User loyalty is simple: Make users happy and they’ll consistently come back. Even better, they’ll tell their friends about you, their friends will come and the cycle will continue. But getting there isn’t always as easy as it sounds. First, we have to understand that user loyalty is what happens when a user chooses you over the competition. This means that the experience you offer is either just as good or superior to other options.
Let’s distinguish two realities: User adoption vs. user loyalty. It’s one thing to get a user to download/use your product. It’s an entire other reality to satisfy this user and to avoid customer churn. To avoid customer churn, we must consistently seek to find ways to make an exceptional user experience. Ultimately, this will help to build user loyalty. For practical ways, see our five tips below:
Your design should feel effortless. Buttons and actions should be easy to find and allow for the user to complete their desired outcome. A simple example is doors: There’s usually a sticker on doors that say push & pull. Though most people are used to opening and closing doors, we still expect this distinction. An architect (or user experience designer) shouldn’t take for granted the simplicity of these kinds of signals. They help the user navigate space in a way that is familiar. And once you have the basics down, you can add more complicated features.
User loyalty for digital products is the same as loyalty in real life. How trustworthy of your bank would you be if every time you walked to the local facility they were closed? At some point, you’d close down your bank account and find another bank. The same goes for digital products. The more reliable, the greater the user loyalty. If people feel comfortable, safe and secure in your digital environment, you are building trust. Trust creates loyalty. At this point, it’s harder to switch once you’ve earned loyalty. The key is to keep building on trust and finding new, innovative ways to delight once you’ve got down the basics.
The best digital products find new ways to delight. To build user loyalty, you need the user to understand that you’re constantly making improvements for the sake of their experience. They key is to find ways that enhance the experience, even if it’s small. Sometimes the user doesn’t notice or react — but it impacts them and they enjoy it.
Here are a few questions you should ask when considering updates:
How can we improve this experience?
How do we make this easier?
What do our users love most about our product?
Where are users getting stuck?
What do users wish existed?
These are starter questions that are great for the design and engineering team to ponder. It will unearth opportunities for growth. At the end of the day, it’s about delighting users and building loyalty so that users are happy and product teams are successful.
“If you think good design is expensive, you should look at the cost of bad design.”
— Dr. Ralf Speth, Chief Executive Officer, Jaguar Land Rover
Learning from Other Industries
User loyalty doesn’t always have to come from user experience best practices. You can find inspiration in the most unlikely places. Think of the way grocery stores keep customers coming back, or consider the way restaurants entice diners for decades. There are key insights to be made from these experiences. How can you fold these into your practice? What can you learn from customer interactions in other industries?
Learn more about Neuron's process here.
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