What is User Experience Design & How Can it Help Your Business?

User Experience Design

User experience design (UXD, UED, or XD) is the process of enhancing user satisfaction with a product or service, by improving the usability, accessibility, and desirability provided in the interaction with it. 

  • For product businesses:having an easy to find, and easy to use returns policy, will both increase purchases and simplify support effort. 
  • For service businesses: it might be the ease of obtaining a quote, or organising appointments, or having clear communications around delivery.
“No product is an island. A product is more than the product. It is a cohesive, integrated set of experiences. Think through all of the stages of a product or service – from initial intentions through final reflections, from first usage to help, service, and maintenance. Make them all work together seamlessly.”
Don Norman, inventor of the term “User Experience”

UXD is user-centred and involves the entire journey your customer has in the lead up to purchasing your product or service. Three things must be considered when creating something new:

  • Why - why are people motivated to use the product or service? What are their views and values on owning such a product?
  • What - what can people do with the product or service? What features does it have which help it be used?
  • How - how can they have a meaningful experience with the product or service? How does the accessibility and aesthetics help do this?

Real Life Examples of User Experience Design In Action

Tesla cars are not just focused on self drive. They have also given attention to simplifying the typical driving experience. When you sit in drivers seat, and put your foot on the brake. It will both shut the door and turn on... There is no park brake. If the accelerator is not pressed, park is the assumed mode. There are many ways other vehicle manufacturers could copy these enhancements for better user experience 

At Website World, we look to support tickets to drive improvements in usability. If more than one person has a similar issue in a given month, we look to see how we can smooth out the rough edges. In a world of endless feature creep and external influences, it's hard to make every process perfect, but that is the goal. 

MailChimp has 'humanised' technology and improved their customer's UXD by including visuals when users perform certain actions. The hand and arm of their mascot is used in three different graphics, with each one demonstrating the action you are about to take.

 Ways You Could Improve Your Business' UXD

Often complaints are made of trades people and other services not taking calls, or returning calls. Often it is a one person business; the plumber might be crawling under a house with hands in pipes, or the massage therapist in session needing a stress-free atmosphere. These businesses could consider the following website features: 

  • online appointment scheduling system
  • clear expectations of callback times, or best time to call, or use of a virtual assistant to take messages, and book appointments in to your calendar
  • an indicative pricing schedule, or sample price ranges of common jobs, minimum call-out fee disclosed up front. 
  • online quotation form to encourage email based quotations, that collect all required data to price in advance of human interaction 
  • FAQ that focuses on answering the frequently asked questions on the phone... The fuller your answers, the more informed your customers will be, and less time you spend on phone. 
  • comprehensive FAQ document, or project plan, attached to emailed quote
  • expand on your services page, r to expand on what the service includes or does not include. Again customers are more informed, and less time required to explain this verbally. 
  • consider using a cloud based billing application that you can share access with book keeper. You can invoice as soon as each job is completed, and get paid sooner. 

How Good UX Can Help Your Business

When a customer is satisfied with the experience they have had, they are more likely to come back and recommend your business to others. Increased customer retention means you sell more often, require less paid advertising and have an increased market share within your industry.

Market research company Forrester Research identified that on average, for every $1 that was invested into UX design, there was a return of $100, or a ROI of 9,900%. With those figures, businesses cannot afford not to invest and take note of UXD!

The benefits of having great UXD include:

  • fewer costs in the future when you sort your UX at the start, such as using prototypes
  • increased conversion rates
  • improved SEO on your website, when focusing on website UX
  • increased brand loyalty
  • increased word of mouth referrals

In conclusion, user experience design is about providing satisfying experiences to those using your products or services. By improving your UXD, you increase your businesses success levels. Improving your website usability also helps increase conversions, and you can learn more about this in our article Website Usability: How Easily Can a Customer User Your Website?

Tags: web design  

Posted: Friday 24 May 2019