Usability is a quality characteristic, which defines how easily a user interface or a web page can be used. Emphasis is placed primarily on design and usability.

Website usability is one of the online marketing disciplines. For the operator of a website, it is advisable for operators to handle the usability of their website and to constantly improve it. If a website is not designed in a user-friendly way, visitors will probably leave quickly. In order for a user to buy instead of leaving the page, a better search function can help. This can be accomplished, for example, by using Google Custom Search.

Important usability criteria[edit]

Particular focus on website usability relies on these criteria:

  • Easy to learn
How easy is it to reach this site? Can core tasks be carried out the first time?
  • Efficiency
How fast can a user perform a task when he is already familiar with the website?
  • Memorization
If a user returns to the website after some time, how fast can he find his way around the website again?
  • Error
How many errors does a user make? How serious are these? How does the user respond to these errors? How can they be eliminated?
  • Satisfaction
How pleasant is the design? Does a visitor want to come back?
There are a number of other quality characteristics for a website. All of these are under the category of user experience.

Usability testing[edit]

Special usability tests can be done to find out how users act on a website and what mistakes they make. If you want to quickly come to a conclusion about the usability of a page or product, you can use the system usability scale.

Detailed tests can be accomplished through observation, live testing (such as thinking aloud tests), eye tracking, heuristic evaluation and other methods. Such tests will provide insight into the behavior of users on the website and measures to improve the user experience can be derived from them. For example, heat maps with F-shaped pattern can be generated, which reflects the reading habits of the users. Scroll maps also show which parts of the site are the most interesting for a user.

In order to make navigating the site more user-friendly, the card sorting process can be used. In this case, several volunteers write down all terms for a navigation system on individual cards and they then need to arrange them according to their ideas of a workable navigation system. Furthermore, a participatory design can be used from the beginning. The user is included in the development process.


Accessibility plays a significant role (also for search engines). Accessible websites can be used by people with disabilities using auxiliary devices and programs (Braille displays, screen readers) and can be used without any problems. Alt tags in image optimization is beneficial for usability and on-page optimization.

Importance for search engine optimization[edit]

Usability has only an indirect influence on search engine optimization. If websites are poorly designed and not usable, users will most likely leave the site, and the bounce rate of a page back to the search engine will increase. Google always recommends continuously improving the usability of a website. If a website is very usable, accessible and barrier-free, it could be an indicator of a good quality website.

With a good user experience, a site can be perceived positively by visitors. Visitors can be encouraged to share the page, to bookmark or link it.

In terms of the code, CommonJS can serve to increase the flexibility and functionality of JavaScript. Of course, the correct use of the scripting language must be observed. All these indicators can be viewed by search engines as signs of quality. If the page is of high quality, it will be better placed in the rankings.

Web Links[edit]