What Is User Experience And How To Master It?
The latest marketing news and headlines are continually talking about ‘user experience’ or ‘customer experience.’ The phrase itself sounds fairly self-explanatory, but what does it really mean? Even more importantly, does your business provide a great user experience?
Overall, user experience means how people respond to something they experience. Customer experience applies to your entire website design, social media outreach, ads, content strategy, and so forth. Basically, when people come into contact with your content, how do they react? Do people regularly follow your brand on social media and make purchases through links, or do you have high bounce rates? Your response to this question will largely boil down to user experience. Here we explain everything you need to know about user experience.
What is User Experience?
It might seem like you can’t control the reaction someone has to your products and advertisements, but really you can. It just takes trial and error, and dedication to figure out what makes your target audience go, “Oh! I like this!” User experience strives to ditch old business strategies used for marketing, and instead is based on forming a relationship with your consumers in order to determine their real human needs.
People are wise to old marketing methods, and will turn a quick blind eye on them. A business that does not focus on continually improving customer experience is eventually going to fail. On the other hand, a great user experience guarantees new clients and increased sales. Hence why 73% of companies currently not conducting user experience tests plan to start within the next year. (Reference)
When It Comes To Digital Marketing The Most Important Detail Of Them All = Customer Experience
Simply being a part of the online conversation and creating a great online campaign is not enough, in the end user experience remains extremely important. Technology users are smart and empowered; they have the whole world at their fingertips. In order to make your mark on your customer base, it’s adamant that you make their experience pleasurable and worth their while.
These days, if an app doesn’t work just right it is easy to delete, and if an ad doesn’t open within under a few seconds, it will likely never be seen. Letting little details slip can get you into a world of trouble, while it might seem like only a little deal to you, the user might see it as a glaring issue. If your platforms do not provide a professional appearance and function quickly, people are not going to trust you, or have the time to wait and find out if they do or not. Keep in mind, 40% of users admit heading directly to a competitor’s site when another site isn’t working for them correctly. http://www.themobileplaybook.com/
It’s All In The Details… Customers Notice Everything
Have you ever been creating something, maybe an online ad or flyer, and thought: I don’t think anyone will notice that small mistake! Think again, your customer notices everything, even if they do not realize it. Every last detail of a site, app, or ad determines if one clicks to purchase or clicks out and moves on.
A blue or red button might seem like a simple choice of preference that won’t have too much overall impact, but in reality little details can make huge differences. Changing the size, shape, or color of a button for customers to click can alter how many people actually click the button. Font size and style, as well as the general layout and design of a site are all incredibly important, down to the very last detail.
You have the power to give your customers the best user experience ever, meaning you have the power to vastly increase click-over rates and revenues. Making constant changes based on customer feedback is adamant in order to provide and maintain the best experience.
If people enjoy the experience they encounter, they are going to spread the word to friends and family. Meaning you win, and then you win again, all thanks to a good user experience.
Why Poor User Experience Could Cause Your Business To Fail
People recognize a poor user experience right away, causing many potential clients to turn away before you are ever even given a proper chance. The customers that put up with a poor user interface, or lousy customer service might be your customers today, but that doesn’t mean they will be back tomorrow.
You can offer a great product but if customers are forced to endure a bad user experience, your current customers are going to be on the hunt for an equally good product sold by someone that offers a better platform, return policy, or is simply more friendly and available to connect with. So while you might make some sales at first, a poor user experience is no way to keep costumers, let alone earn new ones.
How Do You Improve User Experience?
It’s not easy to manufacture the ideal user experience, even the largest companies struggle to figure it out before getting it right. This is where user feedback really comes in handy. Your customers have the best ideas so don’t forget to listen to them. Reading online reviews can help clue you into details about aspects of your business customers do and do not like. You can also prompt customers, maybe even with incentives like 20% off their next order, to rate their personal user experience and offer feedback about what they like or don’t like.
Even if your customers seem very happy, never stop asking for feedback. It’s a great way to keep up with the changing times, as other businesses implement new features to make platforms easier to use you don’t want to get left behind. One year no one will complain about a certain aspect of the overall user experience your business offers, but the following year, these same people may decided they don’t like it. Always keep lines of communication open in order to stay in touch with your target audiences’ current needs and wants.
The Importance Of Research: User Experience Tests
If you want to offer a superior user experience you must keep up to date with research, your own and what big research firms are currently publishing. This data speaks volumes about your target audience and what they really do and do not like.
For instance, if you assume everyone is still using their desktop to surf data, your user experience is failing miserably, what about all of those people trying to access your site from their cell phone? Current research tells you 50% of people now use their mobile device as their main or only source for going online. How does your audience access your content? If you are creating content for the wrong platform you could be missing out on a lot of potential customers.
Another telling piece of research data that might alter user experience: emails that include social sharing buttons increase click through rates up to 158%. Knowing this may change the way you design your emails, sparking a whole new world of success. You can’t guess what people want and need; instead the best user experience is derived from carefully sought research.
Customer Experience Is No One Man Job
No one person can guarantee a great user experience across all platforms. You need an array of specialists in order to provide the best experience for your customers year after year. Who designs your mobile aps? Who is the social media expert with proven experience connecting with customers through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram? Is anyone on your team educated in psychology in order to grant insight on customer behavior and expectations? Does anyone do research on your target audience in order to better analyze feedback and institute valuable changes? Taking on new team members with a vast understanding of customer experience can make a huge difference regarding your overall success.