User Experience: Where Great Design Meets Great Business

May 23, 2016

Perry Puccetti

uxfirstimpressionsdomatter

 User-driven design isn’t just about creating a great experience for your customers, it’s also a smart business move – Spencer Lanoue

As described in Don’t Crack Under Pressure Part I: A Business Diagnostic, and Part II: Managing Tension, a business’ ability to make money is directly influenced by how well it understands the cause and effect relationships between the various pressures that businesses face, how effectively it manages tension, and addresses the symptoms that serve as leading indicators requiring action to be taken.

This blog describes how the Business Diagnostic can be applied to User Experience.

Applying the Business Diagnostic.

Ecosystem level forces are the underlying macro events or trends that serve as a “catalyst” requiring businesses to make decisions or take actions that address the pressures created by these events or trends.

With the explosion of social media and the proliferation of affordable, highly featured smartphones and tablets, customers are becoming incredibly sophisticated, elusive, and empowered. As a result, the dynamics that govern the relationship between brands and customers is also evolving. In this hyper-connected, interactive, and increasingly mobile world, every aspect of a user’s interaction with a product, service, or company matters as it forms the basis for the user’s perceptions of that product, service, or company. With the world rapidly approaching billions of “connected” users, User Experience matters. 

88% of online consumers are less likely to return to a site after a bad experience – Econsultancy

Enterprise level forces are the direct effect caused by the Ecosystem level macro events/trends and the resultant decisions and actions that must be taken by business leaders at the enterprise level that are a direct response to these pressures.

User Experience encompasses all aspects of the end-user's interaction with a company, its services, and its products. The first requirement for an exemplary User Experience is to meet the exact needs of the customer, without fuss or bother. Next comes simplicity and elegance that produce products that are a joy to own, a joy to use. True User Experience goes far beyond giving customers what they say they want, or providing checklist features. In order to achieve high-quality User Experience in a company's offerings there must be a seamless intersection between technology and creativity. For many employees today, collaborative, complex problem solving is the essence of their work. 

94% of first impressions are design related – Kinesis

Business unit level pressures are the direct effect caused by the Enterprise level pressures. The resultant decisions and actions that must be taken by business units as a result of the decisions and actions made at the Enterprise level – these are the day-to-day business challenges that are solved on a day-to-day basis.

Even the best content and most sophisticated technology will not help you achieve your business goals without a cohesive, consistent User Experience to support it. Creating the User Experience can seem overwhelmingly complex. While it may seem that with so many issues involved such as usability, brand identity, information architecture, and interaction design to name a few, the only way to succeed is to spend a fortune on specialists. The reality is that the best User Experiences are the most intuitive, and empathize with the user.

The following infographic provides a number of key insights.

userexperiencestats

For most customers, your website will be their first point of contact with your brand.

Within .05 seconds of your page loading, a customer has already formed an opinion – Kinesis

Forward thinking business leaders are taking steps to position their companies for success in the “digital economy” by ensuring that however a customer interacts with their company – the experience is an enjoyable one.

While it is a given that your website or mobile application must do all of the things it is supposed to do from a technology aspect, User Experience focuses on the human aspect… how do your customers feel about your brand… how are you making their lives that little bit easier.

How?

Ensure your customer/employee facing applications, websites, and mobile applications:

  • Add value to users by helping them do what they need to do
  • Are easy to use/intuitive from the user’s point of view
  • Have short learning curves and are easy to start using right away
  • Elicit an emotional response/are visually appealing… based upon the application’s purpose

Happy customers are loyal customers and will refer your brand to others, and, for customers you made feel special, or made their lives a little easier, they have the potential to become customers for life (think Apple).

Great design and great business go hand-in-hand – how you choose to invest in User Experience will affect your bottom line.

See the video

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