December 10 , 2019
The Value of a Positive User Experience Design
In the age of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, businesses have realised the power of social networking platforms and mobile apps. Creating an online workspace can help you build better teams, expand networks, and encourage collaboration.
Many businesses have tried and failed to jump on the bandwagon by creating their own online tools, apps or websites. Whether it’s too many technical hiccups, missing their target audience, or offering the wrong functionality, finding the recipe for success is difficult.
Join us as we explore the mysterious art of user experience (UX) design and its role in creating engaging online platforms.
What is UX Design?
Product development expert, Tomer Sharon, describes UX design as “the art and science of generating positive emotions through product interactions.”
Although there’s no clear-cut definition of what constitutes ‘good UX design’, most experts agree that it’s all about the end customer and the ease-of-use or pleasure they get from interacting with a brand.
UX design includes a wide range of disciplines including interaction design, visual aesthetics, website architecture, and even copywriting. Getting UX right is certainly a team effort.
For digital designers, positive UX design helps attract new users, improve customer retention, and importantly, increase the number of daily active users (DAU). Emerging software businesses rely on these key metrics to attract seed investment and prove the feasibility of minimum viable products (MVPs).
Founder and CEO of Conduit Labs, Nabeel Hyatt, coins the term “stickiness” to describe how addictive users find a product. Usage data helps verify the stickiness of a digital platform to attract outside investment.
Four Pillars of UX Design
Before we dive into the nitty-gritty of digital UX design, digital developers and designers need to ask themselves four key questions:
- Is the current interface intuitive and easy to use? Good user experience design will make sense and be simple to navigate.
- Is your supporting content relevant and useful? Text and information need to be carefully placed on apps and websites, the screen real estate must serve a clear purpose and offer solutions to practical problems.
- Is the content accessible to everyone? UX design must be available and usable for all people and should not exclude anyone. This means people with disabilities should be kept in mind when designing functions.
- Are people attracted to the platform? The ultimate aim of UX design is to create apps, websites or platforms people want to use.
Answering these four questions will help developers and designers produce engaging digital products, that serve their customers’ needs and allows the platform to grow in a sustainable fashion.
Benefits of Positive UX Design
Now we’ve covered the basics; it’s time to explore the benefits of good UX design. Let’s take a deep dive into how businesses can rely on UX to build bigger and better online communities.
Communication is the key to the success of any online community. Whether you’re connecting strangers through a dating app or building business connections through a professional networking platform, seamless communicating with other users is essential.
Each day, an estimated 65 billion messages are exchanged via WhatsApp alone. The so-called digital revolution is changing the way we communicate in all walks of life, and developers must take note of this when designing virtual messaging functionality.
Interestingly, some online platforms are beginning to introduce intentional communication barriers to simulate more realistic social situations and push the platform to serve a particular purpose.
For example, when a male and female match on the online data platform, Bumble, the app only allows the female to kickstart the conversation. Designed to empower female choice, Bumble’s bold decision to employ communication restrictions has paid off.
What was once a small Texas startup has grown into a multi-million dollar empire with 22 million registered users and year-on-year growth of 70%.
Collaboration for International Teams
With many modern businesses operating remotely from the four corners of the Earth, building online platforms that connect users and promote collaboration is an important part of UX design.
Business tools, such as Collude, are helping businesses build engaging teams and increase productivity by creating a shared space to make group decisions, delegate work, and share documents.
Here at Collude, we offer businesses and associations a unique opportunity to develop and expand their professional networks, connect with your experts, and promote collaboration across teams. We pride ourselves on our intuitive user experience, which creates a wonderfully unique way to do business.
Improve Accessibility to Technology
There’s no point building an amazing platform with an incredible user experience if people can’t access it.
Accessibility is key to building sustainable social networks and making it as easy as possible to register new users. Slick registration processes reduce the number of potential users lost before they’ve even had a chance to try the app.
Specifically for gaming apps, it costs almost $3 to acquire a single user, over $5 to convince that user to register, and incredibly, over $100 to convert him/her into a paying customer.
Why spend thousands of pounds recruiting new users, if you haven’t created an intuitive UX to convert them into active customers?
Simplify & Automate Mundane Processes
We all know the feeling: you’ve told your broadband provider your entire life story over the phone, only to be redirected to another operator who asks the exact same questions.
It’s frustrating, right?
Positive UX design involves creating platforms that simplify tedious tasks and automate repetitive processes to save users valuable time and energy. Attention is the new oil for the digital world — it’s important not to waste human attention on tasks that don’t add to a user’s experience.
In the words of Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella, “The true scarce commodity is increasingly human attention.”
Shockingly, a recent study estimates the average human attention span is just 8 seconds.
Digital platforms with efficient UX designs will encourage users to use their free time to create engaging content and play an active role in online conversations.
Strike a Balance Between Rational & Irrational Behaviour
The art of successful UX design is to understand how people will interact with a digital product. Humans are damn complicated.
Luckily, access to usage data and user research helps developers make sense of complex behaviours and experiment with beta testing to introduce gradual improvements to user experience.
The best user experience platforms will strike a subtle balance between creating a methodical interface which is easy to follow (i.e. something a robot could understand) and giving users the opportunity to venture off-piste and use the platform in their own unique way.
Remember, it’s important to put your customer needs first when designing an online platform, and empowering users to build bigger and better communities.
Positive user experience design is invaluable in any product however it is also very quantifiable if the UX is done right. When a product makes the user feel more welcome, when the interface is more intuitive the user wants to spend more time using it and this will generate more revenue for the business.