Logo, mascot, colors and typefaces. These are some words that immediately pop out when someone mentions ‘branding’. Well, those are correct as branding involves people’s perception of certain company, product, or service. Having a distinctive design surely helps business to differentiate itself from the others.
However, to establish a solid branding that can convey what a business is about, we need to think beyond the visuals. People’s experiences are the basis of the image they form. It is about how people feel when they interact with the brand, from the beginning to the end.
Interacting with brands and products is traditionally associated with research, trial, as well as after purchase service experience. In today’s environment where technology is getting more accessible and advanced, though, brand interaction is swiftly moving to digital channels. People’s initial experience with brands would be when they first open your website, download your business’ mobile app, or engage with your brand on social media. Here is where user experience (UX) plays a part.
User Experience in Digital Branding
Have you ever tried to buy something online, search for the product’s name, and end up browsing in an online shopping website? Now, what if the website looks cluttered with many buttons all over the homepage, have confusing navigation, and you simply can’t figure it out? You will leave the website immediately, for sure.
Poor website creates an impression that the brand itself must be lousy. By neglecting the user experience aspect, brands may come off as incompetent and unreliable. Meanwhile, great user experience can function as an excellent branding utility.
First and foremost, your brand website has to be error free and not confusing for the users. Other essential things are to maintain a simple and intuitive navigation, as well as clear content and feedback. To ensure that these basic keys are fulfilled, usability testing tools can be employed to check on your website’s performance.
Further, user experience can be designed in line with brand image to echo your brand identity. Great user experience also increases brand’s credibility, create a consistent and reliable image, along with building customers’ trust and loyalty.
Successful Brand That Utilizes UX
Amid many other travel companies and booking apps, Airbnb is able to attract people into using their service. It is extremely popular, especially among young travellers who are eager to explore the local setting of their destination. Apart from the unique selling proposition (USP), one of the reason why Airbnb is so popular is its outstanding user experience. UX has been the focus of the company from the beginning, as can be seen from their consistent hiring of experience designers and researchers. They have teams specializing in identifying UX problems and goals, map user flows, and building the application prototype. Furthermore, they also put effort in localizing the user experience design. As a result, the Airbnb website and mobile application have an outstanding UX, even first time user will found little problem booking accommodation with it. And this, is a very good instance where company put UX at the heart of the brand and rightly generate positive outcomes from it.