4 Neuroscience Insights That Can Increase Conversions
4. Visual processing is very powerful and quick. Half of the brain is devoted to processing visual information, and it's wired to pay attention to motion first, graphics second and text last. We can't read text if there are strong images, and we can't view images in the presence of motion. Therefore, if you have a web page with a banner at the top that changes rapidly, the other items will be ignored.
What you should do: Avoid using stock photography, and don't use motion unless it directly supports your call to action.
How you represent video on the page is also important — e.g., whether it auto-plays; is embedded on the page; made clickable, and does it matter whether that clickable icon is a thumbnail or a button; etc. Experiment with those different options to find out what works best for your brand. It's generally better to put a thumbnail video viewer that opens in a lightbox pop-over for the full experience. This way, it's not hard for you to design around the video.
For an e-commerce product catalog, have collages of category-level static images that show the diversity in the category rather than using rotating banners or animated sliders that take up valuable real estate.
How we make choices, who we listen to and what we pay attention to are deeply rooted in our physicality and evolution. Present a great experience to your customers by giving clear choices, talking to them directly and controlling where attention goes to on your web pages by using graphics deliberately.
Tim Ash is the author of the bestselling book Landing Page Optimization, and CEO of SiteTuners. A computer scientist and cognitive scientist by education (his PhD studies were in Neural Networks and Artificial Intelligence), Tim has developed an expertise in user-centered design, persuasion and understanding online behavior, and landing page testing. In the mid-1990s he became one of the early pioneers in the discipline of website conversion rate optimization. Over the past 15 years, Tim has helped a number of major US and international brands to develop successful web-based initiatives. Companies like Google, Expedia, Kodak, eHarmony, Facebook, American Express, Canon, Nestle, Symantec, Intuit, AutoDesk and many others have benefitted from Tim's deep understanding and innovative perspective.
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