We must admit, the term UX (user experience) gets thrown around a lot in the marketing world.
As COVID-19 continues to loom over us, there has been a tremendous shift to the online space in an attempt to maintain business as usual. For some companies, this means doing business better with digital and for others, this is a completely foreign world. No matter where you are on your journey, great website UX is critical to effectively serving your customers’ needs and is a fundamental contributor to the success of your business.
To enable you to quickly pivot and capitalise on current circumstances, you ought to make the most of what UX has to offer. In this article, we share four tips on what you can do to improve your customers’ online experience to help you come out on top post-COVID-19. Let’s get started!
Create long-form blog posts
A long-form what? A long-form blog post is exactly what the name might suggest—a blog that is around 1,200 words in length. This concept of having ‘meatier’ content articles came about when people started to question if there really was any value in the traditional 500-word articles, and by people, we mean Google. Despite what Google says, many readers crave meatier articles – and publishers are delivering.
Have you ever heard of the digital business news platform called ‘Quartz’? Quartz refuses to publish articles in the typically news-friendly 500-800 word range because Kevin Delaney, Quartz’s Editor-in-Chief, believes that too many sites adhere religiously to this format. Delaney even developed a model (known as the Quartz Curve) based on article length that forms the basis of the publication’s approach to content.
The Quartz Curve Model—long-form articles are thought to have better cut through
So how do you go about creating long-form blog content that still retains engagement? The success of any piece of long-form blog lies in how well you can turn a traditionally boring document such as a press release into an interactive storytelling piece. For more information on what types of blogs your business should be writing, check this out!
Start heat mapping
Website heat maps visualise the most popular (hot) and unpopular (cold) elements of a webpage using colours on a scale from red to blue.
By aggregating user behaviour, heat maps facilitate data analysis and give an at-a-glance understanding of how people interact with a specific website page—what they click on, scroll through, or ignore—which helps identify trends and optimise for further engagement.
One of our favourite platforms to use at Salted Stone for heat mapping is Hotjar. The heat map below shows you just how heat mapping works on a website.
A scroll map (left) and a move map (right) on the hotjar.com homepage
Apart from looking cool, how do heat maps really help you out? With so many different types of heat maps around, its important you do your research on which one best suits the needs you are trying to fulfil. Once you have your chosen platform and a decent sample size of data, you can start to discover insights about your user experience which may surprise you. Heat maps can unearth some interesting observations like the fact people spend more time looking at the left side of a webpage, or that users prefer to read content in an F-shaped pattern. Who knew?
Review and analyse your data
When decisions about your UX are made out of thin air, then your marketing efforts will also likely turn into thin air. Educated decisions are grounded in data but since data can come from so many different sources it’s hard to know where to start.
Beyond understanding your industry and defining criteria for your market, you want to amass data that will uncover who is buying your products and services. More importantly, you want to unearth what motivates their decision making. This means quantifying your buyer personas using—you guessed it—data!
Where and how do we gather this data, you ask? This depends on how your business is already set up and which platforms can add value to those you currently use.
Platforms all business should already be using include things like Google Analytics and Facebook Business Manager. Other useful platforms that can take your data analysis to the next level include:
- Data Box: a comprehensive visual tool that brings in data from a variety of sources. The benefit of Data Box is that it’s 100% customisable!
- Hotjar: as mentioned before, Hotjar is a visual tool that helps you gauge where and how users navigate throughout your website so you can improve its UX.
- HubSpot: Hubspot offers you everything you need to organise, track and build better relationships with leads and customers. Its data analytics tools let you track users throughout their entire buyer journey which can make for some pretty interesting data.
If you want to learn how you can develop a data-backed go-to-market strategy check out our article here.
Conduct a competitor analysis
You would think analysing your competitors would be something all brands have done, however, you would be surprised as to how often this is left out of a marketing strategy.
In relation to your website UX strategy, understanding what your competitors do and don’t offer on their websites is important to know. Why is it so important? It ensures that as a company you don’t get left behind. Competitor analysis can be done simply with the help of a chart format for easy visualisation and comparison.
A competitor comparison chart makes finding differentiation opportunities easy.
Representing your comparison data through tables can aid in drawing findings and conclusions in an easy to digest visual format. Typically a basic competitor analysis reveals gaps in your business that you may not have realised previously.
We hope you enjoyed finding out how to better your UX in the face of COVID-19. No matter where you are on your UX journey or how you are coping with these unusual times, we wish you the best of luck in improving your website!
Need help from the experts on how you can better your business and improve your UX strategy? Book in for a Springboard session to fast track your solutions!