User Experience - the Key Driver of Businesses Today
October 15, 2019

Akshaya Choudhary
Cigniti Technologies

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In an era of intense competition in the digital domain, businesses are catering to the myriad demands of customers by launching newer and qualitatively superior products in double quick time. This has created a glut of products in the market where most of them remain on the sidelines and do not pass muster on the crucible of customer satisfaction.

Previously, the success of a company used to be dependent on the delivery of quality products or services in the market. Today, thanks to the changing habits and preferences of customers, businesses have to rely on product differentiation based on User Experience (UX), which is frictionless, seamless, and aligns with the users' needs and expectations.

According to a study by Forrester Research, an enhanced UX design can increase the conversion rate by 400%. If UX has become the ultimate arbiter in determining the success or failure of a product or service, let us first understand what UX is all about.

What is User Experience (UX)?

User Experience (UX) is the satisfying experience that users get while using a product or service based on parameters such as utility, usability, accessibility, credibility, desirability, and cost-effectiveness.

UX design refers to the designing of products (physical or digital) or services by focusing on their quality and usability. The products should enhance the experience that users undergo while interacting with them.

Today, in the lean/Agile driven ecosystem, UX has moved from offering customer satisfaction to customer delight. The latter is about experiencing the unexpected. A Forester study has observed that businesses designing products with UX in mind get better customer acquisition and retention, market share, and reduced support cost. The best example could be cited as that of Amazon where the initial effort was aimed more towards bettering the User Experience rather than launching an all-out advertising blitz.

Remember, aesthetics and innovation alone cannot make a product successful. It is ultimately the user-friendliness that leads to satisfaction and success. Hence, to ensure a better UX, businesses should invest in conducting rigorous user experience testing. According to this, the beta version of a product is given to a small set of target users to identify the usability defects. UX user experience testing focuses on the ease of using a product as well as understanding and handling its features and functionalities.

Advantages of Conducting User Experience Testing

Usability testing is highly recommended for ensuring customer satisfaction, acquisition, retention, and a better ROI. UX must be obtained through numbers and decisions based on data and facts. User testing involves conducting a usability assessment of the product. This brings forth the pain points users might face while using the product or service.

■ Identifies usability issues before a product is delivered to the end-users.

■ Enhances end-user satisfaction even leading to delight.

■ Makes the application robust, dynamic, secure, effective, and efficient.

■ Helps to garner actual feedback from your target customers instead of depending on some random comments or opinions from people.

4 Elements of UX Validated by User Testing Services

The four elements of UX that define the scope and objectives of user experience are:

Usability: This is all about ensuring users complete the intended tasks seamlessly while using the product or service. For example, seamless usability of an eCommerce app would mean users' ability to log in, view the products and prices, make payment, and check out of the app without encountering any issue.

Value addition: Usability is a subset of user experience and does not guarantee the success of a product in the marketplace. For example, smartphones are replacing the feature phones even when the latter are considered to be more user-friendly. The reason being smartphones add value to the users by allowing them to browse the internet or use various apps. Thus, a product shall add value to the user experience when its features are aligned to the needs of the users.

Adaptability: This refers to the users ability to download, install, and use a product. To ensure the same, developers (and UX testing professionals) incorporate design elements to let users discover the features of a product organically. Thus, even if a product is easy-to-use and offers a great value to the users, should it be difficult to access and install, users are going to leave it altogether.

Desirability: This refers to the emotional appeal a product generates among the users. A large part of it depends on the product's visual design and brand equity. For example, many electronic products featuring a number of brands, even though offer great value addition and adaptability, are not desired by the end-users vis-a-vis some of the successful brands.

Conclusion

Staying competitive in today's business environment is underpinned on many factors. However, user experience combining elements like usability, value, adaptability, and desirability has become critical in achieving success for any product or service. This is where UX user experience testing can facilitate the identification (and elimination) of glitches users face while using the app. It can go a long way in ensuring the success of a product or service in the market place.

Akshaya Choudhary is Content Marketer at Cigniti Technologies, an Independent Software Testing company
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