The internet has forever changed the way brands interact with their customers, which often leads businesses to focus primarily on the website when it comes to user experience (UX). However, a new school of thought known as ‘holistic user experience’ (also called ‘holistic design’) is altering how brands engage their customers by taking a look at the big picture rather than just one aspect — like their website.
See why you should consider holistic user experience to improve customer engagement and make your brand stand out.
What is Holistic User Experience?
First, let’s break down ‘holistic user experience’ so you can have a better idea of what it means and why it matters. There are many definitions of ‘user experience’ but basically it describes how a user interacts with and experiences a particular brand, product, service, or system. It requires having a deep understanding of users, like what they need and value as well as their abilities and limitations. UX’s purpose is to improve the quality of the user’s interaction with and perceptions of your brand, product, or service.
Website is Important…But Not Everything
Holistic UX takes this a step further by providing meaningful and relevant experiences to users from every aspect. Customers have more options than ever before which is why engagement is crucial for keeping them. Not only should you strive for a positive website experience, but also with every digital and non-digital touchpoint like social media, email, customer support services, in-store, etc.
A great website can do wonders for your business, but it’s not the most important thing when it comes to creating meaningful engagement with customers. That’s because your brand interacts with customers in multiple ways. By pouring most of your attention and resources into the website, you could be miss out on finding out why customers leave and discovering solutions to retain them.
Creating a Holistic UX Strategy
Now that you understand why holistic user experience is essential for brands, here is some food for thought when creating a holistic UX strategy. These considerations will help get you closer to achieving meaningful, relevant engagement with customers.
Research and Ask Questions
You can’t create a holistic user experience if you don’t understand your users. Let go of your preconceived notions of what you think they want and value. Instead, learn as much as you can about your customers by researching and asking lots of questions. Not all of your customers are the same, even if you only offer one product or service because they have different goals and motivations. We recommend creating ‘buyer personas’ to ensure your experience appeals to and engages a wider range of customers rather than a narrow segment.
Explore the Customer Journey
The customer journey tells the story of your customers’ end-to-end experience with your brand across all touchpoints. It includes every place (online and offline) that they can come in contact with your brand before, during, or after the purchase. Customer journey mapping is an invaluable tool that can transform your marketing and elevate your customer’s experience with your brand.
List All Brand Touchpoints
It can be easy to overlook all of the places or ways that customers interact with your brand which is why listing every single touchpoint is crucial for a successful holistic UX strategy. Go to each department in your company and get their input on how to enhance the customer’s experience. Even departments that aren’t customer-facing can provide valuable feedback into improving internal processes that will contribute to a better user experience.
Consider Context and Scope
Your brand is part of a wide, interconnected world which means your holistic user experience doesn’t stand in isolation. There are external factors outside of your control that can negatively affect your customer’s experience. While you probably can’t stop or change those external factors, you can control your response to them. Consider the larger context and scope when developing your strategy so it’ll be easier to identify and implement workarounds or buffers so customers have a smoother experience.
Move Your Digital Marketing Beyond the Website
There are numerous benefits of holistic user experience such as differentiating your brand, attracting and retaining more customers, and making your company stronger. However, you first need to gain a deep understanding of your users and business to be able to provide memorable experiences throughout the customer journey. Regardless of your product or service, working with an agency is a great way to develop a holistic UX strategy that will position your brand as an industry disruptor.
Schedule a call with Mavericks Marketing to discuss holistic user experience opportunities for your brand!