7 Things Data Can Reveal About 21st-Century User Experiences
With billions of websites and millions of mobile applications, video games, and other digital products on the market, consumers have no shortage of things to engage with on screens. Given that volume of options, if you’re in the business of producing digital content, odds are your content will never reach its audience and if it does, your audience will reject it.
That truth is harrowing but one that hopefully inspires you to craft products that know their audience, function well, and champion positive user experiences.
Exploring that last element, user experiences, many beginner and even intermediate designers don’t take a data-driven approach to how they craft consumer journeys which often leads to lackluster engagement.
In this post, we discuss what data has the potential to tell us about how users engage with products so you can see the value in letting numbers support your artistic vision!
1. Customer Portraits
When people talk about analytics aggregators like “Google Analytics”, the two most common things they’ll say they use the tool for is to understand traffic and audience demographics.
In crafting successful user experiences, the latter of those two elements is essential.
Understanding who your customers are and what their goals may be should be at the foundation of your design. Leveraging analytics tools helps designers better define those attributes.
2. What Designs Are Most Engaging
Success leaves clues. That’s an adage that we’ve long recommended user experience designers take note of to improve the efficacy of their designs.
Data allows designers to see the success of design schemes that have gone to market. In assessing that data, you can better understand which avenues are worth revisiting and which are best avoided.
Any design team that’s not using postmortem analytics to assess past projects and inform future ones is missing out on low-hanging fruit that can easily increase the profitability of upcoming ventures.
3. Points of Diminishing Returns
When a user explores a digital product you’ve created, at what point does their level of engagement drop off? What amount of content is the right amount of content to keep them vested in their activities?
Without leveraging data produced by analytics tools, heat map generators, and the like, those insights will be impossible to mine.
By using data to witness what encourages vs discourages interaction, you can simplify or enrich your design to create successful operating environments.
4. How People Read Content
It’s no secret that people in the western world read from left to right. Are you leveraging that data to make sure your most important content sits in the upper left-hand corner of your design blueprint?
What about content scanning? Have you accounted for the fact that users typically scan content on pages rather than reading it in full?
We suggest investing in a heat map tool to get a better grasp on how audiences consume designs to fully appreciate what we’re talking about (check this post out before using them as heat maps do require additional context).
By better understanding the consumption of your content, you can more fully define an informational hierarchy on your pages.
5. Technical Concerns
Users will not go through the trouble of reporting bugs to your team. After all, your customers aren’t on your payroll.
Leveraging analytics tools helps us find those bugs in our products through usage abnormalities.
Let’s say you use quantitative analytics and found that people were spending inordinate amounts of time on a particular page that has little value, it could be that people are getting stuck in that area of your product.
These usage abnormalities make it simple for technical teams to assess, identify, and redesign flaws so they can quickly be filled in.
6. Uncommon Uses
As you move through your user experience education and start leveraging analytics to gain perspective on your designs, one of the key things you’ll discover is that people tend not to use products the way you intended.
Remember, you won’t be there to explain your product to consumers when they jump in for the first time. Is the pathway you’ve laid out in your design obvious enough that users are likely to reach the end result you’d like them to?
By assessing data, you can stumble onto uncommon uses of your product. Taking those uses, you can make customer journeys simpler, or perhaps use uncommon cases to defined a new, preferred journey.
7. Load Time Falloffs
We’ve seen time and again people focus solely on art when designing user experiences. That approach forgets the streaming world we live in. Not everyone has a fast internet connection which means that if your product is going to be pulled from a web server, it has to load fast.
Design drafts can be tested for load times via a variety of data tools including free ones like the one on Google.
By getting feedback on your design’s speed, you can simplify things where possible. That way, you’ll ensure seamless experiences for your consumers.
Investing in Quality User Experiences Will Make or Break Your Product
With the volume of options people have when it comes to digital products, virtually no one will tolerate poor user experiences. Rather than trying to solely use your intuition to craft rewarding customer journeys, lean on data.
Believe us when we say that it will transform your ability to design successfully.
Do you want more insight into user experience data, interesting UX analytics, and more? If so, dive deeper into the content we have available on our blog.