5 easy ways to improve your UX
Ah this is a can of worms, I tell ya! Customer experience (CX), user experience (UX) and all the things in between are getting some good publicity on all fronts lately.
Given I work in an industry that’s all ‘bout dat good experience, I thought it was high time I shared 5 things you can do right now to improve the UX for your customer.
(And I did promise it in my last blog post — and that was so long ago… apologies!)
Develop a brand voice.
This is a seriously undervalued and underrated tool for any business owner (or, you know, any marketing, communications and customer care team too). But creating a tone of voice for your brand is also one of the most important things you can do for your business. Not only does it improve your website and give your words some personality, but it also filters through into all of your marketing initiatives. And as any professional copywriter would say — your website copy is your salesperson when you can’t be there (or maybe I just say that? Maybe I heard it somewhere and adapted it for myself? Whatevs).
There’s so much that goes into developing your brand voice — but then again, you get so much out of it. That’s why it’s a non-negotiable when I take on any website or ongoing content project for a client.
To get you started, do some digging and ask yourself a few questions, like these:
- What’s the top 3 words you’d use (or even better, what ones your customers would use) to describe your business?
- How would you brand speak to a customer if it were a human? (How would it explain something to a friend, how would it deliver bad news?)
Now now, hear me out. This isn’t just a fad that your old CEO from 5 years ago preached without any substance. What I’m talking about it doing your darn research. Cultivate the information that interests you, the juicy stuff that you would ask someone as you’re getting to know them. Write a story about your ideal customers and have some fun with it! Disclaimer: this is actually my favourite thing to do in a branding project! The personas I create often have these wild back stories and some even have dark pasts. (Hey, I’m a writer — it’s what I live for.)
Map your user’s journey.
This sounds like a bit of wanky jargon but I promise you, it’s crucial! With any communication you send out into the world, you need to know you’re speaking to the right person and at the right time. How aware are they about your product or service? Do they need a bit of education about what you do and why you’re amazing? Or maybe they’re ready to hit ‘buy now’ (if that’s the case — go you)!
Try doing this in a linear graph to start with — it could even be roughly sketched on a piece of paper, I do this all the time when I’m starting a project because it helps me think about the end user / customer a bit more.
Once that’s done, use the information you’ve collected in your brand voice exercise and put it against your user journey. Note how you want your customer to feel and when, and the appropriate way of communicating to them at each touchpoint.
Call to action.
Yes, this old chestnut. It’s amazes me how many times I come across sites that don’t have ONE CALL TO ACTION at the bottom of each page. Or how many newsletters I see (some from professional copywriters, I might add) that have numerous call to actions all over the place. To that I say — nay! One is enough. One is more than enough. One will get you the conversion you need per communication piece.
It’s easy to include one, too — have a button or a link to take the next step on each page of your website and on every email you send. Forgo the boring ‘click here’ or ‘next step’ for something more catching like ‘get started’ or ‘OK, got it’.
How do you know all of your hard work is, um, working… if you don’t test it? I’ve worked on short and sharp UX copy within an app where we tested almost everything — from a small word here, to a heading there, through to a padlock image and even the display of icons that promoted social proof.
This could be done through A/B testing platforms / sites or by simply noting your cash flow or analytics from the last 3 months of the control copy versus your new UX optimised copy.
Bonus tip — work with a great designer who ‘gets’ user experience. Not just one who makes pretty pictures and logos. I’m lucky I’ve worked with a couple of awesome ones (who also happen to do pretty badass logos).
Does that sound overwhelming? I guess it could if you weren’t really into the writing and researching and storytelling thing.
That’s ok though — for some of us weirdos, it looks like a bunch of good times. And that’s why we’re here.
That’s why I’m here.