Joe Dawson

Joe is the director of Creative.onl and oversees all of the design and technical work that we produce. Find him on Twitter.

Do you think your app is beautiful? That your website is a visual delight? You could be completely wrong. You could be losing customers, brand loyalty and a lot of money if you don’t get a UX specialist on board when you design your app or website.

Your app or website’s user experience (UX) will make or break it.

The UX needs to be at the heart of your design process, ahead of its aesthetics, and from day one.

Let’s think about UX in another way, as this post from User Experience Design so eloquently puts it: “Why does one choose to use Gmail over Yahoo, Medium over Blogger — if the features are 99% the same? It’s definitely not about disrupting usability standards. It’s about that additional layer of sophistication that can only be achieved when you put enough time and brainpower into the tiniest details, the most subtle animations, the most elegant transitions – not just for the sake of creating whimsical dribbble shots.”

A UX specialist has the skills and knowledge to produce the very best website for the only people that matter: your users. They optimise the design to give your users everything they need, without overloading them with unnecessary information. Here are five very good reasons to use one:

  1. You will get it right, first time

UX evangelists regularly quote Robert Pressman’s book Software Engineering: A Practitioner’s Approachwhere the author advocates introducing UX as early as possible in the design process to prevent mounting costs. The book states that every dollar spent to resolve a problem during product design would cost $10 to resolve at the development stage and $100 after the product’s release.

These problems could arise from an incorrect assumption about how users will behave, for example. Early feedback from your target audience could avoid such mistakes. Depending on the project, we conduct user research and persona testing to make sure your users can and want to use your site or app.

In other words, using a UX specialist will save you a small fortune in costly redesigns. Instead of giving you a website that looks good, it gives you a site that your users use.

  1. And you’ll put your customers first

We’re entering an era of customer empowerment like no other where customers are shaping business strategies. This “age of the customer” demands the highest quality and personalised digital experience, according to research house Forrester.

A UX design-led process meets this demand. Unlike a graphic design-led process, where the aesthetics are prioritised, UX gives users what they want and puts them at the centre of the design process.

This is important from a customer retention perspective. A user spends only 10 to 15 seconds on your website. If it does not give them the information they need in this tiny timeframe, they’ll soon look elsewhere. UX gives you a competitive advantage.

“Customers will only be loyal to a brand that maintains a meaningful, interactive relationship with them,” according to Daisoo Lee, interactive design director at branding agency StartJG. “Brands won’t be able to survive the competition without integrating UX into their business.”

  1. Your staff are free to work, not support your customers

If users can find the information they want easily on your site, they will not need to contact your customer support team. This has an obvious impact on your overheads. You will see cost savings and staff are freed from answering the same questions to focus their efforts elsewhere.

When we design client sites and apps, the functionality of the site is discussed before the visual design. Otherwise, you end up with a digital experience that may look beautiful, but is frustrating to use and interact with – resulting in a lot of unnecessary support calls.

  1. Your baskets will be fuller

If a site or app is intuitive to use, there is another consequence: your users will want to browse and buy. This process is known as Conversion Rate Optimisation and it’s a tool a UX specialist can use to get your users interacting with your site in the way you need them to.

For example, Hubspot increased click-through conversions by 21% on its site simply by changing a button from green to red. Online travel company Expedia made a whopping $12 million by removing one field from their online form. A UX specialist will understand how small changes to your digital experience can make a big difference to your ROI.

  1. Customer acquisition suddenly gets a lot easier

If a customer enjoys using your site, they are more likely to become a brand advocate. They’ll use social media outlets and word of mouth to further promote your website or app to their friends – and the popularity of your product will snowball.

Good UX and SEO are also intrinsically linked. If a user clicks on your website and, within a few seconds, clicks away – your search engine rankings are dented. Google and other search engines reward websites deemed relevant to users – and they measure this by assuming the more useful a website is, the longer a user spends on it.

Getting a UX specialist on board with your app or website design brings a new level of expertise to the table. You can still have that beautiful app or visually stunning site, but you’ll also get the site or app your users want, not the one you think they need, and a much better return on investment.

Latest insight articles

Got questions?

Talk to Joe

We love meeting new people. Get in touch to talk about how we can help you.

hello@creative.onl

+44 (0)116 318 0488

Insights direct to your inbox

Stay in the loop by signing up to receive our email updates on design, technology and business.

Sign up →
 
View previous editions