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Why user experience matters in online advertising

User Experience really does what it says on the tin. Like Ronseal. Stating the obvious, it’s how people use and perceive your product or business.

Written by

Robert Hufton

Director & UX Consultant

User Experience really does what it says on the tin. Like Ronseal. Stating the obvious, it’s how people use and perceive your product or business. This experience could be of your website, with your customer service, with their buying experience of something, of an application form, booking a holiday and so on.

Plot out a user journey to identify weak points

The all important customer (or user) journey

All online advertising starts with a journey. One of the main areas of User Experience we focus on is the customer journey. This describes the steps that your user's take while they interact with your company. If you don’t understand these customer journey's and design appropriately, the users of your website or app will lose interest.

Presenting a user with something unexpected can result in a poor experience.

“A customer journey needs to be enjoyable as well as functional.”

Someone may have seen an advert on the TV, on Google or on a social media post. They will take action by clicking, calling or sharing. If they don't take action and you don’t understand why, a UX team will crunch the data to find the answers.

Plan out the customer journey so that your users achieve their goals. Then monitor feedback, and report on effectiveness.

Creating customer journey maps

By mapping out the touch-points of a user journey you can quickly identify where areas are weak and could cause a problem for the user. Journey mapping can be done on spreadsheets but I prefer them when they are more visual. It's worth hiring. designer and create something neat, tools like Adioma are a useful tool.

Key areas of online advertising

All areas of online marketing can monitor the performance of a campaign.

Measurable metrics can show the effectiveness (or failure) of a campaign. These could be through Pay Per Click, which measures Conversion Rate goals; SEO monitors visitor volumes, time on page, geographic location, bounce rate, keywords searches and more; or for social media, it’d be through the amount of shares, likes, views, tags etc.

How User Experience perfectly compliments online marketing

Analyses is key to the whole process

  • How much revenue is your marketing campaign generating?
  • What are your KPIs and how do you measure them?
  • How do we align your marketing budget to your best KPIs?
  • Who are your targeted users and audience?
  • What goals do you need them to achieve?
  • Why did/didn’t they take action?
  • What fields on a form did they complete (or not)?

These are all the tools a UX designer should have in the box. Some say a UX designer should be a psychologist, a product designer, a head of sales, a business analyst and a digital device expert. I believe a UX designer should be able to:

  • Research target audiences by research and stakeholder meetings
  • Learn a business's strategies and KPIs
  • Analyse competitors to understand market position
  • Devise user buying personas and the journey they should take
  • Design a layout to help your users to take a successful journey
  • Place measuring tools to report on success metrics
  • Perform follow up tasks for user retention
  • Learn from all previous research and re-optimise for continuous improvement

Here at Ground, these questions are always applied to every campaign we take on and manage. Without it an online marketing manager is working blind and will, in all likelihood fail.

Key steps for better online marketing with UX

  1. We design online marketing campaigns tailored for the users you need to market to.
  2. We research and ascertain the best type of user or buyer for the thing you are offering
  3. We create a customer journey to map out the path of your targeted users
  4. We identify risks of these users losing interest or not finding what they need
  5. We design layouts to ensure these journey's contain the features your users need
  6. We apply tracking to show how these goals are measured
  7. We monitor all keywords and how these keywords align with the customer journey
  8. We create great landing pages to match keywords to customer journeys
  9. We use tools such as optimizely and instapage to test new layouts

The cycle process of a customer journey

Does your sales department know how many people came to your website? Do they understand enough about the customer to know what they are interested in?

A great user journey never ends once the user has taken action. A great online advertising campaign always starts with research and an attractive proposition.

A great user experience should be able to design a cycle process to nurture customers by understanding more about them. Who didn't take immediate action? Who decided they didn't want to use you after they got in touch? Did they buy once and that was the last time you heard from them?

Any leads from users generated by an online marketing campaign should be stored in a suitable Customer Relationship Management tool such as Pipedrive or salesforce (if you can afford it). This CRM should be tailored to follow up on contacts in the database.

Continuous improvement

Once a website or marketing plan is live, most UX designers don’t stop there.

By conducting post-launch analysis and monitoring feedback a UX team can identify what worked and what didn’t. Then make informed decisions into continuous improvement. A UX designer can then optimise the project continuously letting businesses flourish from continuous improvement.

Find out more about our UX agency here.

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