The anatomy of website experience

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Creating an excellent website experience requires that you consider each element involved in shaping the experience, how those elements make the user feel, and how easily the user can use those elements to complete their tasks.

The website experience pyramid

When evaluating the elements of your website experience, it’s helpful to view them as a pyramid of user needs.

  • Functional: Does your website work as expected? Does it meet the basic user needs?
  • Reliable: Is your website available and accurate? Can users rely on it to work and provide the information they need?
  • Usable: Can users easily navigate and use your website? Can they find what they’re looking for?
  • Enjoyable: Is your website/content compelling? Does your website speak to your users on an emotional level?
The website experience pyramid. From top to bottom: enjoyable, usable, reliable, functional

Beyond the website experience pyramid

The pyramid of user needs is a great starting point when evaluating your website experience. But to dive even deeper into the quality of your site experience, you should look at three additional categories:

  • Findable: Is your website easy for users to find through search engines, social, or ads?
  • Accessible: Can people with disabilities access and use your website?
  • Credible: Does your brand, identity, content, or services build trust and confidence with the user?

By focusing on the pyramid of user needs and ensuring your website is findable, accessible, and credible, you can give your brand the best possible foot forward when users encounter it—whether it’s for the first or the tenth time.