Digital trends come and go, but there’s one thing that will always be around: user experience (UX).
Access to data and digital communication, as well as digital transformation, permeates every aspect of our lives, but user experience matters more than ever. Your user experience is more than just a competitive edge—it’s also a mark of your individuality. In a crowded marketplace, UX is an important factor that makes you stand out from the rest.
From a business perspective, getting UX right the first time saves both time and money. UX mistakes are costly, so how can you avoid them and stay on the right track?
Don’t Ignore User Experience
Creating a seamless UX should be at the top of your business’ objectives. The reason is simple—ignoring it can be detrimental. In fact, it can be 100 times more expensive to fix UX mistakes after a launch than it is to address the issues in development. Focusing on UX early on also saves an estimated 90 percent in support costs. If you consider that 50 percent of a developer’s time is spent redoing work, you’ll see how inefficient it is to neglect building a proper UX during the development stage.
Good user experience, on the other hand, generates revenue. Consider the following:
- Two-thirds of customers are more likely to make purchases on mobile-friendly sites.
- Mobile users are five times more likely to stop a task if it’s not mobile optimized.
- On average, every $2 spent on UX returns around $100.
- Customers are 15 percent less likely to switch brands if they like their user experience.
- Nearly half (40 percent) will turn to your competition after a bad experience.
User experience is clearly worth the investment—so how do we get it right?
Start with Mobile in Mind
In this day and age, I think it’s a glaring oversight for companies to neglect their mobile site. We increasingly consume information on our phones and tablets. When done well, mobile sites provide immediate feedback, allowing for increased conversions and ultimately more customers.
Balance Usability and ROI
As with any business enterprise, there’s the fundamental question of what you’re getting back for what you put in. When designing (or redesigning) an app or a website, you should balance usability with your business goals. From a usability perspective, you want to create a product that’s seamless and intuitive. From a business perspective, you must understand that you’re not going to see any immediate returns. You also don’t want to be in the position of designing a product that has all the bells and whistles but ultimately fails to meet your business goals.
A successful UX requires a marriage of design, development, and business stakeholders. Consider establishing a task force with key members of your organization to create a product that is as attractive as it is functional.
When designing your application or website, keep a few best practices in mind:
- Identify your key personas. Who is your target demographic? Who will be using the application the most? Spend time discovering your key personas and creating different iterations of your product that keep true to your brand and will appeal to your audience.
- Define your style. Choose a design that is consistent with your branding and business values, from headings and content to color and typography. Don’t go overboard—pick a design that’s easy to read on any size screen.
- Have business and design work together. These two teams must come together to produce user interface (UI) screens. In this step, it’s also important to make sure you’re staying consistent across your devices. For example, iOS and Android have many similarities, but if you’re designing an app, you’ll have to make delineations for the “back” function, which are different on the two devices.
Don’t Be a Digital Laggard
UX design is the “make-it-or-break-it” aspect of development. Missing out on UX design is a little like being a laggard in the digital transformation: You lose opportunities for market position, and the cost of fixing any UX design flaws after your launch may have you missing out on more. On the other hand, getting UX right the first time builds your brand, which will ultimately generate more revenue for your business.
Daniel Newman is the Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise. From Big Data to IoT to Cloud Computing, Newman makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology projects, which leads to his ideas regularly being cited in CIO.Com, CIO Review and hundreds of other sites across the world. A 5x Best Selling Author including his most recent “Building Dragons: Digital Transformation in the Experience Economy,” Daniel is also a Forbes, Entrepreneur and Huffington Post Contributor. MBA and Graduate Adjunct Professor, Daniel Newman is a Chicago Native and his speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.