Glossary Index

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Glossary Index

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Glossary Index

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Glossary term

User Experience (UX)

Quick definition

User experience is the experience a person has while using a digital platform, like a website or an app.

Key takeaways

 

●     User experience is a specific point in the overall customer experience where users interact with your company’s digital interfaces, like websites or apps.

●     The best way to optimize your user experience is to observe what your customers like and dislike about your platform interfaces. Make usability changes accordingly.

●     User experiences will continue to be crucial parts of the customer journey in the coming years with more emphasis on voice, augmented reality, and virtual reality experiences.


Ben Jordan is a senior user experience designer with 15+ years of design and development experience. He has designed both user interfaces and websites and worked with marketing managers to build seamless user experiences. At Adobe, Ben and his team create user experiences that delight and deliver results.

Q: What is user experience?

A: The user experience refers specifically to the experience someone has while interacting with your company’s interfaces, like websites, apps, online chats, or ecommerce solutions.

While the terms customer experience and user experience are similar, they are very different things. Unlike user experience, customer experience includes every element of a customer’s interactions with your brand. This could include talking with salespeople, walking into a brick-and-mortar store, and calling customer service. Both terms are essential aspects of customer journey management.

Q: What is user experience important?

A: A bad user experience leaves users frustrated and unhappy — feelings you don’t want associated with your business. If your user experience is seamless and simple, users will want to use your interface again. A great user experience can turn into increased return on investment (ROI) as you encourage customer loyalty, close sales, and decrease bounce rates.

Q: How do you create a good user experience?

A: The basic element of good UX is customers being able to find what they’re looking for. Whether it’s navigating to an online store, finding out how to contact the sales department or customer service, or searching for a company’s portfolio, users need to easily navigate to their destinations.

Besides being easy to use, your platform needs to actually work. If a user wants to buy inventory, request a demo, troubleshoot with customer service, or peruse your portfolio, there should be no technical difficulties. Glitches and connection timeouts are terrible for the user experience.

With these two most basic thresholds met, the final two levels of usability focus less on mechanics and more on emotions. First, users need the information you are delivering to be useful. This reinforces that their interactions so far have been worth their time. Finally, your interface should be visually and emotionally appealing. Eye-catching visuals alongside personalized elements can contribute to positive user experiences that last.

Q: Who is responsible for user experience in a business?

A: Generally, user experience designers take the lead in most organizations. However, the responsibility for creating prime user experiences extends across many roles and teams. A UX designer works with art directors, visual designers, web developers, engineers, and even copywriters. One of the biggest tasks for UX designers is collaborating with all of these different experts. UX designers also take products to end users and collect feedback to make experiences better.

Q: How do you analyze and measure user experience?

A: There are two ways to measure user experience: quantitative analysis and qualitative analysis.

Quantitative analysis involves collecting numerical data on desired user outcomes and behaviors. This includes closed sales, conversion rates, page clicks, and bounce rates. Quantitative analysis can give you a baseline reference point for comparison as you make qualitative changes to your experience.

Qualitative analysis involves collecting anecdotal data, such as through usability testing — getting a product in front of real end users and observing their experiences. Qualitative analysis includes user research like A/B testing, collecting customer feedback, noting where users struggle, what functions frustrate them, and what aspects of your product they enjoy. User testing is the best way to measure your user experience because it is led by the very end users you are trying to attract and keep happy.

Q: What tools do you need to create a good user experience?

A: An advantage of user experience design is that it takes very few tools to get started. The key is to capture your initial thoughts and ideas, which you can do just using pencil and paper. When you’re ready to start the design process of building actual pages for digital experiences like websites and apps, use a UX design tool like Adobe XD for creating a wireframe, animating, and prototyping.

Q: How has user experience evolved over time?

A: Before the digital age, user experience wasn’t a major focus. But in an increasingly digital world, businesses soon realized that user experience could make the difference between closing a sale or not. Businesses began to invest in UX research to figure out how to make every user interaction better. Over the years, our technology has become better, and we’ve developed tools that make visual design, development, and analysis much easier.

Q: How will user experience change in the future?

A: Over the next decade, you’ll see more UX design centered around voice technology. Voice UX will become a strong area of consideration in UX design — both for ease of use and accessibility. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) experiences will also become more mainstream and introduce new forms of innovation and consideration as part of a holistic user experience strategy.

Adobe can help

Put this knowledge into action with Adobe Experience Cloud.