Digital technology is already an integral part of modern living – and the internet is now considered one of the main avenues for conducting business and commerce. However, it seems that the majority of older people still have difficulty navigating websites and often fail to complete their intended task.
But despite this, however, there is a steady increase in seniors who use the internet. As such, it is in the best interest of every e-commerce business to take advantage of this demographic to increase sales. And the best way to do it is by making sure that the web design is optimised for older users. The following tips and best practices will help achieve the designed engagement from an older target market.
Make the user interface reader-friendly
It is particularly bothersome for an older person to read tiny text on a small screen. Although users can zoom in and out of the page, the goal here is to ensure that they do not have to do anything to improve their experience. As much as possible, the font size should not be smaller than 12 points for the main text. According to one expert web design Oxford provider, it also helps if you break down chunks of information into smaller sections with whitespace so that it does not overwhelm the reader.
Increase visibility using contrast and colour
Web designers follow colour guidelines to optimise the user experience. For example, if you are embedding links within the text, you use the standard blue colour; otherwise, the user will not know it is a link. Indeed, contrast and colour help the user keep track of their activity while on the site. If you want to make sure that seniors have a smooth experience, you need to follow these guidelines.
Use a language that appeals to your audience
Web designers are often so focused on the task of making a site look good that they neglect the importance of user engagement. If you want a web design that appeals to the elderly, you need to account for any difficulties they may have while reading your content. For example, a website that is heavy on visuals should incorporate subtitles and captions. It is also best to use language that is easy to understand and will not alienate the older population.
Tabs and links should be accessible
Motor skills decline as we age, and it can be particularly hard for a senior to keep consistent hand-eye coordination while navigating a website. To avoid this problem, clickable elements should be big enough and not too close to each other. As much as possible, avoid too many redirects so that users can reach the target page in as little as one click. Moreover, give users several options to navigate the scroll bar such as clicking, dragging, using the arrow keys, etc.
Learn more about your intended users
All these best practices will indeed help in optimising web design for seniors. But one of the best ways to ensure that you are meeting the needs of your target audience is to test the user interface. It is also best to use a tool that allows testing in real-time so that you can gauge pain points and make the necessary updates before launching the site.