What is User Experience (UX) in Web Design?
When creating a website most people will spend a lot of time working out what information they should be portraying, including the company details and what product/service is being offered. However, as most web design companies will tell you, it’s also important to consider the user experience.
What Is User Experience?
The simplest way of describing user experience is any way in which a customer, or potential customer, interacts with your business.
In terms of web design there are many factors which need to be taken into consideration:
- Accessibility of Information
- Ease of movement around your site
- Ability to pay funds
- Awareness of the site
All of these factors and more are contact points between a user and your website, this means you need to look at your website design to ensure that these points are optimized to ensure the best possible experience for every visitor.
It is also important to note that user experience covers the integration of products. No product is completely stand alone, there is always something that can compliment it or even improve it. Building a user experience means understanding how these products connect and ensuring that the potential consumer is shown these connections.
This can increase your sales but it does more than that. It improves the user experience and shows them that you know your products and what else may be of interest to them.
A great example of this is the iPhone. The user experience is not just visiting a website to purchase the phone. It also covers operating the phone, getting support, and even dealing with returns or other issues. All of these are part of the user experience, separate but integrated.
Understanding this point will help to ensure you give the very best possible experience.
The Why, What, And How
To get the user experience right it is important to consider why a consumer would want a specific product. If these reasons are vague then you’ll need to ensure the consumer has access to a good set of reasons. This will help to justify their purchase.
The what relates to hat can be done with a product. Again, the iPhone is a great example. Originally this was just a phone, now, it does so much more; your customers need to know just how many different things it can do and why it will be so beneficial to them.
Finally, the how is how easy the product is to use. A product needs to look aesthetically pleasing but it also needs to be easy to use.
A product that fulfills these criteria will become popular via word of mouth, as well as digital media channels. If it doesn’t fulfill these criteria it is not going to get the support that you need it to.
In short, the user experience must be considered as soon as the idea for a product is conceived. A product that is designed with the end user in mind is more likely to succeed.
All you have to do is ensure all of these factors are easily recognizable when potential customers visit your website!
The Bigger Picture
But, user experience is more than just being aware of how a visitor will see your site, it’s about assessing how this interaction can create a connection that will draw a visitor back to you again and again. In short, you want them to be a long-term customer.
This means that even your logo and company name are part of the user experience. It needs to be short enough to be easily remembered and relevant enough to tell people what your business offers.
That’s a big enough ask but when considering web design you have to go a step further, it’s essential to look at loading time. Most visitors will stay on a page for up to 7 seconds, that’s all the time you have to impress them and get their interest.
A logo that loads slowly may never even be fully loaded before the visitor is moving on!
That’s why some of the best sites are so simple, they load quickly, tell the visitor what they’re about, and let them get started finding the answers to their needs.
User experience in web design also needs to extend into the type of viewing device being used. Mobile devices have now overtaken computers as the number one way to view a webpage. This means your web design needs to instantly convert to the size screen your visitor is using.
If it doesn’t, you’re likely to lose a potential customer.
You’re going to need to think about every element of your web design n terms of how it will look on a desktop, a mobile device, and how easy it is to switch between the two.
The more complicated your website the harder it will be to get the best possible user experience.
The Best Starting Point
If you’re still struggling with the concept of user experience then take a few moments to ask family, friends, or even people on the street what they think of a particular company or a well-known website.
Their response will illustrate the factors that are most important to any user:
- Ease of use
- Search Capabilities
If you can incorporate these factors into a web page and allow it to transform between mobile and desktop, then you’re a long way to getting the best possible user experience.
But, the websites that really stand out and give the best user experience are those that focus on adding a little personalization into the webpage. Even something as simple as greeting an existing customer by name can enhance the user experience and improve your turnover!
The user experience starts from the moment they type in your web address or see you in the search results, everything you do from then on will affect the way they perceive your website and your business; you only have one chance to get it right.