What is user experience design?

DSM Digital School of Marketing - user experience design

In the modern world of saturated markets and an ocean of promotional content, brands are having to become competitive on every front. With so many individuals shopping online these days, websites have to be optimised to maximise the conversion potential of each visitor. The question is, what websites are the most effective?

Many industry leaders stress the need for favourable UX (user experiences) – both in person and online. Therefore, more and more website owners and product manufacturers are thoroughly testing user experience to perfect their offerings. What is UX, and does it have anything to do with UI (user interface)? Let’s find out:

User experience defined in marketing terms

Have you ever experienced clicking on a link and been taken to a website that you can’t make head or tail of? You can’t find the main menu items, there are spelling errors in the on-page text, and a strange song automatically starts to play once you scroll to the bottom (along with a pop-up ad that covers the entire screen). This would qualify as a bad user-experience website.

Why is this? Well, Internet users are in search of heightened convenience in their lives. They don’t want to struggle to find the information they need, and will quickly bounce from the above website – without taking any further action. Website owners don’t want bouncers – they want lingerers.

So, how do you get website visitors to hang around, browsing your website pages and blog articles? It involves plenty of research, lengthy brainstorming sessions, and eventually careful user experience website designing.

What’s UX design?

User experience web design is all about putting the website user first in every design and functional element when putting together a live site. What does the Internet user want to see when first landing on a website? What will draw their attention? Can they see the most important information clearly? Do they understand who the brand is, what they do, and how to procure their services/products – just from reading the home page?

These questions and more are asked when developers first sit down and plot out a website. Websites with user-centric design at their very centre enjoy, on average, lower bounce rates and longer session durations. This is because these websites have pre-empted what their visitors will engage with, and have catered to their needs and wants.

UX versus UI

User experience (UX) is a general term defined as the experiences users of real-world/digital products and services have when using them. This can apply to vehicles, lifestyle goods, food and websites. User interface (UI) is a strictly digital term, used to describe the physical interactions online users are engaged with on websites and apps. This can apply to on-screen buttons, links, image scrollers, interactive banners, contact forms, ease of navigation, etc.

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Assess the efficacy of a client’s user experience online as a professional with a Paid Advertising and Web Analytics course from DSM! Find more on our digital marketing courses page, and contact us directly for more information on any of our globally-recognised qualifications.

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