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New App Clues You in on What People Think of Your Website

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You want to know what I think of your new website. You got a sec? The folks over at Zurb have created an ingenious little web application that allows anyone to conduct a free test of what visitors remember about a website. And those visitors get exactly five seconds to form a first impression.

Called Clue, the site lets you quickly capture a page and create an interactive memory test that helps determine whether people understand what you're trying to get across on your website. Just visit the Clue website, submit your URL and create a test that gives you a unique URL that you can then share with customers, vendors, employees and others. You ask them to take the five-second test and they, in turn, provide you with valuable feedback on what they think about the site.

By giving users mere seconds to absorb a web page and recall the most memorable portions of that page, you're able to quickly and accurately identify the best elements on that page -- as well as the ones that don't work so well.

Want to give Clue a test drive? Just visit http://www.clueapp.com/52+ and test any of the examples at the bottom of the page. If you're impressed, the next step might be to sign up.

In the case of wordpress.com --one of the test examples -- results show us that visitors remember visuals or words that expressed "headache," "signup" and "WordPress," while not remembering "blogging" or "themes." That's good information to know if you're the head of marketing of the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world.

As a business owner, you can use the results from Clue to improve your online positioning, make changes that could reduce your site's bounce rate and increase landing page performance. In addition, you gather valuable information about your customers, and you discover problems staring you right in the face that you were too blind to see. 

Clue's target audience is anyone with a website as well as graphic designers who want to test an idea or a page. Those five-second tests are also perfect for employees who want to help management understand problems associated with the company's website.

The bottom line: This is a great tool for evaluating content pages and should be used before spending one minute on lengthy, costly usability studies. Clue is a quick, easy and free way to help you determine whether your brand messaging is clear and your calls to action memorable.

Mikal E. Belicove

Written By

Mikal E. Belicove is a market positioning, social media, and management consultant specializing in website usability and business blogging. His latest book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Facebook, is now available at bookstores.