A strategy is an initial step that needs to be developed to begin a new business. The same holds for launching a new product, process, or service. It is the strategy that will determine the flow and sequence of decisions and execution.
A digital product for a business or an NGO or an educational institution must follow a similar path. The formulation of a great user experience strategy. This will lead to designs and concepts that have excellent features and usability. The design will also get popular among visitors over some time.
The UX strategy is a process that must begin before the design or development of any digital product. This strategy is the vision of a key that needs to be validated with actual potential customers. This helps to prove that the product is desired and accepted in the market.
The UX design needs to encompass all key details like the visual design and the content message. It should outline the ease at which any user can complete a task. In other words, the UX strategy is the ‘big idea’ or the big picture.’ It is the macro plan to achieve business outcomes under evolving market conditions.
UX design strategy deals with the usability of the product, the content, and how the user interacts. The UX strategy deals with the big picture. It sets the flow and direction. It assists in meeting business goals. The UX strategy must be in sync with popular user experience trends.
The Initial Step – Research
Research is the first step in building a sound UX strategy. One needs to connect with multiple target profiles. This enables us to gather a more complete understanding of what customers who come to the website or app may want or expect.
All stakeholders and users should be involved or consulted by UX Strategist in this step.
Decision-makers in charge of the business need to contribute to the discussion. They can advise what they would like on the new site or app. If the existing site does not work, what issues had to be taken care of. What metrics might be tracked?
Other team members from non-related functions can be approached. They can provide inputs on how they plan to use the site. Their views on important features or aspects can be considered.
A set of prospective users must also part of the discussion. A few questions can be discussed what they would expect in the new design. These users could be judged on how they navigate the existing website if available.
An important research component is reviewing competition. How does the business create experiences that surpass them? The new design must be compelling enough to attract users through design, features, and content.
Research must ensure that the goals outlined for the project will be achieved. The metrics for success should be considered.
Start the Design
Once research has played a part, the design stage kicks in. The teams need to engage in brainstorm and discussion till the short-listed set of prototypes and designs are ready for feedback.
The user experience path must be mapped through the design. What should each user do? How should the user behave? These must be considered while they engage with the new website? Metrics can be set to measure such outcomes.
This process can be quite comprehensive with multiple versions being developed. So, it could take a while before the first approved design is set for testing.
Testing the UX
The test of mettle for any UX and design team is usability testing and a beta launch. Many sentiments come into play. How do users react to the design? Will the users behave and navigate as expected? Will there be adequate visitors? Failure and success are both possible.
The testing phase tends to crop up many unexpected findings. That is why a beta launch is necessary. When users are aware that a site is in a beta phase, their expectations are more manageable. Knowing the website is in a test phase can temper the expectations of users.
The beta version, however, cannot be kept in beta for long durations. A timeline can be planned for collecting feedback. Data can be collated using A/B tests, the user log, and any other analytics.
Evaluation of the Test Results
All the data and statistics collected during the testing phase need to be examined. A pattern of success must be looked at. What are the elements or components of the design that stand out and work? Users tend to stay for longer durations on these pages. They tend to follow the logical path and progress the user journey as expected.
Learning from these pages can be applied to pages that aren’t working? One can apply such insights universally across the design.
In terms of content, there could be cases that users ignore. One can try and identify content that isn’t working for users and make adjustments accordingly.
Staying Abreast and Evolving
While a lot of satisfied users connect with the design, the job is not over. No matter how good the UX, evolution must always happen. Technology will advance and design trends keep evolving. The business must constantly monitor all the elements of the design and keep evolving it.
This might be a bit painstaking. But there are advantages. The users will keep coming and continue to engage with the design. The design and UX will stay relevant because of the changes and inputs that keep it current.
A sound UX Techniques & UX strategy can help design an outstanding digital product. One can be sure that users will always stay engaged. That is what good UX is all about. Making users interact and enjoy the experience. No business operates without a plan. The same logic applies while designing digital products too.