Successful software delivers more than functionality and useful features. To appeal to users and captivate an audience, implementing UX (user experience) design is imperative. Knowing how to apply principles of UX design to your software can ultimately mean the difference between falling short of expectations and becoming wildly successful in any marketplace.
The Importance of Great Customer Experience
Providing a great customer experience is key to successful software. Consider tech companies such as Google, Apple, and Instagram and how they have a visual appeal that instantly attracts users to using the software. A great customer experience results not only from delivering high-quality content and services, but also by appealing to an easy user journey. Individuals using your software should enjoy the process without constant lagging, 404 “page not found” errors, or inconsistency in page layout when trying to work your software or app. The entire design should remain consistent with your company’s branding and logo.
Loading times are crucial when developing a software app while also considering UX design. Information is available instantly today, which is why it is necessary to ensure your software does not lag or take longer than traditional apps and programs on the market. Optimize images without reducing the quality of photos and graphics you use in your software’s design. Avoid overusing imagery when it is not necessary. Make information readily available in the least obtrusive ways.
Creating successful software is much like developing and launching a new website. Simplistic navigation encourages engagement without confusing users. It doesn’t matter whether they are tech-savvy or they are new to the internet altogether. Use navigation bars that are easily accessible on mobile and desktop versions, depending on the platforms you intend to launch your software on. Keep your navigation labels as simple as possible to avoid confusing users, while also promptly pointing them in the proper direction.
Implement Cohesive Iconography and Design
Streamline your software’s iconography and design to keep the attention of your users while building a professional reputation for your business and brand. Use professional iconography that is relevant to your business and that meshes well with the current color scheme you are using for your program’s logo. Another way to really legitimize your company is to include high-quality videos with plenty of content. You can put these in your about page, homepage, or in other social media sites to help promote the use of your software. Just make sure they are integrated with a keen eye, as you don’t want it to be obtrusive.
When sharing promotions, new content, or new product releases, avoid clickbait titles that keep users from exploring your software further. Clickbait titles such as “click here” or “find out more” are vague and discourage users from learning more about your software. Instead, use specific titles and share what users are receiving when clicking on links to maintain their interest in your software and the brand you represent.
Steer Clear of Double Scrolling
Software should be simplistic and held to the same modern standards as traditional websites. Avoid “double scrolling” abilities in your software to present your release with a professional appearance. Double scrolling is a term used when it is possible to scroll both horizontally and vertically on a website or within an app. While double scrolling has its usage on traditional sites, it is incredibly inconvenient for those who are using their mobile phones and want to find information as quickly as possible. Additionally, double scrolling also appears less professional and unfinished, which may deter prospective customers.
Choose Mobile-Friendly Fonts
Only use mobile-friendly fonts when developing software and steer clear of funky and unique fonts that are not legible on all devices. Use free toolkits such as Google Fonts for web and mobile-friendly fonts that are universally accepted on any type of device.
Always share informative error messages with your users when they are accessing your software. Avoid vague error messages and instead, showcase a report that has been sent to your development team with additional tips on how to fix the error from the user’s end. Include a link to contact your team to keep users who have your software installed in the loop.
Testing Before Launch
Always test your software before going live, using and interacting with prototypes before the developing team ever writes any code. Once you have working software, try to receive feedback from employees, partners, or even family and friends. Testing with focus groups is a way to gain valuable feedback from your target audience and demographics before releasing your software to the public.
Taking the right steps to ensure proper UX design is essential while building and launching new software of any kind. When developing software, applying these principles will improve customer experience on your website while boosting the overall satisfaction users have with your latest release.
Users are very data-oriented these days and demand access to the data your application stores on their behalf. This data can be used to provide benchmarking information so they can improve their processes or historical data they can use to identify trends and plan for future activities. The data can also be very useful as part of an integration with the other tools they use.
In all cases, building a robust set of dashboard and reporting tools can be costly. In many cases, it makes sense to partner with an established BI solution that offers not just out of the box technology but also the support to help you integrate it into your software quickly.