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CX Strategy

How to measure the impact of UX design on digital CX

The answer to a delightful customer experience is all about improving customer experiences across the website, mobile app, in-person interactions and multichannel campaigns — everywhere a customer interacts with a brand.

How to measure the impact of UX design on digital CXPhoto by

| Randi Mohr, VP, client success and marketing at Whereoware

"Customer experience" is on everyone's lips these days. That's because customer experience, or CX, has transformed from a marketing buzzword to an essential element of business success.

Today's consumers are less brand loyal. They have different shopping preferences and competition is higher than ever.

The stakes are high for brands. Nearly three-quarters of consumers will walk away after just a few poor experiences with a brand. Nearly half (49%) will leave after a single negative experience.

In an effort to win — or win back — customers, brands have rushed to optimize their loyalty programs, release new offerings, and rebrand themselves.

These are all worthwhile endeavors. But the answer to a delightful customer experience may lie much closer to home: by strategically improving customer experiences across your website, mobile app, in-person interactions, and multichannel campaigns, everywhere a customer interacts with your brand.

The powerful ROI of UX design

Effective user experience (UX) design has the power to engage customers and keep them coming back for more. When UX is done well, interacting with your brand feels seamless, and your customers' lives are easy. Users feel confident and rewarded when using your website or mobile app. Those kinds of feelings translate to higher customer satisfaction, increased loyalty, and higher revenue.

McKinsey has found that companies with top-performing designs have double the growth of their industry peers. Others have found that every 10% investment in UX strategy yields an 83% lift in conversion. Finally, research shows the more a company prioritizes their user experience, the higher their sales, customer engagement, and retention metrics.

How does UX design drive these incredible results? Because a good UX strategy focuses on customers first. User is the first word in user experience, and for good reason. When brands put their customers first, it creates a more profitable experience. At the same time, brands can sidestep many of the pitfalls that lead to lower revenues and customer churn.

Ultimately, good UX isn't just about design, it's about the impression you create and leave customers. UX strategy is built on understanding your customers' needs and challenges, and then making the incremental changes to improve their experience — whether that's through better messaging, better design, or better functionality.

UX mistakes that worsen the digital customer experience

Let's take a look at just one area of a website that plagues many e-commerce brands: the checkout page. With the average cart abandonment rate hovering just under 70%, many brands are at their wit's end for how to improve this page. And yet, many of the top reasons people abandon their cart are due to poor design decisions, such as:

  • The site forces them to create an account.
  • The checkout process is too long or complicated.
  • They couldn't calculate their total order cost up-front.
  • They simply didn't trust the website.

Zooming out from checkout, nearly all (94%) of the factors that cause a customer to mistrust or reject a website on a first impression are UX-related. These include:

  • Overly busy layout.
  • Lack of navigation.
  • Unappealing or bland design or color palette.
  • Too many pop-up ads.
  • Too much text.
  • Small print.
  • Poor search function.

Good news is, these are all issues that can be resolved — or prevented altogether — by measuring how customers' interact with your owned channels and where they display friction (by bouncing or abandoning).

Then, validate your data by simply connecting with your customers. Customer connection lies at the root of UX design. In addition to relying on design best practices, UX designers conduct user surveys and usability testing to test assumptions and figure out what actually works for your specific target audience. This research yields important answers as to how you can improve your customer experience. For example, users may need more social proof to trust you. Or, they may convert better if you offer a more personalized experience.

Solving for digital CX with stronger UX

Having a UX expert weigh in can help brands avoid common design missteps. Design best practices can inform how to optimize everything from color choice, use of white space, visual cues, and CTA buttons.

However, only usability testing and user surveys will help you discover how these variables make your target audience feel, or which CTA phrases speak most persuasively to them — creating an effective customer experience.

For example, over 90% of users rate an "easy navigation" as one of the most important elements of web design. Brands with some design savvy understand the basics of web design, like using a hamburger menu on mobile. But, it's really about having a navigation that gets users where they want to go. That's where UX strategy becomes really valuable. By understanding your users, UX strategists recommend navigation changes such as:

  • Including clear and descriptive product categories.
  • Grouping related items together, so as to limit paralysis of choice.
  • Experimenting with a visual navigation.
  • Offering robust search for users that are stuck.

Through user interviews, UX strategists can uncover how your audience utilizes your navigation. What are their top priorities when they arrive at your website or mobile app? And how can those be married with your brand's top priorities, a.k.a. the actions you want them to take?

Personalization is another top initiative for today's brands, with nearly half (44%) of consumers saying that a personalized shopping experience makes them more likely to become repeat buyers. UX strategy can be a benefit here as well, partnering with stakeholders to develop customer journeys that feel connected across channels.

A winning formula

It's a simple formula: better UX equals better CX. To create a digital customer experience that fosters connection and loyalty, you must invest in UX.

Putting customers first has always been the answer, from brick-and-mortar to digital. Connect with your customers, design for your customers, and revel in the results.

CX Strategy


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