Leveraging UX Thinking for Digital Marketing Success
By Arijit Banerjee
Instant gratification is the de-facto expectation in an on-demand digital economy, where consumers expect to get what they want - when they want it - with just a few taps and swipes on their mobile devices. A critical part of this experience is the ability to seamlessly access, find and review products or services. A study by comScore reveals that millennial attention span requires ads to feature in just five to six seconds. ‘UX’ or ‘user experience’ is therefore pivotal for businesses looking to attract traffic, convert consumer interest into revenues and improve customer loyalty.
While traditionally the term UX was associated with ‘product design’ and the user’s ultimate interaction with the product, it has now permeated all aspects of customer interaction, including digital marketing. The most successful marketers will tell you that adopting ‘UX thinking’ - as deeply as the product or UX teams do - is fundamental to your digital marketing success. A study by Forrester Research confirms that a well-designed user interface can increase a website’s conversion rate up to 200% while an overall engaging UX can improve the conversion rates up to 400%.
The key to improving ‘UX’ is to accept and understand its impact on your business. Given that online users want to be engaged, and quickly at that, what are some of the ways in which a business can make effective use of UX thinking in digital marketing? Here are a few key things to remember.
Time is money in the age of ‘quick results’
You have only a few seconds to make your case when a user visits your site or mobile app. It is a very tiny window to make a great first impression. Google, for example, calculated that it could lose eight million searches per day by slowing its search results merely by four-tenths of a second. Hence, it is bringing in changes in its search page behavior through semantics, etc. to speed up the search results. Your digital marketing UX needs to instantly hook visitors, hold their attention and help them navigate to the desired information. For this, your product, brand, content and design teams must work together to reach a strategic consensus on the focus areas after a thorough cost-benefit analysis. Also, consider UX ROI while prioritizing the metrics for assessing your UX.
User testing is necessary for getting a reality check
A case study shows that 79% of customers are less likely to buy again from a site where they experienced dissatisfaction. Continual use of marketing research to define and refine the next phases is the basis of good UX-based digital marketing. Running a user test, no matter how small the sample size, can help you get the most crucial insights into what your customers need.
User testing can help you revise your campaigns to better align with customer expectations and fix errors before they impact the business. The results of user testing should in fact form the holy grail of the developmental process, helping you further enhance your digital marketing.
Targeted messaging and customized experiences are the lynchpins of superior engagement
What’s the best way to apply the results of user testing? Use the information you have to develop user personas and gear your online presence as well as digital marketing initiatives accordingly. Integrate your website, mobile app, and social media channels early on to take a more targeted approach to meet your customers’ needs, and even exceed them by sharing relevant new information.
The recommendation section on sites such as Amazon, YouTube, and Netflix are all great examples of customization. They observe and record the behavior of users to make their search easier on their next visit. Familiarizing yourself with your consumers’ needs and preferences and customizing your digital marketing to suit their needs is the best way to win their loyalty.
Listen to what the data says
Paving the way to enhance your digital marketing through UX thinking requires a considerable amount of insights. It’s not enough to come up with innovative strategies that sound ‘good’. A data-driven approach that enables course correction through feedback analysis is imperative to success. A great tool that helps digital marketers create an effective user experience is Google Heart Metrics Framework. The tool can be used to identify the right mix of practical metrics that can help you measure the effectiveness of your UX.
To understand how digital marketers can benefit from UX thinking, all you have to do is look at forward-looking companies such as Apple that make UX a top priority for driving growth. In reality, developing a UX mindset is quite simple - it involves thinking about and asking the right questions. Digital marketers who employ UX thinking will be able to create engaging and personalized campaigns and initiatives simply by focusing on the people behind the interactions.