User experience, or UX, is a critical component in website design—maybe even the critical component. A website that provides a good user experience helps convert visitors into customers, and it helps keep your customers happy and satisfied; meanwhile, it’s also a big factor in SEO rankings.
But what are we talking about when we talk about user experience? Essentially, user experience deals with how visitors interact with your website. It encompasses a number of different ideas—among them information architecture, site layout and navigation, readability, and more.
It’s critical for those who visit your website to have a good experience, of course; your brand’s reputation is on the line, not to mention your search rankings. But how can Web designers ensure that they’re doing their due diligence as far as UX goes?
UX Design in Six Steps
There’s a six-step process for thinking about UX, and it’s a framework that you may find useful. Here’s a quick summary:
- Understand. To develop a solid user experience, you first need to put yourself in the user’s shoes—to develop real understanding and empathy. There are a few tools you might use here, such as user surveys, feedback forms, and interviews.
- Define. The next step is to take the information you’ve gathered and put it into a story form—defining what the optimal user experience must be like. This can often be articulated as a simple formula: “As a [type of user], I wish to [goal] so that I may [end goal].”
- Design. The next step is actually sketching out/wireframing an environment that will allow the user to meet his or her goals. Remember, the whole point here is to create a website that makes it as easy as possible for users to do what they want to do.
- Test. As with anything in digital marketing or Web design, testing is key. After you get a prototype of the website put together, spend some time exploring it and identifying any lingering obstacles or inefficiencies. Get some other people to test it and offer feedback.
- Implement.You can’t beta test your website forever; once you feel like you’ve gotten the kinks worked out, it’s time to make it go live, and then you’ll really see how it fares with the users in your target demographic.
- Analyze, track, refine. Even after your website is launched, however, it’s not truly done. There are always further improvements you can make. This is where it becomes invaluable to continue surveying users and also paying attention to key analytics—making refinements to your website as needed.
Key Takeaways About User Experience
To extract a few of the key lessons from this, we’d offer the following:
- User experience begins with truly understanding the user. You can’t design the perfect experience until you know who you are designing it for.
- Everything about your site, from the visuals to the navigation, should be goal-oriented. Each component either does or doesn’t help users meet their goals.
- There is always room to further iterate your website. You should always be making it a better and better user experience.
Get Started with UX Design
An additional step you could take is to get your website fully audited by the Driven2020 Web design team; we can tell you not only how well it’s faring from an SEO standpoint, but also what improvements could be made to the UX.
At the end of the day, the user experience is really the whole point of your website. We can ensure that yours is totally effective. Reach out to Driven2020 to start the audit.