The UX Effect: Things you might not know

The UX Effect: 7 Things You Might Not Know

The world of UX is vast. Just like our planet, things are constantly changing and evolving. The basics of how things work tend to stay the same, but the finer details are always being rethought and reimagined.

Even those who have worked in the field for years find themselves discovering new stuff on a regular basis That’s why so many people love working in the industry because you’re always kept on your toes and challenged in new ways. Here are some intriguing things you might not know about user experience.

User experience is constant

You can’t just ‘fix’ your website once and then expect it to match people’s expectations forever more. User Experience is an ongoing process, there are always new updates and tweaks to be made to improve things. Plus, the industry is constantly evolving with fresh techniques and new demands hovering on the UX horizon.

UX is a ranking signal & impacts SEO

User experience and SEO are not two separate things, they compliment each other. You can’t really have one without the other. If you read any information on the sort of things search engines like Google look for, you’ll see instantly that their primary concern is the user.

A search engine’s main goal is to serve up content that’s relevant to users, and put the best websites up top. So focussing on user experience if you want to rise in the rankings is a must, especially when it comes to things like site structure, speed and content.

User experience is for more than just websites

Say what? Yes, believe it or not, UX has existed for years in other arenas. It’s the process of making someone’s interaction with something as easy, smooth and straightforward as possible. Computers are built on user experience. Even the products you find around your home are designed specifically for you, the user. It’s not a new concept, it’s just that online user experience is a tad more complex.

You should design what people need, not necessarily what they want

You might be wondering if we’re serious when it comes to this one, but hear us out. Of course, you should have the user in mind, but remember that users might think they know what they want, when really they don’t. It’s kind of like wanting a Mr Whippy ice cream cone one day and a Magnum the next, you’re allowed to change your mind. Instead of just purely going on some feedback from your site visitors, try and back it up with research and analysis too. Because people aren’t always in the best position to determine what they really need.

Focus on what people use the most first

OK, so you’ve got a minuscule budget for now, but you want to try and do something. With limited resources, you will get the best results from focussing on the pages on your site that get used most frequently. Ever heard of the 80/20 rule? Realistically, 80% of your users will use only 20% of your website. So focus on improving the design and UX of that 20%, and then, when you’ve got the budget, you can move onto the rest.

A web designer/UX expert is a bit like an architect

If there’s a similar profession in the ‘real world’ rather than the online one, a UX designer’s job has a lot in common with an architect. They have to work out the best layout and structure for sites, and figure out how everything fits together to provide the best experience for the user (or homeowner).

The simpler the better

You might assume that with all the recent advancements in technology that websites would adopt more complex features when in reality it’s the other way around. Sure, the goal is to make things look visually appealing, but the ease of use is more important, and simple, clean designs tend to work better from a UX perspective.

Andrew Machin
Andrew Machin

With over 15 years’ experience in web design and digital marketing Andrew has helped many brands, both in the UK and US, create exceptional digital experiences, from websites to in-store retail experiences, such as John Lewis, Jet2, Virgin Holidays and Interflora.

Through the success of such projects Andrew has received accolades that include high-profile awards that span innovation, strategy, design and results such as the Dadi Grand Prix Award and the Digital Impact Award for Innovation.

This experience has led to Andrew judging digital design awards, been featured in .net magazine, lecturing at Leeds university and speak at seminars and conferences across the UK.

Follow Andrew @The_Machin

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