UX 101

Ask 10 digital designers what user experience (UX) means and you will hear as many different answers. For many, that is the trouble with the whole concept of user experience (and the effort put into making it better). It can encompass pretty much everything; every user interaction; every buying and browsing experience; and every moment in the user's journey.

The benefits of an excellent user experience are well documented, of course, revolving primarily around generating more revenue (as a result of more visitors and additional conversions) at less expense, but how do you get started? What is it that Web professionals should give their attention to? Let's explore the practical side of UX and address some simple but important steps to ensure your digital property exceeds the expectation of its users. And remember; only when enterprises adhere to the idea that the customer comes first can a truly optimized digital experience become possible.


Web professionals likely hear a great deal about speed (and they should because it has been shown time and again to relate directly to the volume of conversions and the lifetime value of customers), but there is not one specific loading time webmasters need to achieve - they just need to beat the average. That means being faster and lighter weight than the competition.

There are several tools to help benchmark performance in this regard, so make it a point to regularly test how fast sites are compared to others.

IsMySiteFastEnough.com from application performance monitoring service Atatus, for example, provides a very useful daily report comparing load time, render time, requests, errors and page size against up to two other websites. 

+ Frameworks in Focus

JavaScript has long been top of mind with the Web design and development community, but interest in frameworks is exploding. Discover some of the best at wsm.co/bestjavas


Believe it or not, sometimes customers really don't want to speak with a company; they don't want to call them if they don't have to and they'd rather not engage in a chat either. That being said, digital enterprises should still offer that functionality.

Customers want to know support representatives are available and businesses care enough and are confident enough to place their phone number in a prominent location, so integrate a user-initiated chat feature, and maybe even develop a self-service FAQ or ticketing system. By prioritizing support in the user experience, brands empower users and an empowered user is a satisfied user.

Discover 10 support tools for today's savviest and most successful digital enterprises at wsm.co/servesite.


It is not enough to meet the expectations of users. Internet professionals including ecommerce merchants, for example, must do more than just ship the right products and ensure it is delivered at the right time.

They need to surprise and delight with unique and clever packaging to go beyond the norm - and the results of doing provide the needed evidence.

A 2015 survey from Dotcom Distribution, in fact, revealed that 40 percent of consumers indicated gift-like packaging makes them more likely to recommend the product to friends and 29 percent indicated they are more likely to purchase from a brand again if the product comes in a branded or gift-like box.

Web workers also need to make their communication personalized - and we're not talking about just including a person's name in the subject line of an email. Knowing what users bought (or viewed) and delivering something similar or supplementary provides not only a pleasing experience for the user but one that, on average, is easier to monetize for the business. As with any UX effort, personalization can be challenging.

Review some basic guidelines for not jeopardizing the user experience at wsm.co/uxfails.