How Improving User Experience Can Drive Sales
In a world where almost everything can be done digitally, no company or business can survive without some form of an online presence. Most, if not all, successful companies today have a website or an app, or both, to help them reach as many customers as they can. E-commerce is increasingly becoming their mode of doing business, and the website or app is their store.
Growing Sales by Improving User Experience
The quality of the product or service you are offering is essential to the success of your business, but this is not the only factor. The ability of the online shopper to view and purchase your wares conveniently and quickly can also spell the difference between success and failure. It is referred to as user experience or UX. It is similar to the displays, signage, rack layout, and customer support in a retail store. It is designed to lure the shopper in, make a successful sale, and gain a loyal customer.
In a nutshell, a good UX helps simplify things for the customer, making it easier for them to retrieve information about a product or service, submit relevant requests, make a purchase, or meet any other need. This convenience encapsulates the very reason why a shopper goes online instead of a brick-and-mortar shop. Some of the factors that contribute to UX are the flow of information or communication on the website, the quality of the images and fonts, speed of loading, and support tools that enable price and quality comparison.
User experience is a very broad topic that is still misunderstood to this day, and it is not an exact science. Much of it involves invoking emotional or behavioural responses that would make the user say “yes” to clicking your URL, browsing your product or service, and purchasing it. But make no mistake, UX is an effective marketing tool that can guide customers through the conversion funnel if used properly. For instance, a website optimized with mobile capabilities can increase sales by 30%, decrease bounce rate by 50%, and increase the number of products sold by 70%. In addition, basing your web development on UX can cut the time and inefficiencies by 50%, saving you precious marketing dollars.
Some companies still fail to make the connection between user experience and profits, believing that the quality of their product or service and its price are enough to make a conversion. It may have been true in simpler times, but in the complex modern market of today, you would need much more to separate yourself from the rest and be noticed by the customer.
Wireframing, Mock-up, and Prototyping for Optimal User Experience
User Interface Components
Mock-up, wireframing, and prototyping are terms often used in UI/UX design, but most people are still confused about their differences and how they work exactly. Here is some information to help you understand each term and differentiate it from one another:
What is Wireframing?
A wireframe is the crude output of the ideation process in the very early stages of UX design. It is a rough draft of how your website or app would look like, presenting the contents of the main pages, outlining their structure and layout, and displaying the basic website or app interfaces.
It is important to go through this phase during web design for three reasons. First, a wireframe is easier to communicate with customers and clients, making it easier to share design ideas. Second, it is easy to build. All you need is a pen and paper to make a rough sketch of the website or app, or you could use a design tool that can be found easily online such as Sketch or Adobe User Experience. Lastly, it is a super cost-effective process, yet very effective to share the fundamental sketches of a project. If you present your ideas and the customer decides to go in another direction, you would have no hesitations going back to the drawing board.
What is a Mock-up?
A mock-up is a more fleshed out wireframe, providing customers with more details about the contents and functions of the website or the app. It can be low-fidelity but also high-fidelity, looking more like the finished product, although it is still not clickable or interactive. A mock-up can help in the later stages of design where projects have to be reviewed by the team so iterations or improvements can be made systematically, quickly, and cost-efficiently.
What is Prototyping?
A prototype is fully serviceable and interactive, with a high-fidelity interface. It looks and works very much like the final product and is used to test for potential issues. With all the interactions and animations functional and almost complete, it can also be used to gauge if it satisfies customer needs. It is a good opportunity to add last-minute ideas, features, or designs before making a bigger commitment to the development stage.