Understanding The Affinity Between Good User Experience And Customer Loyalty

UX Design | 24th March 2017

Customer loyalty is the decision to choose a particular product or service over the alternatives available, which can be influenced by factors including overall satisfaction with the product/service experience, its effectiveness, familiarity, and attachment to the brand.

73% of participants are more likely to recommend brands with loyalty programs.

One of the main approaches taken by companies regarding customer loyalty is reward programs; these are common, proven ways to boost sales, improve customer satisfaction, and expand the potential customer base via recommendations. According to the 2016 Bond Brand Loyalty study, 73% of participants are more likely to recommend brands with loyalty programs.

Customer loyalty as a reason to pay attention to client's experience

Furthermore, customer loyalty is at least one more reason to pay close attention to your client's experience; as these aspects build customer rapport and help to attract consumers in a competitive environment, it is possible to get your users engaged - and therefore loyal to your brand - by improving their experience. Understanding user problems/needs/desires and delivering a solution shaped for a memorable experience is the primary focus of user-centred design methodologies, and this approach helps to generate fidelity keeping your users emotionally connected with your brand.

A short story shows an example of brand loyalty earned by understanding user’s essential needs:

A few years ago when interviewing users for a project, I queried a blind person about his most memorable online shopping experience. He told me that it was on a particular e-commerce platform that offered a detailed description of clothes for visually impaired people; their standout feature was to have fully described in words, all the products attribute that a buyer would only typically ascertain by seeing the picture – far beyond simply making it accessible. Needless to say, from that moment on he preferred to buy his clothes at that store and became an advocate for that brand - "caught by a good experience".

online shopping experience

In this example, not all visitors required this improvement, but it made a huge difference for the ones who did need it, and it is a significant market advantage for this company.

Nowadays multiple industries are undertaking a migration to digital self-service, and as this model depends on the customers doing the things they need without interacting with another person, it increases the importance of designing the whole experience in advance, with the intention of offering the best solution possible. It is highly likely that in the last few months, you have probably had more interaction with your bank using ATM, and Internet / mobile banking, rather than visiting your branch. For this reason, the digital experience is so important and has become the most famous part of UX discipline.

Designing for people experience

Nonetheless, relationships are not established between entities and companies; it is well known that people are the essence of them. When designing for people, a good way to start improving your products/services’ UX, is by understanding the world from your customer’s perspective with empathy - and here is where the design approach makes a huge difference in your business strategy. As the digital interface is your contact channel with your target audience, without intermediaries, it should represent and offer a memorable and straightforward experience that will both encourage a person to choose your services, and increase your brand value and awareness with their contacts, through word of mouth and reputation.

The user experience approach improves customer loyalty through understanding how and why companies have succeeded or failed and achieve this through insights into the way companies develop their relationships using a broad understanding of both business and customer needs.

Once the UX specialists are aware of the friction points, they can work on solving them and offer a better overall experience. This approach will, in turn, strengthen and reinforce the bonds between the company and customer. If your clients interact with your digital services effortlessly, and in a way that met their needs - which was the reason for them to come to you in the first place - probably you will be their first port of call if they need further services in the future.

To provide a memorable user experience to your customers, you should ensure that you meet their demands in the best way possible, understanding the entire environment that surrounds the experience. The user experience concept goes far beyond a digital interface, can come from a website, application, store, social media network, email campaign and so on. The UX research and approach results in consumer loyalty because it makes the team understand that any design decision has a consequence, and you should be aware that any decision made would drive – or not – your customer's behaviours in a way that lead to positive outcomes.

If you want to know how your company can improve customer loyalty, contact our team and setup a meeting. Together we can decide what is the best plan for your specific needs.

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