What is UX and what does it mean for website owners

Everything you may have heard about User Experience so far it’s only a top of the iceberg, a drop in an ocean. All that is just an entry to the huge area of expertise. User Experience is a discipline which evolves along with us. And we need to keep learning to be able to notice any changes.

If you have not heard anything about user experience design so far, then please allow me for a quick recap.

What is UX?

So what is the user experience design (UX) then? I like to explain it as the every single action you take to increase your client’s comfort. It’s all you do to make his journey with your company’s website better.

User experience term had been created by Donald Norman in 1990 to group and define all actions taken to enhance online user satisfaction. By that, we understand improving usability, accessibility and pleasure in the interaction between the user and the product. For example, larger font on the website increase readability. A quick and easy to fill form speed up the contact process. Thanks to a simple and straightforward navigation it’s easy to a user to find the page he needs.

User experience design includes planning and designing your client’s path on the website. It starts from the landing page, through product pages, down to the contact page, or shopping cart. Everything that is planned and designed to make their journey easier and more pleasant is a user experience design.

How can you design your UX

To incorporate UX design into your business website, we need to step back and start from scratch. We need to sit down with a drawing board and analyse your business deeply. We need to commit a research to understand who is your client and how do they use your website. We have to recognise what do they try to achieve there, and why do they fail.
Based on that we need to find new ways how to improve user experience and plan them. At the every step, we need to test the results to make sure we are on the right path.

Then we start bringing new ideas into life by designing clickable prototype. Thanks to that we can test it with end users to eliminate any flows and bottle-neck elements. We need to find out if our design is working for your client before we jump into final web design and development. Only this way we can save time and money on costly mistakes.

Once the website is ready it’s time for usability tests. We need to check once again if the work we have done is implemented correctly. Also, we need to eliminate any possible bugs.

After the website is launched we need to perform A/B testing which is a way to measure which version of the design converts the best. For example, Fab.com increased click-through rate by 49% by placing text “Add to cart” to the button instead of the cart icon.
Photobox increased registration among new visitors by 14% after changing their homepage.

OK, so now you have a basic knowledge of what is UX and which elements are included in the process. Sound like a long path? Well, it is. And you don’t want to especially rush on it. It’s better to spend few months on designing UX and make it correctly, than bringing to life the very first idea and loose money if it didn’t work.

The real example

One of my most favourite examples of great UX is Ryanair. The company which used to be the worst airline in Europe. Ryanair was hated by every passenger flying with them, but at the same time, it was the cheapest airline in Europe.

Last year Ryanair made a huge shift. They have redesigned their website and mobile application. And now it’s one of the best airline website available online. So what is such fantastic about Ryanair’s UX?

• it’s super easy to search for a flight – type the first letter and all matching cities shows up – saves your time

• it allows you to save your searched flight to control price change and compare with other flights. No more spreadsheets and notes – saves your time

• it remembers your passport details so you don’t have to type it on and on again – saves your time

• the mobile app allows you to use digital tickets instead of printing them – save your money

• during the booking process, it gives you the option to reserve a car park space on the airport, book a hotel and hire a car. No need to search independently later – saves your time

• and finally, it looks good – large icons, fonts, lots of space, clear and consistent design, easy navigation – saves your time

ryanair-barcelona-flight-compare-prices

ryanair-website-b-search-barcelona

As you can see, all the improvements done by Ryanair bring two benefits to the user- saving their time and money. Ryanair understands that booking the flight tickets it was a long and boring process. Now, thanks to research and recognising user need they could be able to offer a simple and time-saving solution. And this is all about!

So now it’s your turn to have a critical look at your website to recognise if it is user-friendly.

  • Do you offer a smooth and easy journey from the landing page to the conversion?
  • Does your user feel secure on your website?
  • Check how many users abandon your shopping cart, how many leave the page short after they landed on it?
  • Do you know what is the reason?
  • Is your form easy to fill or do you need 6 mandatory answers to contact you?

All these and many other questions will help you to determine if your website is working well with UX? If you have any doubts about it, I’m happy to help you. Drop me a line and I can see what can be done.

Thanks for reading and see you next time!