People will forget everything before they forget how you made them feel. This is why user experience is such an important thing. You see, UX is the amalgamation of their interaction with your brand. Every relationship has positive and negative aspects but UX is the bottom line – whether this experience is positive or negative. It’s also the reason why they choose to come back or why they make a decision to do business with someone else.
Still, even if this is true, how do you turn this to your advantage? Which steps should you take in order to design a strong user experience? Let’s check it out!
1. Make sure everything is technically perfect
The first thing you need to do is ensure that your online presence is technically flawless. Why is this so important? Well, first of all, it will allow your audience to focus on the brand message and services, rather than a flaw in your operations. It will also ensure that your brand seems professional enough.
For instance, you need to start with your SEO. On-site optimization is one of the things that will determine your SEO rank. If people can’t find you using relevant keywords, they will assume that you’re not that big of a deal within your own industry.
The responsiveness of your website will also determine the user experience. First of all, a long loading time will make them lose interest in your brand. After just 4 seconds of not loading, you’re bound to lose about 25% of your total audience. Second, keep in mind that if it takes too long to load, people will feel negative about your online presence. They will grow annoyed, which is not a feeling that you want to be associated with your brand.
Remember that in order for your online presence to work as intended, you might need professional IT managed service providers. By ensuring that everything is structured right, you’re demonstrating professionalism, as well as providing something of value to your staff.
2. Make everything obvious and transparent
Another thing you need to do is ensure that everything is obvious and transparent. A lot of people believe call-to-action (CTA) to be something relatively important but what they forget is the fact that this is essential to the way people use your website. Just think about it – what if someone sees your offer and is genuinely interested in it but has no idea where to click in order to contact you/make a purchase? This would be a massive missed opportunity.
Also, not being able to know where you need to go next can be a huge problem. Issues of navigation, in general, are pivotal to your overall user experience. For instance, allowing people to return to the homepage regardless of where you are on their website is a great thing. Also, allowing them to shift through categories without having to go all the way back makes the experience much more pleasant.
A smooth browsing experience is no longer something optional. It is a golden standard. By failing to provide it to your audience, you will seriously lag behind.
3. Long-term relationships
One of the first things you need to understand is that conditions constantly change and it’s hard for you to find a way how to keep them on your side. They might offer better terms or you might relocate your business, which causes problems of its own.
In order to create this level of loyalty and dependence, it’s important that you figure out how to generate enough value. For starters, a decent content marketing campaign can help generate quite a bit of value early on. Special offers and loyalty programs are just as effective. Remember, it is not just about the value – it’s about finding a way to make your audience feel privileged for doing business with you.
Everyone loves preferential treatment, so, if you can make it appear (or just feel) so, you will gain a significant competitive edge.
4. User experience doesn’t end with website
The next thing you need to understand is that the user experience doesn’t end with your website. Apps, ads and even SMS messages will play a vital role in this field. Keep in mind that you need to focus on the end-to-end experience in order to cultivate a lasting relationship. Your first impression is just as important as the post-sale follow-up. In order to fully exploit this, make sure that your user experience goes beyond the website. The simplest way to do so is to try to roleplay a situation in which you’re an average user. From here, try to imagine your entire customer lifecycle.
Then, there are all the logistical issues that you need to pay attention to. It is imperative that your end-to-end service meets the standards of the industry, potentially even exceeds them. Make sure that your delivery and your customer service are up to the task.
Designing a strong user experience is one of the most important things for the success of your brand as a whole. Keep in mind that constructing an experience isn’t a simple matter. It requires you to get into the psychology of your target audience and see your business through their eyes. It’s also about assigning priorities, seeing as how they won’t necessarily see your brand the way you do. Do your research, try roleplaying (putting yourself in their shoes) and test after every change. This is really the only way for you to make it.