We have been in the online marketing business ever since it was a thing. We have seen the ebb and fall of many trends. When a new “trend” comes on the market, everyone in the industry jumps aboard. Sliders? YES. Side navigation bars with lots of drop downs? SIGN ME UP. Yes, though those trends are now falling in the downward spiral, we are coming up to an unprecedented chapter in online marketing: UX design.
What is UX Design?
UX simply stands for “user experience.” It addresses the most fundamental and integral reason for being: the user. Integrating UX Design into your website development/modification process ensures that your company’s site will be valuable to those who most need it: current & potential clients.
Design Like You’re…Drunk?
I’m not sure who exactly coined this saying, but it has a core of truth to it (there are some people who take it maybe a little too literally).
Think about it.
Any company owner already knows about the products and services. Therefore, the development of a new website must not be for the owner. It’s also probably not for the employee (although I myself have been grateful for a well-developed website when I’m confused about some aspect of our professional sphere).
The uninformed user does not have the full intellectual background of your intention and the substance of your business. Consequently, their experience is going to be on a much more superficial level.
“Less is More”
This doesn’t mean that you have to have a site that looks like it was hard coded from the 90s. It does mean that every component, whether intricately designed or not, should have a readily apparent value.
A highly interactive website does little good if the user has no idea how to interact.
For example, I have a smartphone with a lot of awesome capabilities. Do I utilize it? Not at all.
Get Back to the Basics
A joint goal of all business owners is the elusive, attractive ROI. To obtain this, we spend a lot of time and money on things like keyword research, pay per click/pay per impression, social media ads, an active Twitter feed, etc. Our company’s websites are so visible it’s insane. And yet – something’s missing. With all of our excellent lead generation programs and tracking information, we forget the one, inescapable fact:
My website might be poorly designed.
Fix the Problem
UX amounts to more than a pretty homepage layout. It also means that:
- Each landing page is well-written
- The font is large enough to be read easily
- Buttons are prominent and click-able
- Call to Actions are logically placed throughout the content so that it makes sense to click on them
- Images are optimized for website layout and page load time
Each aspect of your user’s experience should be retraced to find those not-so-pretty moments.
Action Plan: Find an Honest Person
Arriving at the end of this blog should bring you to one inescapable conclusion:
I need to find honest feedback.
It doesn’t take a professional to visit a website and tell you what needs to be changed. It takes an honest person.
Find a good editor, a friend, family member, even a customer to spend about 10 – 15 minutes on your website. Beg them to be brutally honest about what they see. They may not have the solutions to the problems, but I guarantee they’ll be able to point out where the root UX problems lie.
For more information on integrating UX design into your company’s website, contact the team at Art Unlimited.