There’s something about user experience that intimidates people. Marketers especially.
UX is something of a taboo subject in the hallowed halls of the marketing department; something relegated to fevered whispers over the water cooler. Too often have we heard marketers in hushed tones say “That’s web design right? Not my area of expertise.”
We need to burst this bubble right now.
While web design definitely falls under the umbrella of UX it’s only one element. As a discipline it falls across an entire company to execute, but guess whose job it is to make sure all the experiences work together?
Yep you guessed it, marketers.
It’s time to explore why UX is important, and how you can go about it.
But what actually is UX you ask?
As we’ve touched upon UX is much broader than traditionally thought. It consists of the interactions a person has with a product, in addition to the emotions and attitudes these experiences engender. This encompasses:
- Your website’s design and usability
- Social media
- Customer service
As the discovery process varies from customer to customer, it’s crucial that these elements work cohesively and optimally. Think of each aspect as a player in a football team; each one has to get a job done to ensure goals are met and should they not perform, they let the team down.
Ask yourself, if someone stumbles across your Facebook page will they get the same feel for your brand as they would on your website? Likewise, is your digital advertisement a true reflection of your company’s services? If someone clicks through to your website via any of these channels will they be met with a functional, usable and relevant experience? What about if they access your website on their mobile?
These are just a few examples, but should the answer be no to any one of them you have identified a major deterrent for potential customers.
And when it comes to UX any negative experience is tantamount to death. Forgive the cliched sentiment but positivity is key!
Why is UX important?
You obviously want people to have a positive experience with your brand, at every stage of their journey. A fantastic user experience can also foster customer loyalty and create brand advocates, which can in turn lead to customer referrals. On top of this it can also boost your discoverability among new prospects.
Word-of-mouth promotion is a dream for marketers. Having loyal brand advocates that are willing to promote your brand without incentives will yield more return than any other means of advertising. People are 77% more likely to purchase a new product when they’ve been referred by friends or family. In fact, according to the New York Times, 65% of new business comes from referrals. There should be no doubt that referrals can be used to boost sales, and a positive user experience is one of the primary drivers.
Sounds pretty good right? It gets better.
We all know growing businesses should not rely on referrals alone. So it’s good to know that well-planned UX on your website can also increase your discovery via search engines. Spiders can only index a certain number of pages so if you haven’t enabled a clear navigation path for them to follow they’ll read less, which unfortunately impacts your ranking. The inclusion of simple navigation and sitemaps will not only help visitors explore your website, but also search engine crawlers.
Working toward a positive brand experience
There a couple of easy tricks you can use to ensure that a (potential) customer has a positive experience with your brand.
As a marketer one of the easiest (which plays straight into your repertoire of skills) is to provide simple and consistent messaging across all platforms. This will build familiarity and trust, aligning customers with your company and should ultimately foster brand loyalty.
We also recommend utilising responsive design within your website so that customers are met with a beautiful experience, regardless of the device they’re using.
Go one step further though. Plot out all the possible journeys a customer may take to find your brand. Does this traverse channels and devices? Can you employ personalisation at any stage? Once you’ve identified these points, begin tailoring and formatting all content accordingly. In this way your visitors will have a seamless and relevant experience with your brand - no matter how they find you.
Now that sounds like a positive to us.
Want to provide a better user experience through your channels?To learn more, download our 10-step guide to choosing the right marketing automation software, today.