It’s amazing the power of the web. With this holiday season, I bet it’s safe that most of us have visited a retailer’s site for gift information or to purchase a gift. I know I have. This week’s lesson was on web design and what I learned is that websites are designed for target audience. Why I am now just figuring this out is beyond me - I should have known. But, what I like in a website my teenaged stepkids would probably find boring and uninterested. I visited a few retail websites targeted for teens and was a bit overwhelmed with the amount of information contained on the homepage. I thought my Adult ADD was going to kick in!
But websites have two objectives – communications and e-commerce. With communications, brand building, creating customer loyalty are only two of these objectives. Others include generating awareness and how to obtain the products or services (Ramos, 2008). E-commerce is booming. Research indicates that by the end of 2008, online retail will reach nearly $230 billion and account for 10 percent of U.S. retail sales (Ramos, 2008).
However, a website should be one that the target audience is comfortable with, find it easy to use and function properly. The first time a visitor will make his/her first impression within the first second and this will also decide if they will become repeat visitors and will influence purchasing decisions (Ramos, 2008). Also, a 65 percent of U.S. Internet users said they would not make purchases from a website designed poorly and 46 percent of those also said that the design look was an important component when evaluating for credibility.
So, while the websites I looked at may not have appealed to me, it was definitely appealing to its target market.
Ramos, J. (2008). Lesson 8: Creative Considerations in Emerging Media. Retrieved on December 14, 2008, from https://ecampus.wvu.edu/webct/urw/lc5116001.tp0/cobaltMainFrame.dowebct.