Ever landed on a webpage and been bombarded with pop-ups or found navigation so unnecessarily difficult that when you found the right page, you felt like you’d solved a rubix cube? If you have, you are a victim of bad User Experience (or, as we call it, UX). In this article, we will talk about why having a good UX is important for your business and what you can do to improve it.
What is user experience?
UX is the way that users feel when they are interacting with a system such as a website. A good UX will generally involve easy navigation and fulfil the user’s needs. Bad UX on the other hand, may leave users feeling frustrated and thinking negatively about a business, as interactions with a website may be the user’s first impression of a company.
Why is good UX important?
Good UX has some serious benefits, which is why we have put together a list highlighting its importance:
UX can help with conversions
Now, this benefit has to be mentioned first, after all, businesses need to make money. Having complicated web designs might look great, but if it is difficult for the user to find a product or service, how will they make a purchase or enquiry? Focusing too much on the aesthetics and not the usability of a site could well be detrimental for you, and lead potential customers straight to your competitors.
The digital world we live in has undoubtedly made us less patient and we expect our needs to be fulfilled quickly and with as little effort as possible.
UX can help with SEO & PPC
Even Google admits that good UX can help a website shoot to the top of the rankings. Which makes sense considering Google’s mission is “to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”.
Online platforms such as Google Ads will actually score your landing page experiences of ad campaigns so that you can monitor your performance and make any improvements so that these pages can be optimised and make for painless user journeys.
Investing in UX can save you money in the long term
UX design agencies will carry out their work based on research, analysis and testing which will put your company in a great position as you will hopefully prevent problems with usability cropping up. If your website is seeing technical issues later down the line, you may end up having to spend more on fixes such as product redesigns which will be far from ideal. Essentially, investing in UX from the beginning will improve your chances of increasing conversions and engaging with prospective customers in an effective, meaningful way.
UX can help increase brand loyalty
If you can build trust with your users and keep them coming back to your website, valuable relationships will be formed. Users will be more likely to return to your site if they found it enjoyable and easy to interact with - not only will it increase your chances of them completing transactions in the future, they may even spread the word of how great your business is, attracting even more users!
How to improve user experience
Make navigation easy
You want users to be able to find what they are looking for with minimal effort. Try to reduce the number of steps required for a user to reach a landing page to prevent them from becoming frustrated.
Have valuable Call to Actions (CTAs)
Clear, meaningful CTAs such as a ‘contact us’ or ‘buy now’ buttons can really improve conversions as it’s so easy for a user to click on and complete an order or goal which has been set by the business. You should avoid having vague CTAs such as ‘click here’ because it is not clear to the user where this link will take them...are they going to have to complete a form? Will this page be relevant to them? Who knows!?
Monitor customer journey maps
This will give you an insight into how users navigate your website and allow you to analyse which stages they get to in the purchase funnel. For example, you may notice that users are adding items to their shopping cart but not completing a purchase; you will then be in a position to query this issue so that you can find any bugs that need fixing.
Prototyping and user testing
Creating a prototype requires you to create a trial version of your final product, which can then be user experience tested before launching. This allows you to spot any bugs, see how easy it is to navigate your site and make any improvements based on your findings.
How to do user experience testing
User testing sets out to discover how easy it is to use a product with actual users so that you can establish whether there are any concerns arising from their interactions. It is important to test with users outside of your company because they will be looking at your website with fresh eyes and will not already be familiar with its navigation. Here is a brief overview of the steps involved in user experience testing:
- Identify what you need to test - is it the entire website because it hasn’t launched yet or have you added a new feature?
- Identify who your target audience is - it’s important to be as specific as you can because this will help you to understand user intentions so your content is as relevant as possible.
- Ask your participants to test the target elements of your website (they should ideally be the same as your target audience) - this could be as simple as filling out a contact form to ensure the process is as smooth as possible and that forms are successfully completed and received.
- Collect feedback from your participants so that you can make any improvements to your website.
Looking to improve your UX?
Whether you would like help with prototype development and testing, or generally want to improve your website’s online experience, why not pop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and talk to one of our UX experts. You can also find out more about what UX services we offer here.