testimonials on the site, and the other is about how to install an SSL certificate.

8. Maintain graphics but avoid stock photos.

Eight out of ten users only need to look at images and headlines to understand what the company offers. The rest will read the details. To pass the "5 second test" i.e. to keep the user on the page longer, you need to combine graphics with relevant text. Instead of using public free images, invest in high quality, unique graphics that truly represent what your company has to offer.

9. Optimize your site for mobile users

You have probably noticed that more and more sites are viewed from a phone or tablet. Therefore, mobile devices cannot be ignored - it is very important to optimize your site for mobile devices so that every user has the best experience on it. Also keep in mind that the desktop version of the site is completely different from the mobile version. Test different screen sizes and see how your site behaves on smartphones and tablets.

10. Plan your call-to-action (CTA) buttons well

Another very important point to keep the user on the page for more than 5 seconds is call-to-action buttons. If users know what they need to do from the very beginning, then there is a high probability that they will choose your offer. The CTA should be clear and simple, encouraging action. Most importantly, it must be clickable. Specify a clear way to achieve something, because a discouraged user is a user who will leave your site.

11. Avoid all possible distractions from the website

Probably the biggest deterrent to users from a website is the automatic music playing cheerfully in the background (although this is very rare these days). The reaction to such features of the site is a nervous search for the sound switch throughout the site, muting the sound from the operating system, or, even worse, shutting down the site.

What about pop-ups? Some people find pop-ups to be an effective distraction, but using pop-ups properly can increase conversions many times over. Make sure you don't bombard visitors with music and intrusive windows.

How to keep the user on the page for more than 5 seconds? - summary

I tried to collect in one place all the key questions on the problem of how to keep the user on the site. Let us know in the comments if you have any more tips to improve visitor engagement. If you have any doubts, just write to us.

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