You love working on the web, the ability to get your message out there fast. However, you have a small team of marketers who not only do digital but also set up trade shows, manage PR, print adverts… you name it, they do it. Your company seniors try to keep up with you, but you have a feeling they do not get what it is you are doing in the digital space, and just how daunting it can be. Everybody just wants you “to make it work…”.
One of the core principals of success in the digital space is UX or user experience. Maybe you have heard about it? Maybe you have not. I guess it very much depends on how large a team you have, and whether you are dedicated to just the website, or you have a million and one other marketing based tasks in your job description. Finding time to understand approaches to digital is hard.
UX is a fascinating term that has been coined by the digital generation to effectively design digital things around people, rather than your business (although your business is made up of people too!). There are many definitions of the term and many memes online to ‘prove’ the argument about its value.
However, a little user testing and thinking about what your users need and want from you can go a long way. You see, delivering a website that does what your customer wants it to do can deliver real business value, and it is worth taking the time to consider.
A few UX tips to get you started
Spend some time thinking about your business and what you offer the user?
I know it’s strange for me to start this post by talking about the user and then my first tip is to think about your business. It’s straight forward, you sell something or offer something of value, but this can get lost in the daily grind. Taking a moment or two to step back and really think about what it is you offer your customer is invaluable. Why not write them down on a big piece of paper and pin it to the wall?
Who is your user?
Your customers could be lots of different types of people, but when was the last time you thought about them as people? People with hopes and aspirations, people who dream amazing dreams, people who just want to get the job done and go back to their families.
Your users come in all shapes and sizes, but chances are your product or service is there to fix a problem that they have in their life and you might already know them well. If you don’t, pay a visit to your sales department, I bet they can tell you some great stories about your customers. Open your mind and your heart and listen to what they have to say.
Why not write down what you have learned on a big piece of paper and put it up on a wall for everyone to see? Why not talk to everyone in the business about these people and collaboratively paint a picture of who they are and what they do. Here at Factor 3, we do this on behalf of our clients and create personas for each different audience type.
Get Google Analytics up and running correctly
As the BBC would say “other Analytics packages are available”, but as a Google Partner this is Factor 3’s go to choice for measuring web analytics. It’s one thing to install the ruddy thing on your website, but did you realise you can set up goals? Did you know you can set up a value for those goals? There is so much you can do with Google Analytics to get some invaluable quantitive data about what is going on with your website. DO IT, DO IT NOW. If you do not know how to do it, contact us now.
Some testing is better than none at all
Spend 10 minutes with me and I will usually start to outline how you should build UX and user testing into the heart of everything you do. I can show you what I believe is the perfect structure of Product Managers, Delivery Managers, User Researchers, User Designers, Coders etc etc.
If you are not in the pure ‘play’ digital space it can be difficult, if not impossible, to get buy-in to your crazy plans. Building in a process of testing and improvement on your website when it is just you and maybe a few others can seem like an impossible task.
There are plenty of little things you can do to start to test your website, whether it is quantitative analysis of Google Analytics to confirm a hypothesis, or guerrilla testing your navigation with customers at a trade show. Try to think of opportunities you could get to be in front of the customer, carry a list of questions that you have about your website, remember most people love talking and giving their opinion so settle in with a coffee and a notepad.
The point being, a little bit of insight can go a long way.