UX. I know what you’re probably thinking: another important acronym in the world of technology? WTF?? The world is full of fads, crazes, and various other trends that show up to solve all of our marketing problems. However, when it comes to UX, this is one trend we do actually want to learn more about and apply it to our websites.
In case you are wondering, UX stands for “User Experience” and it's the one thing that stands between good and bad web design. Whether you are creating a brand new website or refreshing your current one with a redesign, skipping UX testing can ultimately lead to underperforming results. Don't believe me? Let me give you an example. Most of us have had to travel via airplanes either for business or pleasure; the experiences we have before, during and after said travel has a HUGE impact on whether we choose to travel with the same airline in the future. The same can be said for a website's UX. How easily a potential customer can find, research and purchase a service/product will be the difference between a return customer and a very vocal, disgruntled one.
Multiple studies including this one from Walker predict that in the next few years customer experience will overtake price and product as the main competitive advantage between brands. And this is not limited to desktop websites ̶ according to Lavacon’s The State of Mobile Publishing, not only are mobile users 5X more likely to leave a site that is not optimized for mobile but 79% of them will attempt to find another website where they can finish what they were doing.
With that in mind, I've put together 4 areas to consider when taking UX into account for your next website redesign.
Start at the Beginning
While non-responsiveness is still a common issue it is one that is easily remedied based on a thorough UX analysis. From the perspective of our digital marketing agency, the best way to create a UX that leads to better performing results is to begin with a comprehensive GDD analysis before creating layouts/wireframes. Using tools such as Lucky Orange and evaluating what visitors are currently doing helps to set the tone for how to help them continue to accomplish those tasks and any additional ones being implemented.
In many instances designers and developers are not brought together during the most important phases of a project. We believe that cooperation is one of the main reasons that we can successfully execute incredible designs for our clients that stand head and sholders above other websites built without UX in mind. While a designer can see the pixels, images and other visual aspects of a potential design, a developer can help guide what the technology is actually able to do or find a better way to create an awesome concept without sacrificing load times.
Find the Best Option
The beauty of programming is that there are multiple ways to get to the same result. But not all paths are created equal. A great example is a client who came to us with a very image heavy design. The design was gorgeous in PSD; however, when it came time to implement it would have been more than the servers could reasonably handle. The most optimal way to handle this particular design was to not only reduce the number of images, optimize all images while maintaining quality and also add a slider that would scroll through the images as the page was loading. This allowed for visitors to view the page without having to wait for all of the images to load.
Overall, UX is a trend that will continue to evolve and which should become an integral part of any website redesign/maintenance. If you have the choice between good and bad web design it is a no brainer to take the extra step and perform some UX testing.