14 Effective Ways to Provide a Seamless User Experience
In this article you’ll read about:
- How to design a UX friendly webpage
- The importance of personalization
- Why you don’t need every information from your leads
…and much more!
Did you know that your sales can go up by as much as 225% when you improve user experience to give users the right information at the right time? If you think investing in user experience is too expensive, think again. Every $1 invested in UX results in a return between $2 and $100.
In an era of digital-first experiences, the user experience (UX) of your app or website is usually the first and final impression of your company. Given how powerful delivering the right user experience has become, companies are bending over backwards trying to design the perfect UX.
Table of Contents:
- What Is UX Design?
- How to Build a Seamless User Experience
- Focus on homepage design
- Make Sure You’re Mobile-Friendly
- Offer a personalized experience
- Double Down on Strong Analytics
- Organise your menu structure correctly
- Get Feedback
- Avoid Unnecessary Data Collection
- Build Authenticity
- Interact with Customers using state-of-the-art chat support
- Social Media Integration
- Allay Security Concerns
- Mention Prices Clearly
- Internal search is the key to seamless navigation
- CTA (Call to Action) Matters
What Is UX Design?
UX design is nothing but the experience that your customers have when they use your product. Product here implies not only the tangible good or service that you’re selling, but also the content you create to reach out to customers. The whole point of great user experience is to enable people to navigate through your website in the shortest possible way, revealing key information at just the right time.
How to Build a Seamless User Experience
Fortunately, creating a seamless user experience isn’t as complex as it’s made out to be. Getting a few basics right will ensure that you’re able to build a great UX design. Here are some of the most effective ways to do it.
Focus on homepage design
Your homepage is the first impression of your website, which is why getting it right is so crucial. Did you know that 35% of users fail to complete simple tasks on the average website? Luckily, small design hacks go a long way in building a homepage that tells users exactly where they need to go. For instance, using sliders (revolving carousel placed on the homepage) helps to deliver major information like product portfolio, shopping categories, important services offered, latest offers, etc. in a concise manner. Sliders help focus customer attention on things that are most relevant on your homepage on that day.
Make Sure You’re Mobile-Friendly
In 2019, mobile devices (excluding tablets) accounted for a whopping 48% of web page views across the world. This number was the highest in mobile-first economies of Asia and Africa with Nigeria leading the pack of the highest rate of mobile internet traffic, followed by India, Ghana, and Kenya. And given the number of users that are now becoming a part of the global mobile-first economy, this percentage is likely to go up drastically in the next few years.
As a brand, RWD (Responsive Web Design) is now a necessity. RWD is an approach to web design that aims to create a website that provides optimal viewing experience across a wide variety of devices, from tablets to mobile phones to laptops to desktops. This means that navigating through the website across devices should be easy, with minimal scrolling, panning, and resizing.
Remember, the same goes for landing pages you link to from your homepage. When choosing from landing page templates, pay attention to whether the template is mobile-friendly as well.
Offer a personalized experience
Did you know that in 2017, personalized home page promotions influenced 85% of customers to buy, while personalized shopping cart recommendations had impact on 92% of online shoppers? There is no substitute for personalization. Consider a scenario where you’re in a space that’s new and potentially disruptive; there is a chance, not every customer out there is aware of what your product offers. So, you would have a different UX for seasoned experts who already know what your product is all about, and a completely different one for novices who will need more information before they even think about a possible purchase. Tools like cookie re-targeting and geo-location are advanced in understanding your customers engagement with your site, and customizing their experience accordingly.
Double Down on Strong Analytics
The right analytics tools are the key to improving user experience over time. The first website/app is nothing but the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) – its changes and updates should be based on how customers provide feedback. Advanced analytics platforms like Kissmetrics, Hotjar, and Crazy Egg giveall kinds of user information that can drive more informed decision making and, in turn, more refined user experience.
For instance, Crazy Egg provides heat maps and scroll maps which help you understand what users are doing on your site. This can allow you to keep tweaking your website/app until the user experience is near-perfect.
Organise your menu structure correctly
Planning and organising website content in a way that makes it easily navigable can be a huge challenge. On one hand, there is so much about your product that you want to say, while on the other, you have to ensure to make the user experience absolutely seamless. Think about your website content like a restaurant menu. Organising the menu into logical categories, depending upon the product or service, goes a long way in making navigation smoother. Say you’re a landscaper who offers a variety of landscaping services; a good way of organising your services on your website would be by creating different landing pages for different service categories as seen in the image below.
A bad way of doing it would be to have one main page that lists all your services, such as this:
In other words, the more organised your menu structure is, the easier it will be for customers to navigate.
There are numerous ways to test your product. Some companies use a combination of split testing (A/B testing) and analytics to understand what’s working and what isn’t. This means that they keep tweaking one thing in the website to test how users react, and then keep the version that the users prefer more. This A/B testing happens with a number of features over multiple iterations, allowing product managers to zero in on the best user experience.
Other companies, particularly in the early stages, go for more direct testing. This could mean getting a group of random users to come to their office and use their product for 30 minutes in return for a voucher. Many companies follow these testing sessions with an informal group discussion among the users, which again provides qualitative feedback. Yet other companies send push notifications to their most active users requesting them for interviews. They then conduct in-depth qualitative interviews via call or chat.
The bottom line is that testing, no matter how you choose to do it, is the only real way to improve user experience over time.
Avoid Unnecessary Data Collection
Companies often make a very common mistake – they feel the need to know everything about users registering to their platform. This means a long drawn-out data entry form before someone can become a registered user. This is a sure-shot way of making customers drop out. Nothing says poor user experience like expecting customers to give all their personal information just to sign up on your platform. In fact, Expedia actually earned $12 million in additional revenue by just taking this one step – they removed the “company name” field from their registration form.
For certain kinds of businesses, building an aura of trust and authenticity is the only way to scale up. For instance, if you’re an e-commerce platform selling branded products, your UX has to revolve around creating an authentic experience for prospective customers.
Let’s take a real-world example. UK-based e-commerce website Express Watches A/B tested two different kinds of pages for selling Seiko watches. The first one focused entirely on product features and discounts. While the second one built authenticity by assuring customers that they were investing in an original Seiko watch.
The second page saw sales jump by a whopping 107%.
Interact with Customers using state-of-the-art chat support
The more interactive your user experience is, the better will the rates of customer engagement be. This doesn’t mean that you have to employ customer support staff to chat with users. Today, AI-based technologies like NLP (Natural Language Processing) have become so advanced that you can automate entire conversations, making your customer feel like they’re talking to a friend as they navigate your website. In fact, Intuit increased their conversions by 211% simply by introducing proactive chat on their website.
To this end, live chat and co-browsing integrations can be a great step in the right direction. It may deliver on-time support to boost user experience and help you slash customer churn. Particularly, customer support tool and software deliver personalized live chat support to users with the all-important human touch.
Social Media Integration
If you think that social media is not relevant as far as user experience goes, think again. Social media is an integral part of your user experience and needs to be treated as such. It’s not enough to add the links to your different social media pages on your website footer footer, these need to be integrated into the UX itself.
Why is social media such an important part of the user experience? Social media contains the brand story, peer reviews, and effective visuals — all of which play a major role in convincing users to try your product. So if your social media presence is not being captured in your user experience, it’s time to make some changes.
Allay Security Concerns
Even today, customers shopping online are wary of security measures when it comes to making online payments. They simply need assurance that their payment details are going to be safe, especially when dealing with a relatively unknown brand. A simple measure like a security seal can make a huge difference. For instance, Oriental Furniture decided to allay their customers’ security concerns by displaying a security seal. On clicking the seal, customers got a message saying they were protected for up to $10000 in case of any data theft. This allayed their concerns and the company saw a 7.6% increase in conversions.
Mention Prices Clearly
Many a time companies, particularly B2B ones, hesitate to display their prices on the website. They feel they can negotiate terms with individual clients based on their paying capacity. In other cases, the prices are mentioned to customers only after placing the order.
However, this strategy usually ends up backfiring. Having your prices displayed upfront, before the customer makes a purchase decision, goes a long way in building their trust. Figure out your pricing strategy with customer surveys, competitor benchmarking, and split testing, and then display it clearly on the website. Sephora did an A/B test where they offered one page without pricing and the other with prices clearly mentioned. The page with the prices mentioned saw the number of leads double.
Internal search is the key to seamless navigation
This one goes without saying; unless your website is easy to navigate, customers will drop off at an alarming rate. The key is to create a navigation experience that doesn’t require any thinking on the part of the user. Implementing effective internal search and smart suggestions will help you build clear-cut, unambiguous user flows into your website.
Again, there are countless examples of websites that have dramatically improved conversion rates by simply improving their navigation. Zen Windows, for instance, had an abysmal conversion rate of 0.75%. When they changed their site navigation, their conversion rates immediately went up to 2.95%.
CTA (Call to Action) Matters
The right CTA button can make or break conversions, especially on landing pages. To create the right Call to Action, you first need to figure out the one action that you’re optimizing for. It could be getting more subscribers for your email list or getting customer contact information or making a sale. In any case, pick one overarching goal and then optimize your CTA accordingly.
Once you’ve decided what the goal is, extensive split testing is the way to go. Try as many different texts to see what customers are responding to. Of course, make sure the CTA text is short, punchy, and to the point. The design of the CTA button is also crucial. Make sure that the button stands out on the page, and customer attention swerves towards it automatically. At the same time, keep in mind that the design shouldn’t be jarring in any way and should be in keeping with the overall theme and design of the website.
At the end of the day, designing great user experience is far simpler than what it’s made out to be. All the tips mentioned in the article are fairly straightforward and relatively inexpensive to execute. What’s important to remember is that the end goal of any user experience is conversion, and all execution should align towards that ultimate objective. As long as you follow these basic principles, and keep testing relentlessly, building great user experience should not be difficult at all.
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