Assuming that the primary objective of any company is to generate sales, the old adage ‘customer is king’ rings true more than ever. As buying options increase, information barriers decrease, and every product begins to be available online, customers become more selective.
In an effort to remain competitive, companies are focusing on innovation in order to find new ways to differentiate themselves. There are many of these opportunities in the product design process.
UX refers to “user experience” and UX design is the process of strategically designing products with a view to maximizing accessibility and optimizing usability.
Prioritize Customers Over Production with UX Design
With current trends prioritizing a customer-oriented model over a strict focus on production, UX design is now the foundation of any strong marketing strategy.
Win the Customer cites the following U.S. adult statistics confirming this trend:
- 86% would pay more for better customer experience.
- 89% switched to a competitor because they had a bad customer experience.
- 73% said that friendly customer service made them fall in love with a brand.
Looking to the future, Walker Info experts have predicted that customer experience will become even more important by 2021 than the price or product itself.
Case Study: Redesigning the Classic Ketchup Bottle
One of the best examples of effective UX design can be seen in a low ketchup bottle.
Remember the classic Heinz glass product? The original design has created a myriad of problems for customers.
The original and redesigned bottle of Heinz Ketchup
In the original glass version, the ketchup was oxidized around the rim, and the bottle required endless shaking and tapping. This beloved product had a terrible user interface ( UI).
Heinz has developed a modern plastic bottle with a UX design. After identifying the problem faced by customers, the company resolved it by designing a new iteration that was easier to use. After the redesigned product was introduced, Heinz reported a noticeable uptick in consumption.
The principles of UX design extend far beyond the simple packaging of the product. If a website or product has an interface that is not designed to be user-friendly, customers will be frustrated. Many would even consider switching to a competitor.
The same is true if the website is not optimized for mobile users. With the current market focus on customer satisfaction, the business objectives continue to depend on positive customer experience, and therefore on UX.
Almost all smartphone users (96 percent) have encountered sites that are not designed for mobile devices.
And mobile users are five times more likely to drop out of work due to bad UX mobile devices. In addition:
- 79% of users will leave and search for another site if the content is not optimized.
- 48% of users feel frustrated and annoyed when sites are poorly optimized.
- 52% of users are unlikely to engage with a company due to bad mobile experience.
Why is mobile optimization so important? Consider the high volume of potential consumers who research, search, and ultimately purchase products and services on a mobile device.
81% of users do online research before they shop.
Mobile search happens at home or at work, even when a PC is nearby, 77% of the time, and most publishers say well-formed mobile content boosts user engagement.
As they search online for information about what your business has to offer, users will get their first impression of your brand. Make sure it’s a positive one by catering to the mobile platforms that your audience is most likely to use.
Optimizing content for mobile users will pay dividends-Shoppers complete 63% of purchases related to their mobile research, and two-thirds of mobile consumers intend to purchase on the same day.
How can UX help you make a difference?
Getting buyers simply to consider a product or service is becoming increasingly difficult in the light of current market competition. Holding the customer’s attention requires careful consideration and a deliberate focus on optimizing UX.
Consider this: market competition has increased year on year since the beginning of the digital revolution. In view of the reduced barriers to reaching customers, competitors continue to offer the same level of product quality.
Ease of use is a major differentiator in a wide range of identical products. UX design can make or break the potential of a company to generate sales.
Not yet convinced? Read more below about seven of the most effective ways companies can leverage UX design.
1. UX Increases the conversion rate
When clients are on the market for SEO services, online searching can provide a wealth of relevant sites. However, most of the results will offer almost indistinguishable services. From the options they find, searchers are likely to create a shortlist of sites that are the easiest to navigate and understand.
Customers are, by nature, impatient. In recent years, the average human attention span has dropped to just 8 seconds from the previous 12 seconds. Curiously, the attention span of the goldfish remained constant at 9 seconds over the same period.
With ever-more limited attention spanning, many users simply refuse to accept any unnecessary complexity that would delay immediate access to the information they require.
Prioritizing UX encourages customers to proceed with their purchase intention. No matter what benefits a product or service might have, no one will bother to learn about them if they’re off the landing page.
A smooth and seamless customer journey encourages customers to fully explore the platform while optimizing UX increases conversion rates along the way.
2. Maximize ROI with UX Design
The campaign killer is a low return on investment ( ROI) when considering ad spending online. Slowing the budget to drive target customers to the website is unsustainable if they are unable to navigate the site. This ring is especially true in today’s pay per click (PPC) advertising landscape.
Improving UX involves consulting the Customer Travel Map (CMJ). This tool maps user interactions with the website and highlights the issues they face, such as the following common examples:
- Difficulties in entering payment information
- Struggles by navigating the menu bar
The CMJ will identify factors that hinder the user’s experience. Making changes based on this information will keep users on your website longer and ultimately make them convert.
3. UX boosts SEO ranking
Search engines are extremely sensitive to UX-quotients. All search engines are driven by the common goal of providing the most relevant answers to user queries while requiring minimal effort to find them.
Google’s mysterious search algorithm places great importance on optimized UX search rankings. In other words, Google has a preference for sites that provide an excellent user experience. Optimizing the UX quality of your platform will lead to higher search engine rankings.
4. Maximize UX Good PPC Campaigns
UX also impacts ROI on PPC campaigns. When considering the relevance of an ad, Google Adwords checks UX for ad campaigns on landing pages. The UX-quotient will have an influence on the success of the campaign.
If a landing page related to a PPC campaign can not ensure easy navigation or short loading time, the page will be considered to be less relevant, requiring a higher ad bid to be displayed.
5. UX Improves Customer Loyalty
Good UX reinforces brand loyalty. Providing seamless interaction with the site encourages strong user activation. As customers explore your website more fully, your brand is starting to develop long-standing relationships.
Increasing customer retention facilitates the value of the customer’s lifetime. The comfort level is an influential factor here. Customers tend to return to what they feel most familiar with. If the interactions are positive, the brand is more likely to remain at the top of the mind.
In this sense, UX design can be leveraged to play customers with a psychological tendency towards simplicity. A website that reduces confusion is likely to generate loyal customers and increase user retention rates.
6. UX Enhances Word-Of-Mouth Marketing
It is crucial to understand two things in any marketing area:
- Customers are eager to share their experiences.
- Consumers are strongly influenced by social evidence.
It’s human nature to want to talk to the people around us about our experiences. People are eager to discuss the positive customer experience that creates brand ambassadors among loyal customers. Optimizing the UX strategy can boost the marketing of word-of-mouth.
Consumers are largely influenced by the advice of people they feel close to, a factor that plays an increasingly crucial role in brand strategy.
As the digital landscape increases the communication channels between a company and its customers, social media acts as a sounding board for customer experience.
The UX design can make a difference between a rave review and an average or negative review. With greater access than ever to online social proof, one user’s positive experience can further influence and encourage others like them to become a brand.
7. UX boosts cost savings
Launching a new product or campaign inherently poses associated with risks. It is impossible to know for sure whether or not a project will generate the desired ROI.
An unsuccessful launch may result in a significant loss of capital. However, to some extent, you can reduce the likelihood of such losses by investing in smart UX design.
Careful UX design involves extensive user research, wireframing, mapping information architecture, prototyping, testing, and finally implementation.
The full process will determine the functionality of the offer to be launched. This provides a more accurate estimate of the potential ROI of the next product.
Identifying potential issues can indicate the likelihood of success and help you outline the steps you need to take to correct errors before starting. As a result, you can avoid potential losses that you might otherwise have experienced.
This last point is particularly important for start-ups for whom capital is a limiting factor. Moreover, careful budget planning can help start-ups convince investors, as one of the main qualitative measures that corporations use to value start-ups is how they use their budget.
UX is the centerpiece of any marketing strategy
UX is no longer relegated to a marketing buzzword that signals a shift away from the traditional 4 P model:
This model lacks the customer’s attention and has become obsolete.
Customer-oriented 4 C Model is a much more appropriate marketing philosophy for 2020:
- Cost to be satisfied
While UX design draws on many classic marketing techniques, such as market research, product testing, customer service principles, and marketing communications, it presents a completely modern perspective that takes these techniques even further.
As customers switch from brick-and-mortar stores to online shopping, the lack of understanding of changes in the customer’s journey has proved troublesome for even the most experienced brand marketers.
Most importantly, UX design reduces the headache of navigating these pitfalls and redesigns a marketing plan to fit any business in the digital space.