From part one of this article, we have established that, user experience is fundamentally about the relationship between consumers and a brand (ideals, ethos, culture, values, norms, products and services).
Now the next question one is forced to ask is, if my brand decides to engage a user experience designer, what do we stand to gain or what benefits are inherent in this kind of venture?
I will outline some of the benefits of user experience design. But note that this is in no way exhaustive.
Ok, lets jump in.
UGC becomes opportunities
If you are wondering what UGC stands for, its User-generated content. According to Wikipedia, It is defined by any form of content such as blogs, wikis, discussion forums, posts, chats, tweets, podcasting, pins digital images, video, audio files, and other forms of media that was created by users of an online system or service, often made available via social media websites.”
Big and small brands have access to user-generated content e.g. posts, tweets, comments, feedback etc from their consumers. This creates opportunities to improve the overall customer experience over time. Consumers would not talk where they would not be heard. So if the engagement and experience is woeful, access to such insightful information would not be possible.
Earn consumers’ trust
One of the hardest thing to earn in business of any kind is trust. And the problem about with it is that, once you loose it, its hard to get it back. It is also as hard to earn it in the first place. Sometimes, you wonder, why consumers go after some brands even though they have competition who offer product or services that matches in quality for far less? The answer is simple, trust. Consumers would trust a brand that puts their ‘feelings’ in mind. From what it looks like, how it feels to how it works, everything counts. If a consumer experiences poor technical support, or a sales person was rude, the user is likely to develop a negative perception of that product’s brand and I need not say what that translates to.
When a consumer knows that their experience is paramount to you as a brand, they would keep coming back. Even when they cannot afford to buy the offerings at the time, they would still come around. Well, I do and I know many other people who do too. It a simple case of consumer trust.
Builds stronger brand community
More and more consumers are relying on the opinions and recommendations of other online users when making a purchase decision. And interestingly, consumers love to share their experience about their interaction with a brand. This far outweighs all the marketing strategies that any brand could engage as the testimonial from a consumer to another is what ‘sells’ a brand. If their experience was great, they would talk about it and almost inherently promote it. This would grow the brand’s audience, and increase its reach.
Avoid unnecessary overhead
Some very costly problems could be avoided. Many brands would tell you, it costs dramatically more to fix problems after the fact than it does to incorporate consumer feedback early in the process. The problems that come up may result in lost conversion opportunities or expensive fixes.
If you give user experience design priority – the right place – not after the production life-cycle i.e. early in the process of your brand’s promotions and the likes, you can save significant amount and resources down the line.
The more consumers experience better offerings (products and/ or services), the more their expectations evolve. And this is happening at the speed of conversation. As they come across better experiences, they will switch without hesitating to the product and/or service that offers the best experience.
Therefore, to build better consumer experiences, you have to know how and where consumers are setting their expectations for your products and services.
That’s why, to build the best digital experiences for your customers, you have to know how and where they are setting their expectations for your products and services. If you know users’ reactions to competitors’ digital offerings, you can improve your own.
Ok, I have tried to outline some of the benefits of user experience design, howbeit, not exhaustive.
So, let’s be honest, everyone loves to share great moments, even you. So ask yourself, when a friend or family comes to you to ask about a brand that gave you next to the best experience ever on any platform, how are you likely to respond? I would leave that for you to ponder. Remember, you are a consumer too.
If I missed benefits that you feel are very important, please feel free to comment on that. I would love that. If you have questions, comments, thoughts, or opinions, please add them in the comments. If this has been helpful, please like and share with others. Thanks.