Step 1: Insert Coin
Step 2: Avoid Klingons
One of Atari’s early Star Trek video games from the 1970s had two simple steps. Their goal (and understanding of user experience) was that, in order to be successful, you needed to be able to have as few steps as possible for users to follow. In the time of arcade games, the consumers weren’t as savvy as they are today. This simple user experience was noticed by Steve Jobs when he worked there and later became an inspiration of his to revolutionize 6 different fields of technology, including computer user experience.
While today’s consumers are savvy, their brains are still wired the same way they have been for thousands of years. A lot of the best practices in user experience — simple steps and clean, elegant interfaces — go hand-in-hand with leading principles in neurobiology. A critical part of how your brand is perceived online is the experience in how easily a consumer can find, access, review, and buy from you.
An ideal customer journey is through a user-friendly website that contains seamless navigation, a clean-cut purchasing journey, easy-to-consume content, and works on whatever device they put it on. Just like the Atari principle, the fewer steps the user has to take, the better!
Mobile Devices and Other Technology
The rise of smartphones and mobile technology usage has changed the way people view, buy, and interact online. With mobile now accounting for 65% of digital media time, the desktop is becoming the secondary touchpoint for an increasing number of digital users.
Mobile is so ingrained into the psyche of today’s user that mobile users are five times more likely to abandon their session if a website isn’t correctly optimized for their phone — and if you’re running a business, this could mean a major loss in conversions, or even damaging to your brand’s reputation.
That said, what’s more alarming is that 52% of users said a bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company, and with 80% of local searches converting on mobile devices (if they are designed properly), UX is a principle that simply should not be ignored.
User experience is more than just usability
Simplicity’s importance cannot be overstated. While a lot of marketers shrug off user experience as an industry buzzword, that couldn’t be further from the case. Whether it’s choosing a simple font or using a simple guarantee, strive for simplicity in user experience.
User experience isn’t just a design concept. It’s an entire process of your users’ experience with your brand. Confusion, clutter and disorganization represent your brand in, well, a confusing, cluttered, and disorganized way! As a whole, user experience determines how a brand speaks to its customers and delivers the message the brand is trying to convey.
Where UX fits into the five tiers of content marketing
A content-based strategy that yields incredible results is always best planned from the ground up. There are three levels to a successful content marketing model:
- SEO: Essential. If your site isn’t optimized for search engines, your target customers will never find you in the first place! Search engines are also getting more intelligent and feed off of principles of user experience to rank articles.
- Neural experience: Your customers need to have a journey and experience that engage with their brain. According to a study by Adobe, given 15 minutes to consume content, two-thirds of people would rather read something beautifully designed than something plain. That’s just one piece of the puzzle!
- Content: You need to create content and media that meet the needs of your target audience. This content should trigger their unique brain patterns and hyper-focus on a target market. Creating and distributing this content is important in getting your message heard.