If you’ve ever been at the center of a “Mac vs. PC” debate, you know that the crux of the argument for most people is which one is easier to use. For the computer literate, there are of course a lot of other creative design aspects of both systems that make them different from each other, but what most people are responding to is the User Experience design, or UX design.
UX design is actually an entire subdivision of retail design services, and is the center of a lot of marketing strategy planning. The name sounds fancy, but really it’s just what it seems like: making the customer’s comfort and ease your priority when making and selling a product. One great example of UX design can be found in most Apple storefronts today. Apple knows that their products are state–of–the–art and usually unfamiliar to users, and so they have several prototypes out on display that can be tested in–store and then inquired about on the spot. Below are a few tips about how to brand a company in a way that prioritizes UX design:
1. Avoid jargon.
We have all had that moment online or at the store where we read the “specs” for a product and they might as well be in ancient Sumerian. Then we call the help line or get one of the name tag bedazzled sales associates to come on over, and they too start talking about “APR” and “LANS more consistent with HDMI.” A lot of people really believe that the housing bubble popped back in 2008 because banks confused homeowners with jargon! So don’t become part of the problem. One great way to build your customer loyalty and increase profits is to provide a product that that customer understands, and a safe mental space in which to ask questions. Mental space however is only half the battle…
2. Be accessible.
A huge principle of UX design is making sure you’re accessible. Accessibility for your business begins with your choice of commercial real estate, so make sure when you’re searching for a location you pick some place that your target demographic can easily reach. This is not always intuitive; our best advice is make sure you’re near at least one option of public transportation for example, some thing we don’t normally think about in this car–centric society. But accessibility also extends beyond the physical nowadays…
3. Get online.
It used to be people hated “dealing with robots,” and the internet was a new, distrusted medium of buying and selling that often reacted slowly and didn’t load. (The dial–up noises ring a bell for anyone?) Now however the majority of people take care of their most sensitive business online, even banking business, and 80% of Americans own phones that have speedy access to the internet. So if you take nothing away from this article except “build an app,” we will consider our UX design crash course a success.
Please comment below with any further advice. We also like to hear UX nightmares, both as cautionary tales and because the stories just keep getting better and better.