tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/user-experience-and-usability Latest User Experience and Usability content from Econsultancy 2017-04-27T10:54:14+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69029 2017-04-27T10:54:14+01:00 2017-04-27T10:54:14+01:00 MealPal review: Are Londoners hungry for a lunch subscription service? Nikki Gilliland <p>I was lucky enough to bag a free trial recently, so what’s a girl to do other than write a review about it? Here’s what I thought of the whole process.  </p> <h4>What does MealPlan offer?</h4> <p>Originally launching in New York City, MealPlan is a lunch subscription service that lets you reserve food at a number of participating restaurants. It offers two plans – both of which last for 30 days – £4.79 per meal for 12 or £4.39 per meal for 20.</p> <p>Either way, it guarantees you will pay less than a fiver each time, along with the promise of your lunch being ready and waiting so you don’t have to queue.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5644/Flexible_plans.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="396"></p> <h4>Planning ahead</h4> <p>You can use the service through a dedicated app or via the main website.</p> <p>Once you’ve signed up, you will be instructed to reserve your meal between 5pm and 9:30am for the next day. If you miss this time slot, you’ll have to wait until the ‘kitchen’ is open again the following evening. This could prove mildly annoying for some, but I found it quite enjoyable to plan ahead.</p> <p>It’s also handy if you're someone who finds yourself stuck in a food rut. The participating restaurants are listed in a visually-pleasing map format, which you can then filter by specific location or type of food. This means you might come across places you've never tried before - plus it's actually quite fun to browse and see what everyone's dish of the day will be.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5658/IMG_4974.PNG" alt="" width="250"></p> <p>It's important to stress that <strong>there is only one choice of meal from each restaurant</strong>. However, this meal changes on a daily basis, meaning that you still get a decent amount of variety over the course of a week. It also helps facilitate the service in the first place, as it means restaurants can produce a higher volume of meals in a shorter time frame when there is no customisation involved.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5659/IMG_4975.PNG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>Skipping the queue (and deliberation)</h4> <p>Instead of paying more for delivery, MealPal is hoping that consumers will be drawn in by the prospect of paying less to pick up in person – getting one over on the likes of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68206-ubereats-vs-deliveroo-a-comparison-of-the-app-user-experience/" target="_blank">Deliveroo and UberEats</a>. Unsurprisingly, it heavily leans on the fact that consumers can skip the queue when they arrive.</p> <p>This is one area I was a little dubious about. It’s London after all – surely those already queuing will be less than pleased about people jumping ahead?</p> <p>Having said that, my experiences have so far been pretty seamless. More often than not, I have spotted other MealPal members politely enquiring at the side of counters and merely followed suit. If the company grows in popularity, however, one problem could be restaurants keeping on top of this demand at the same time as satisfying regular customers. </p> <p>Alongside the no-queue element, if you’re an indecisive sort, you might also enjoy the fact that you don’t have to make a decision on the spot. What's more, it means that you can actually spend more of your lunch break enjoying it rather than waiting around.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5660/IMG_4976.PNG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>Is it worth it?</h4> <p>I generally found there was no skimping on portion-size with MealPal, meaning you'd definitely be paying more if you ordered as a regular customer. You can also leave feedback on factors such as size and speed after each meal, and the app will learn your preferences over time in order to offer suggestions you might like.</p> <p>Overall, there’s no denying that it’s a viable way to save money for those who buy their lunch every day. Of course, success also depends on whether or not you’re guaranteed to use up all your meals within the time frame.</p> <p>This might put off customers from keeping subscriptions for the long-term, with a lack of freedom and repetitive menus being potential bugbears. Also keep in mind that, although most participating restaurants are littered in the City, Soho and Canary Wharf, there are more in some areas than others.</p> <p>Will I be signing up? I could be persuaded to give it a proper go in future, if cancelling membership is hassle-free. It beats going to Pret seven days a week anyway. </p> <p><strong><em>Related reading:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68197-which-restaurants-deliver-the-best-mobile-web-ux/" target="_blank">Which restaurants deliver the best mobile web UX?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64445-why-aren-t-restaurants-taking-advantage-of-mobile-search/" target="_blank">Why aren't restaurants taking advantage of mobile search?</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69036 2017-04-27T10:52:19+01:00 2017-04-27T10:52:19+01:00 Six ways Aldo’s new mobile site streamlines the shopping experience Nikki Gilliland <p>Designed to make shopping more seamless across all channels, the mobile site in particular has got customer convenience in mind. Here are six features that deliver on the promise.</p> <h4>Prominent imagery and reviews</h4> <p>One major focus of Aldo’s redesign has been making it easier for mobile users to gain a more detailed view of the product – recognising that even in-store shoppers would like <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9366-ecommerce-consumer-reviews-why-you-need-them-and-how-to-use-them/" target="_blank">customer reviews and ratings</a>.</p> <p>Reviews are now a prominent feature on all product pages, including information about general sizing, calf size and width. It even allows customers to give feedback on where or how they have worn the item – e.g. ‘wear it for prom or party’ – to give reviews much more depth.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5715/Product_pages_2.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <p>Alongside this, imagery is now at the forefront with photo galleries showcasing products from multiple angles. As well as giving a better view of the product, this also makes the mobile site look much more slick and polished.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5716/Product_pages.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>Social tie-ins </h4> <p>Today, <a href="http://www.fourthsource.com/social-media/social-media-shopping-next-step-retail-21641" target="_blank">more than half of consumers</a> who follow a brand on social media say they do so to research products and find inspiration. In line with this changing user behaviour, Aldo has introduced user-generated content into its mobile site, with an Instagram feed embedded directly into the homepage.</p> <p>Not only does this draw on the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68409-four-key-trends-within-the-world-of-influencer-marketing/" target="_blank">power of influencers</a>, but it also helps to drive additional purchases, with the ‘Shop the look’ feature including multiple products in one image.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5717/Shop_the_Look.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>In-store convenience</h4> <p>Recognising the fact that not everyone who browses online will want to checkout, the ‘Find a Store’ feature lets users locate the product to buy offline.</p> <p>Using geo-locational technology, it is super quick and easy to locate the store that’s nearest to you. With information on store opening times and an indication of how many items are in stock, it’s a highly effective way of driving offline conversions based on mobile interest. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5718/Find_a_store_2.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>True-Fit technology</h4> <p>In a bid to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68477-how-six-online-retailers-are-combatting-wrong-size-returns/" target="_blank">reduce returns</a>, Aldo is another retailer to integrate True Fit – technology that helps customers find the right size.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5719/TrueFit_2.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <p>By asking users the brand and size of a shoe that fits them particularly well, it is then able to tell them whether an item will be true to size, or whether to scale up or down.</p> <p>According to research, 60% of consumers say that they would be willing to provide information like this if it meant they'd be guaranteed the perfect fit first time. When it comes to shopping on mobile in comparison to in person, this reassurance can massively increase the likelihood of a transaction.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5720/True_Fit_3.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h4>Post-purchase tracking</h4> <p>Of course, the customer journey does not end after the point of purchase, which is nicely highlighted by Aldo’s easy tracking feature.</p> <p>Instead of hiding it within a help or customer service section, this is located towards the bottom of the landing page, with large font to catch the user’s attention.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5721/Easy_tracking.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <p>As well as being useful post-purchase, it is also likely to instil confidence in those in the early browsing stages, indicating that the brand is focused on delivering good customer service.</p> <h4>Simplified checkout  </h4> <p>Multiple forms or mandatory sign-ups are likely to increase <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67120-12-ways-to-reduce-basket-abandonment-on-your-ecommerce-site/" target="_blank">basket abandonment rates</a>, and when it comes to mobile, customers have even less time for complicated processes.</p> <p>Aldo’s redesign has simplified this experience, giving users the option for a guest checkout as well as condensing everything into a single page.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5722/Checkout_2.JPG" alt="" width="250"></p> <p>Upfront delivery information and returns policies are also helpful for providing reassurance throughout the process, driving customers towards that all-important final purchase.</p> <p><em><strong>Related articles:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68465-eight-features-to-appreciate-on-fat-face-s-new-ecommerce-site/">Eight features to appreciate on Fat Face’s new ecommerce site</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66644-how-debenhams-site-redesign-led-to-ecommerce-sales-growth/" target="_blank">How Debenhams' site redesign led to ecommerce sales growth</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69021 2017-04-25T11:00:00+01:00 2017-04-25T11:00:00+01:00 What is a customer mental model? Ben Davis <h4>A mental model is about more than just your product</h4> <p>The customer's mental model, fairly obviously, is the basis for their predictions about how a system will behave, and for the actions they ultimately take.</p> <p>These models are the product of previous interactions, both with the system at hand (if they have used it before) and with other systems. Pretty much all businesses, even arguably one such as Apple (which has an enormous influence on user behaviour), have to understand that a customer's interactions with a whole host of other products and services will inform their mental model.</p> <p>That's why the keypad interface on your smartphone looks not unlike the keypad on an 'old fashioned' landline handset.</p> <h4>Mental models can change</h4> <p>Mental models can change, but they exhibit inertia. Even when a company offers what they deem to be a superior system, it can be difficult for users to break old habits. Snapchat is a good example of an app that new users, more accustomed to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, have often found difficult to use.</p> <p>This inertia of customer mental models is why there is much convergence in the design of websites and interfaces. As Econsultancy's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/user-experience-and-interaction-design-for-mobile-and-web/">UX and Interaction Design</a> guide highlights, "predictability is particularly important for onboarding users, or for systems that have only a passing transactional relationship with users."</p> <p>The hierarchy of user experience components shown below, shows the importance of predictability and consistency in a successful UX.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4256/ux_hierarchy.png" alt="hierarchy of ux components" width="615"></p> <p><em>The hierarchy of user experience components</em></p> <h4>The hamburger debate</h4> <p>The use of a hamburger menu on mobile and desktop interfaces is probably the most notorious recent example of design that doesn't conform to all customer mental models. A hamburger menu essentially hides the navigation and users are less likely to use it.</p> <p>Some users' mental models dictate that they look for main navigation links at the top of the web page or the bottom of an app. <a href="https://www.nngroup.com/articles/hamburger-menus/">A 2016 study by Nielsen</a> confirms that hidden navigation (in the hamburger) is accessed less frequently than visible navigation. Accordingly, there are many <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68673-five-apps-websites-that-ditched-the-hamburger-menu/">websites and apps that have ditched the hamburger menu.</a></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/2135/spotify.png" alt="spotify app" width="300"></p> <p><em>Spotify ditched the hamburger</em></p> <h4>Culture influences mental models</h4> <p>Mental models have developed differently in different parts of the world. Culture has an obvious impact on mental models. Nowhere is this more obvious than examining the difference between website and app design in China compared to the West.</p> <p>See my colleague <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67509-why-does-chinese-web-design-look-so-busy-part-two/">Jeff Rajeck's article for a full explanation</a> as to why this is, but it basically comes down to language (it's harder to search with Chinese characters, so more links are provided) and an expectation of 'one-stop-shop' functionality over sparse aesthetic design.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/1268/1-blog-flyer.png" alt="chinese website" width="470" height="296"></p> <p><em>QQ.com </em></p> <h4>Design metaphors are used to build a mental model</h4> <p>Sticking with interface design, let's look at design metaphors. These metaphors take advantage of a user's previously amassed knowledge of the real world and help to assist the user when it comes to a digital interface.</p> <p>Econsultancy's UX guide gives some great examples and points out that these metaphors may evolve over time:</p> <blockquote> <p>..many interfaces feature a ‘toggle’ or ‘switch’ control to turn settings on or off. Everyone has used a light switch and inherently understands how tapping or sliding this switch will alter the state of the system.</p> <p>It’s important to realise also that metaphors change over time and need to be rethought. The mouse and pointer, once ubiquitous, don’t exist on the billion touchscreen mobile devices in use today. The ‘Save’ icon has been a floppy disk for decades, but many users clicking ‘Save’ today will have never laid eyes on a physical one.</p> </blockquote> <h4>Some more examples of mental models </h4> <p>Mental models aren't all about digital interfaces. But many bridge the physical and the digital. A great example is merchandising. Customers have a set idea of what products should be in which supermarket aisles, and this model translates across to online shopping, where they expect particular items to be found in particular categories (bakery, fresh, larder, frozen etc.).</p> <p>Below is shown a more complicated example of a mental model, for movie goers. It's taken from a <a href="https://www.crazyegg.com/blog/how-to-design-mental-models/">Crazy Egg blog</a>, but comes originally from <a href="http://rosenfeldmedia.com/books/mental-models/">a book by Indi Young</a>.</p> <p>Though there's lots to take in, you can see that the top part of the diagram is a customer's model for choosing a film. There are plenty of criteria - Which directors do I like? What do I find offensive? Where will I go to watch the movie? etc. Underneath this mental model is listed all the information and functionality a company would have to provide to conform with the customer mental model, such as different searches, lists, categories, and the ability to rent titles (the model pre-dates streaming).</p> <p><em>(Click to enlarge)</em></p> <p><a href="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5609/movie_goer_mental_model.jpg"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5609/movie_goer_mental_model.jpg" alt="mental model movie goer" width="800"></a></p> <p>Mental models might also be developed or understood by mapping a customer's day, purchase journey or entire lifecycle.</p> <h4>In summary</h4> <p>Digital technology is certainly changing customer mental models when it comes to the purchase journey. Customers expect availability of information, control over their services, and even a level of transparency and brand purpose hitherto unseen.</p> <p>Whether marketers are mapping customer journeys, designing a store or an app interface, understanding these mental models is incredibly important. Doing so gives confidence, clarity and consistency.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/3008 2017-04-21T12:55:00+01:00 2017-04-21T12:55:00+01:00 Internet Statistics Compendium Econsultancy <p>Econsultancy’s <strong>Internet Statistics Compendium</strong> is a collection of the most recent statistics and market data publicly available on online marketing, ecommerce, the internet and related digital media. </p> <p><strong>The compendium is available as 11 main reports (in addition to two sector-specific reports, B2B and Healthcare &amp; Pharma) across the following topics:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/advertising-media-statistics">Advertising</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/content-statistics">Content</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-statistics">Customer Experience</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/web-analytics-statistics">Data and Analytics</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/demographics-technology-adoption">Demographics and Technology Adoption</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/uk/reports/ecommerce-statistics">Ecommerce</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/email-ecrm-statistics">Email and eCRM</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-statistics">Mobile</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/search-marketing-statistics">Search</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-statistics">Social</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/strategy-and-operations-statistics">Strategy and Operations</a></strong></li> </ul> <p>Updated monthly, each document is a comprehensive compilation of internet statistics and digital market research with data, facts, charts and figures. The reports have been collated from information available to the public, which we have aggregated together in one place to help you quickly find the internet statistics you need - a huge time-saver for presentations and reports.</p> <p>There are all sorts of internet statistics which you can slot into your next presentation, report or client pitch.</p> <p><strong>Sector-specific data and reports are available under the following areas:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong><a title="B2B Internet Statistics Compendium" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-internet-statistics-compendium">B2B</a> </strong></li> <li><strong><a title="Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals Internet Statistics Compendium" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/healthcare-and-pharmaceuticals-internet-statistics-compendium/">Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals</a> </strong></li> <li><strong><a title="Financial Services and Insurance Internet Statistics Compendium" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/financial-services-and-insurance-internet-statistics-compendium/">Financial Services and Insurance</a> </strong></li> <li><strong><a title="Retail Statistics Compendium" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/retail-statistics-compendium/" target="_self">Retail</a></strong></li> </ul> <p><strong>Regions covered in each document (where data is available) are:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Global</strong></li> <li><strong>UK</strong></li> <li><strong>North America</strong></li> <li><strong>Asia</strong></li> <li><strong>Australia and New Zealand</strong></li> <li><strong>Europe</strong></li> <li><strong>Latin America</strong></li> <li><strong>MENA</strong></li> </ul> <p>A sample of the Internet Statistics Compendium is available for free, with various statistics included and a full table of contents, to show you what you're missing.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68973 2017-04-12T10:47:00+01:00 2017-04-12T10:47:00+01:00 13 examples of dark patterns in ecommerce checkouts Ben Davis <p>I thought I would select some examples of dark patterns found in ecommerce checkouts to highlight the issue. Most of the examples are taken from the #darkpatterns hashtag on Twitter.</p> <h4 lang="en" dir="ltr">Misdirection</h4> <p>Where the website design nudges users towards a more expensive option and distracts them from the standard option.</p> <p>Misdirection is the sneakiest type of dark pattern because it exists in a grey area. This sort of tactic is commonplace because it is harder to outlaw, as opposed to the 'sneak into basket' tactic (discussed further down the article), which is outlawed in the EU.</p> <p>The example from Delta, shown below, uses a red button to nudge checking-in users towards an upgrade. A must less conspicuous grey button must be selected to say 'no thanks' and continue checking in. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Dear <a href="https://twitter.com/Delta">@Delta</a> UX Team, This Check In screen is borderline evil. That makes you borderline evil for letting it be created. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UXFail?src=hash">#UXFail</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DarkPattern?src=hash">#DarkPattern</a> <a href="https://t.co/khPjMNtvHX">pic.twitter.com/khPjMNtvHX</a></p> — Ed Campodonico (@uxed) <a href="https://twitter.com/uxed/status/846926871887462400">March 29, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>Econsultancy blogger Paul Randall has previously highlighted <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68887-ethical-cro-the-end-of-dark-patterns/">an even sneakier example of misdirection</a> from ZSL London Zoo.</p> <p>In the screenshot below you can see how the 'add to basket with donation' green button appears to suggest moving forward to the next stage of the checkout. The colourless 'without donation' button points backward, leaving the unobservant user to assume this is some sort of back arrow to return to a previous page.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4654/zsl_focused.jpg" alt="misdirection zsl" width="700" height="428"></p> <p>Misdirection is probably most commonly found on email unsubscribe interfaces. When a user has clicked to unsubscribe, it is obviously devious to highlight the '<em>keep my subscription</em>' option over the actual intention of the user (to unsubscribe).</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/lootcrate">@lootcrate</a> Making "Keep my subscription" an orange button on a page where I'm cancelling is deceptive and in poor taste. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/darkpattern?src=hash">#darkpattern</a> <a href="https://t.co/7E2Kb80d1y">pic.twitter.com/7E2Kb80d1y</a></p> — Aaron Benjamin (@aBenjamin765) <a href="https://twitter.com/aBenjamin765/status/830454611769069570">February 11, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h4>Checkbox treachery </h4> <p>Obfuscatory checkboxes are probably the most famous and most common examples of dark patterns. What we're mainly talking about is opt-in or opt-out checkboxes and accompanying spiel that businesses use to give customers notional control over how their contact data is used.</p> <p>Whilst in the US the CAN-SPAM Act does not restrict how businesses can collect new subscribers (i.e. they do not need to gain prior consent), in the EU consumers must be offered an opt-out option.</p> <p>In practice though, these mandatory opt-out options can be a little confusing, or even downright sly. Below is a heinous mobile example provided by <a href="http://www.uxnewzealand.com/speakers/ben-and-gareth/">Ben Tollady and Gareth Roberts at UX New Zealand</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5391/rac.jpg" alt="dark patterns" width="600"></p> <p>Of course, another common dark pattern amongst checkboxes is double negatives – language that makes the user unsure whether to tick or to untick. Here's a great example...</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/darkpatterns">@darkpatterns</a> During registration... <a href="https://t.co/wsqsUyVmod">https://t.co/wsqsUyVmod</a> … <a href="https://twitter.com/Codemasters">@Codemasters</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DarkPatterns?src=hash">#DarkPatterns</a> <a href="https://t.co/sKzjjq00Tm">pic.twitter.com/sKzjjq00Tm</a></p> — Trinity (@Omicron666_live) <a href="https://twitter.com/Omicron666_live/status/847701153756270592">March 31, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>Or in the example below, a seeming call-to-action next to the checkbox ('keeping in touch') which is at odds with the functionality of the checkbox ('keeping in touch' is merely a heading). Not cool...</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/virginmedia">@virginmedia</a> This is called a <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UX?src=hash">#UX</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DarkPattern?src=hash">#DarkPattern</a> &amp; is rather unethical in it's design and possibly illegal. Not cool<br> <a href="https://t.co/sbuHsOcVbg">https://t.co/sbuHsOcVbg</a> <a href="https://t.co/DAFs20hFOJ">pic.twitter.com/DAFs20hFOJ</a></p> — Joelle Bataille (@Joelle_Bataille) <a href="https://twitter.com/Joelle_Bataille/status/844206550839414784">March 21, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>Lastly, here's a more subtle example of a dark pattern – what appears to be a radio is in fact a checkbox. One might argue this is a genuine mistake – it's certainly one to look out for on your own website. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">The <a href="https://twitter.com/PostOffice">@PostOffice</a> styles up opt-out checkboxes to look like radiobuttons implying they're mutually exclusive <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DarkPatterns?src=hash">#DarkPatterns</a> <a href="https://t.co/o6kMCeqiot">pic.twitter.com/o6kMCeqiot</a></p> — Benji Weber (@benjiweber) <a href="https://twitter.com/benjiweber/status/788988879588253698">October 20, 2016</a> </blockquote> <p>It's pretty simple, if you've decided to give the user the option (as is necessary in Europe), you should provide an opt in (not an opt out) with clear supporting text.</p> <h4>Sneak into basket</h4> <p>This is another classic. It is usually performed by offering a supplementary service or product to a user, who is made to actively unselect this extra product otherwise it will appear in the checkout.</p> <p>The worst transgressors here are in the travel sector. Ryanair still forces customers to deselect an insurance product when adding a flight to basket, despite the fact that this tactic is illegal according to the EU's consumer rights laws.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5304/don_t_insure_me.png" alt="ryanair dark pattern" width="651" height="427"></p> <p><em>Image via <a href="http://www.digital-tonic.co.uk/digital-tonic-blog/ryanairs-new-website-still-hiding-mean-tricks-dark-patterns/">Digital Tonic's Ryanair website review</a>.</em></p> <p>Sports Direct is another high profile abuser of this dark pattern. In the past a 'free' mug and Sports Direct magazine (£1 delivery charge) have been added to customer baskets online, without any notification.</p> <p>Though the retailer has now added a pop-up offering the 'free' mug to users, note how inconspicuous the 'no thanks' text is compared to the large white 'yes please' button.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Wow <a href="https://twitter.com/sportsdirect">@sportsdirect</a>, a free gift! </p> <p>But what's this extra £1 delivery charge, ON TOP of the £4.99 standard delivery charge? </p> <p>Sleazetastic! <a href="https://t.co/sHggF8Pfwi">pic.twitter.com/sHggF8Pfwi</a></p> — Dark Patterns (@darkpatterns) <a href="https://twitter.com/darkpatterns/status/819884967614447616">January 13, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h4>Obscured pricing</h4> <p>Yet another travel example here. British Airways does not tell bookers what price they will have to pay to add a bag to the hold after they have booked their ticket, merely stating 'for a fee'. Nor does it tell the price of seat selection or booking amendments.</p> <p>The obvious intention here is not to undermine the price of the £31 upgrade from 'basic' to 'plus'.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">No way to find out cost to add a hold bag when booking with <a href="https://twitter.com/British_Airways">@british_airways</a> anymore. Trying to upsell ‘Plus’. Horrible <a href="https://twitter.com/darkpatterns">@darkpatterns</a> <a href="https://t.co/ZzUCMG3PlV">pic.twitter.com/ZzUCMG3PlV</a></p> — James Russell (@kazaroth) <a href="https://twitter.com/kazaroth/status/838700975481303040">March 6, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>It's not just obscured pricing that can be a problem. Darkpatterns.org <a href="https://darkpatterns.org/types-of-dark-pattern/price-comparison-prevention">highlights how Sainsbury's website does not allow comparison of all of its groceries</a>, instead displaying some prices per weight and some per unit. This makes it hard for users to understand which product is cheapest. </p> <h4>Misinformation / terrible language </h4> <p>I can't work out if this example is intentional or not. I hope not. But again it highlights the need to look at all your functional ecommerce copy and determine if it is as clear as it could be.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="und" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Darkpattern?src=hash">#Darkpattern</a> <a href="https://t.co/FwvZ9bzHWP">pic.twitter.com/FwvZ9bzHWP</a></p> — Replying to (@twoplayer) <a href="https://twitter.com/twoplayer/status/823950393365381123">January 24, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h4>Hidden costs</h4> <p>In the EU, all extra charges such as shipping must be highlighted (at least the fact that they exist and will be applied) before the customer gets to the checkout.</p> <p>A good example of hidden costs provided by darkpatterns.org is <a href="https://darkpatterns.org/types-of-dark-pattern/hidden-costs">on the US flower delivery website ProFlowers</a>.</p> <h4>The ethics of CRO</h4> <p>So, that's the end of my roundup of examples. Please do check out <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68887-ethical-cro-the-end-of-dark-patterns">Paul Randall's post on the ethics of conversion rate optimisation</a> – there is a way to optimise without misleading the customer.</p> <p>And do share any dark patterns you see on your travels by using the #darkpatterns hashtag.</p> <p><em>For more advice on UI design, subscribers can download the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/user-experience-and-interaction-design-for-mobile-and-web/">User Experience and Interaction Design for Mobile &amp; Web Best Practice Guide</a>.</em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68981 2017-04-11T15:00:00+01:00 2017-04-11T15:00:00+01:00 Could established financial services firms lose a quarter of their revenue to fintechs? Patricio Robles <p>If that came to pass, it would represent a major upheaval in the financial services market and could force many of them to make drastic changes, including potential mass layoffs.</p> <p>Of the executives PwC surveyed, 88% indicated that they believe their firms are threatened by fintech firms that offer standalone financial services. By focusing on specific segments of financial services, fintechs have in many cases been able to build better technologies and products than entrenched firms. And on top of those better technologies and products, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68159-five-ways-fintech-upstarts-are-disrupting-established-financial-institutions/">many are delivering better overall experiences than established firms</a>.</p> <p>That has encouraged consumers to "unbundle" the financial services they purchase, making the days of giving all their business to one or two companies, such as a national or regional bank, a thing of the past.</p> <p>Segments of the financial services industry that PwC has identified as being most vulnerable to standalone fintechs and unbundling are payments, money transfers and lending.</p> <h4>Down, not out?</h4> <p>But are established financial services firms really so vulnerable that they could lose a quarter of their revenue in the next several years? That figure is a significant one, but it's not as far-fetched as it might seem.</p> <p>For evidence that change can occur quickly in the typically slow-moving market, consider the following:</p> <ul> <li>Following its <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68334-wells-fargo-scandal-shows-why-banks-are-vulnerable-to-fintech-startups/">fake account scandal</a>, Wells Fargo, considered by many to be the best-managed big bank in the U.S. after it emerged from the Great Recession largely unscathed, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/new/%20http:/www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/news/2017/03/21/wells-fargo-checking-accounts-credit-cards-wfc.html">recently revealed</a> that new checking account openings have dropped by 43% year-over-year and new credit card applications have plunged by an even greater amount (55%) year-over-year.</li> <li>Non-bank lenders, many of which conduct business primarily online, <a href="http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-nonbank-lenders-20151130-story.html">have grown</a> their share of the consumer, business and mortgage loan markets substantially since the Great Recession. And their visibility among borrowers only continues to increase. For example, according to a J.D. Power study, 60% of small business owners who applied for a loan in the past 12 months considered a non-bank lender. At the fastest growing small businesses, that number increases to nearly two-thirds (74%).</li> </ul> <p>The good news for large financial services firms is that most of them clearly recognize that they are being disrupted and are taking action. 82% of the executives PwC polled indicated that the coming years would see increased partnership between their firms and fintechs, and many of their firms are investing in homegrown initiatives that could help thwart competition from fintechs.</p> <p>For example, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon recently <a href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/new/Upstart%20fintech%20companies%20are%20disrupting%20established%20financial%20services%20players,%20namely%20large%20banks,%20but%20just%20how%20serious%20a%20threat%20are%20these%20upstarts%20to%20firms%20that%20collectively%20control%20trillions%20of%20dollars%20of%20capital?%20%20According%20to%20a%20new%20study%20conducted%20by%20PricewaterhouseCoopers,%20which%20polled%20more%20than%201,300%20executives,%20established%20financial%20services%20firms%20could%20lose%20nearly%20a%20quarter%20(24%)%20of%20their%20revenue%20to%20fintechs%20in%20the%20next%20three%20to%20five%20years.">mentioned</a> that his firm spent more than half a billion dollars last year on "emerging fintech solutions." That's a huge amount when compared to the capital available to the average fintech, but still just a relatively small portion of the $9.5bn his firm invested in technology generally.</p> <p>But it's not clear that the abundance of capital is even beneficial to big financial services firms. Fintechs are largely succeeding by focusing on a very specific segment of the broader financial services market, building better customer experiences, and taking advantage of their ability to move in a nimble fashion. They largely don't have to worry about large legacy systems, and their priorities aren't pulled in a million different directions because they don't have a million different lines of business.</p> <p>In other words, contrary to what financial giants might be inclined to believe, older, bigger and richer can bring with it many liabilities for established institutions – liabilities that many fintechs are successfully taking advantage of.</p> <p>From this perspective, the greatest challenge large financial services firms have in addressing the fintech threat might be themselves, not the fintechs. Those that don't want to risk losing a big chunk of their revenue base would be wise to recognize that instead of trying to crush fintechs, they should try to emulate them.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68975 2017-04-10T11:00:00+01:00 2017-04-10T11:00:00+01:00 The UX that time forgot: Online travel agents must step up Ben Davis <h4>Things are improving, but definitely aren't perfect</h4> <p>Before I reveal to you the offending bit of UX from eDreams, it’s worth considering the evolution of UX in the travel sector.</p> <p>If there was one moment when customer experience across all sectors started to be taken seriously, I would argue it was in 2013 <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64796-ryanair-cmo-digital-is-key-for-improving-our-customer-experience/">when Ryanair vowed to start doing right by the customer</a>.</p> <p>Chief exec Michael O'Leary said, "We should try to eliminate things that unnecessarily piss people off," and he admitted that the airline was not trying hard enough in its customer service.</p> <p>From booking through to arrival at your destination, the Ryanair experience used to be less than edifying. As far as digital gripes went, the online checkout got most people miffed. Customers accepted the fact they would be offered a variety of upsells (extra baggage, insurance, speedy boarding, seat selection etc.), but having them selected as default and then needing to unselect them always seemed shady.</p> <p>Thankfully, Ryanair's website was updated to get rid of these automatic selections, but it's worth remembering there is still a particularly famous <a href="https://darkpatterns.org/">dark pattern</a> present in the airline's checkout.</p> <p>Under the insurance dropdown, Ryanair helpfully tells you: 'Already insured? Select “Don’t insure me” in the dropdown box'. However, "Don't insure me" is very sneakily 'hidden' between Denmark and France, rather than placed at the top of the dropdown options with the other most-common selections.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5304/don_t_insure_me.png" alt="don't ensure me" width="651" height="427"></p> <p><em><a href="http://www.digital-tonic.co.uk/digital-tonic-blog/ryanairs-new-website-still-hiding-mean-tricks-dark-patterns/">Image via Digital Tonic's Ryanair website review.</a></em></p> <p>This sort of UX is retrograde, but Ryanair isn't the only offender.</p> <h4>Offending UX </h4> <p>Back to the present. The experience I had with eDreams. There it is in the screenshot below. Take a minute to consider it before I point out the obvious ways in which it is anathema to a good customer experience.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5300/edreams.jpg" alt="edreams ux" width="800"></p> <p>So, I have to pay £3.99 to use the ‘boarding pass request’ service. With no explanation here of what the service provides, the UX is intended to inspire anxiety in the ‘basic’ customer. Will I get my boarding pass if I don’t upgrade?</p> <p>There’s a destination weather report if I pay £3.99, as if eDreams has to pay for its own in-house meteorology team.</p> <p>A personalised mobile site is also thrown in if I upgrade. Personalised how? Can I check in online otherwise? Again, there’s no information to guide me. Should I pay just for peace of mind?</p> <p>Lastly, it costs a whopping £5.99 for SMS booking and flight notifications. I have already added my phone number in the booking process and now I have to pay eDreams to serve me in my preferred channel (with the OTA dressing it up as a super-duper modern value-add).</p> <p>One thing to note here – if you abandon your basket, eDreams seems more than happy to send an abandoned basket email (see below) free of charge. And to retarget me with display advertising. Again, gratis.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5302/edream_email.jpg" alt="edreams email" width="350"> </p> <p><em>Abandoned basket email from eDreams</em></p> <p>Of course, the biggest problem in this UX is that the (pointless) service for which I have to pay £3.99 is labelled as ‘standard’. But it doesn’t come as standard. Insert chin-rubbing emoji here.</p> <p>What’s more, there’s one of those uses of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63250-mind-games-using-heuristic-theory-to-increase-customer-spend-online/">heuristics</a>, with ‘standard’ highlighted in blue and labelled as ‘most popular’. I’m sure it is, after customers have been scared into upgrading.</p> <p>What this feature boils down to is that last checkbox – the idea that I have to pay for ‘preferential customer service’. Whilst I accept that speedy boarding has become a fact of life in airports, there’s no reason why an airline or a booking agency’s customer service should have a first and second class.</p> <p>If eDreams has built out all its SMS and mobile functionality, why not just enable it for all passengers, enhancing my experience and making me more likely to book again in future, instead of with a competitor such as GoToGate?</p> <p>In not considering the customer, eDreams shows it believes that ticket price is the only motivation for the customer (i.e. customers will return for these cheap tickets, whatever service they get). Then eDreams tries to get upsell using crafty techniques and dark patterns. This is nothing more than an elaborate and time-consuming dance between customer and checkout. It’s a stupid arms race in which I have to figure out the OTA's tactics, and everything takes longer. It is just horrid.</p> <p>Okay, this is only one part of the eDreams checkout, and the rest is pretty much in line with others in the sector. But this artefact and the Ryanair insurance example above should be experiences we point to as marketers and tell our organisations "no more". The customer deserves better.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68977 2017-04-07T10:00:00+01:00 2017-04-07T10:00:00+01:00 10 notable digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Before we kick things off, remember that you can also download the <a style="font-weight: normal;" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium" target="_blank">Internet Statistics Compendium</a> for lots more.</p> <h3>A third of B2B marketers are tracking sales from social</h3> <p>A new <a href="http://immediatefuture.co.uk/resource/b2b-report-what-has-social-media-ever-done-for-us/?utm_source=PR&amp;utm_medium=Msr&amp;utm_theme=&amp;utm_term=&amp;utm_campaign=B2B_Report17#sf_form_salesforce_w2l_lead_22" target="_blank">report by IF</a> has found that 33% of marketers are tracking sales through social media, with social platforms driving sales upwards of £50,000 per month. </p> <p>However, some B2B marketers are less adept at measuring social value, with 58% not rating their ability to measure social at all. More than one in 10 marketers also appear nonchalant about the benefits - 13% suggest that social media measurement is neither important or unimportant.  </p> <p>Senior marketers are much more optimistic, with 67% being confident that their ability to measure social will improve in the next two years, and 50% of them planning to increase resource and budget investment in the next 12 months.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5309/IF_report.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="480"></p> <h3>More marketing teams planning to restructure in 2017</h3> <p>An increasing number of marketing teams are restructuring to cope with technological challenges, according to new research by Technology for Marketing, the IDM and Pure360.</p> <p>In a survey, 33% of marketing teams said they expect to become more specialist in 2017, with just 3% becoming generalist in their expertise. However, just 12% of marketers said they exclusively ‘own’ the marketing technology they rely on, instead turning to partnerships with IT and external technology teams to get results. </p> <p>This highlights the need for restructuring, with marketing teams having to move away from all-purpose marketing managers towards specialist roles, agencies and freelancers.</p> <h3>UK consumers more trustworthy of familiar brands</h3> <p><a href="http://lp.outbrain.com/research-unconscious-content-bias-uk/?utm_source=press&amp;utm_campaign=research-content-bias&amp;utm_medium=pr" target="_blank">Outbrain suggests</a> that UK consumers place greater trust in familiar brands, with 77% of survey respondents citing them as a reliable source of information.</p> <p>In comparison, 67% say they trust content shared by their own friends on social media, while three in five people believe relevant content from even unfamiliar brands to be trustworthy.</p> <p>Research also shows that consumers place more trust in traditional publishers as opposed to social media or blogs, with two-thirds of respondents believing that content from the likes of The Guardian or The Sun is reliable.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5310/Outbrain.JPG" alt="" width="400" height="670"></p> <h3>Traffic to betting websites surge ahead of the Grand National</h3> <p>Hitwise has analysed the key data behind last years’ Grand National, looking at its demographic in comparison to other racing events.</p> <p>It found that betting websites saw a 35% increase in online traffic in the week of the race last year, with those searching for betting and racing sites most likely to be between the ages of 25 and 34.</p> <p>It also discovered that people who earn over £100,000 are 161% more likely to visit racing and betting sites in the week of Royal Ascot. Meanwhile, people aged 18-24 years old are most likely to visit Sky Bet over the week of Royal Ascot, whereas those aged 55 and over are more likely to choose At The Races.</p> <h3>37% of smartphone owners are using voice technology</h3> <p>According to a new report by <a href="http://www.mindshareworld.com/uk/about/speak-easy" target="_blank">Mindshare</a>, voice technology has the ability to drive a greater emotional connection with brands. </p> <p>A study carried out by Neuro Insight found that emotional activity was twice as high when consumers voiced a brand question rather than typing it out. People also find it much easier to use, as 50% less brain activity occurs when processing an answer delivered by voice.</p> <p>The technology is already becoming prevalent among smartphone users, with 37% using voice technology of some kind at least once a month and 18% using it at least weekly.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5312/SpeakEasy.JPG" alt="" width="599" height="357"></p> <p><em>Reasons for using voice technology</em></p> <h3>Aldi and Lidl are struggling to build shopper loyalty </h3> <p>An ICLP survey has revealed that Aldi and Lidl are struggling to build consumer loyalty despite an ever-growing market share. In a survey of over 1,000 people, 37% of Tesco shoppers and 34% of Sainsbury’s shoppers felt that their custom and loyalty was rewarded. In contrast, just 16% of people said the same for Lidl and just 9% for Aldi. </p> <p>Similarly, only one in four Brits believe that they get something back when they share their personal information with a supermarket. 52% of Sainsbury’s shoppers and 35% of Tesco shoppers said that they have benefited from sharing data, compared to 26% of Aldi shoppers, and 20% of Lidl shoppers.</p> <h3>UK retailers are failing to invest in AI and machine learning</h3> <p>A <a href="http://www.qubit.com/research/catalysts-of-change" target="_blank">Qubit report</a> on the future of retail tech suggests that the majority of brands are failing to invest in artificial intelligence, despite recognising its potential.</p> <p>While 82% believe that machine learning will have an impact on the retail sector, just 48% are currently using it in their business. As a result, 82% of companies are planning to invest less than £1m to introduce new tech, while 22% are planning to invest less than £50,000. </p> <p>Effective data collection appears to be hindering AI, with just a third of retailers having a strategy to collect and analyse data across all their channels. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5311/Qubit.JPG" alt="" width="588" height="618"></p> <h3>Digital performance of luxury brands is improving</h3> <p>Research by <a href="http://contactlab.com/en/more/reports/digital-competitive-map-march-2017/?step=step2" target="_blank">ContactLab</a> shows that there’s been a significant improvement in many luxury brand’s digital performance over the past year.</p> <p>The Digital Competitive Map found that Burberry still has the strongest digital presence of 32 international fashion and luxury brands, with Louis Vuitton and Gucci also remaining stable in comparison to the previous year.</p> <p>An overall 5% increase in the digital performance of 32 brands is said to be due to a focus on geographical localisation, a wider range of languages used on brand websites, and strong email campaigns. However, some are still lagging behind on social, with only half of the 32 brands using Instagram and only 10 having Snapchat accounts.</p> <h3>Consumer loyalty reduced by the threat of security breaches</h3> <p>A report by <a href="https://www.retail-week.com/analysis/retailers-face-losing-battle-in-fight-against-hackers/7019678.article" target="_blank">Retail Week and Cisco</a> has highlighted the impact of data breaches on both consumers and retailers.</p> <p>In a survey of 2,000 consumers, 72% said that they would be unlikely to do businesses with a company that has experienced a data breach. If their own personal data had been breached, nearly nine out of 10 respondents said they would reduce spend if the retailer did not take steps to quickly correct the problem.</p> <p>Lastly, only 9% of consumers would rule out taking legal action against a company if a data breach has occurred. However, 53% said they would definitely consider it and 38% would give it due consideration.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5308/Retail_Week.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="404"></p> <h3>US news consumption on the rise</h3> <p>Finally, a <a href="http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/reports/2017/the-nielsen-total-audience-report-q4-2016.html" target="_blank">study by Nielsen</a> has found a rise in news consumption in the US. Consumers spent 73.5bn minutes consuming news content in the average week last year – an annual increase of 18%.</p> <p>Insight suggests that the rise is due to an ‘unrelenting flood of stories’ resulting from events like the presidential election. To put this into context, the typical consumer dedicated 18.5 hours to this activity a week in 2016, compared to just over 16 hours in 2012 when the last presidential election was held.</p> <p>National cable television has been the main beneficiary of the rise, claiming 20 additional minutes of weekly attention in the first month of this year compared with the average from last year as a whole.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68908 2017-04-05T13:00:00+01:00 2017-04-05T13:00:00+01:00 Website design briefs: Be very careful what you ask for Paul Randall <p dir="ltr">Briefs typically go wrong for a very simple reason: they start off focusing in the wrong place. The list of requirements is usually framed along the lines of ‘We need the website to…’ The ‘we’ in question is, of course, the business commissioning the new site.</p> <p dir="ltr">This is more or less the normal mindset when agencies are briefed about redesigning a website or ecommerce store. It’s also, in my view, completely the wrong focus.</p> <p dir="ltr">And if your project starts off asking for the wrong things don’t be surprised if it doesn’t deliver the ROI you hoped for. It will then take a lot of effort and cost down the line to deliver the performance and conversions you need.</p> <h3 dir="ltr">A clearer way of thinking about your new site</h3> <p dir="ltr">There’s a simple change in the way you think about your new site and how you brief your agency. It’s one that could lead to a much better return on investment.</p> <p dir="ltr">Instead of, <em>‘we need to...’</em>, how about, <em>‘our customers need to...’</em></p> <p dir="ltr">If everything you ask for in your redesign brief is based on what you believe your business needs, where does that leave your customers? Sure, business goals matter. There has to be a clear picture of how your new site fits into your wider business goals. They absolutely should influence the project brief - more than is often the case.</p> <p dir="ltr">Having a clear and common understanding of what results you want the new site to achieve (how many more sales or enquiries, in what areas of your business), will be an improvement on many briefs. But you can, and should, go further.</p> <p dir="ltr">The <a title="UX Project Checklist" href="https://uxchecklist.github.io/" target="_blank">UX Project Checklist</a> is a great place to start looking at all the components you'll need for a successful website.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4788/Screen_Shot_2017-03-17_at_11.16.27.png" alt="UX Project Checklist" width="1266" height="613"></p> <h3 dir="ltr">Customers are your business</h3> <p dir="ltr">Your business goals can only be achieved through the <em><strong>behaviour</strong></em> of your customers. So how can it make sense if they are anything less than the focal point of the website project? </p> <p dir="ltr">Think back to the last time you briefed a web agency. How much weight did you put on customers: what they want to do, what they like, what turns them off? Did you have reliable insights into any of these?</p> <p>The big advantage (and challenge) of focusing on customer intent and preferences is that there are no shortcuts. To get to this level of clarity there’s no room for the easy assumptions, generalisations and misplaced optimism that end up in low conversion rates and poor returns. To understand your customers you need structured effort, proper research, data and careful observation.</p> <p dir="ltr">The benefit of this effort is that your new site is designed to deliver the user experience your customers crave - and which you’re currently failing to deliver. And to do this from day one!</p> <h3 dir="ltr">Audience Personas - so what?</h3> <p dir="ltr">You certainly need to go way beyond writing a set of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66976-are-your-audience-personas-really-helping-to-inform-your-content-strategy/">audience personas</a> and pinning them on the wall to remind the developers who the site is for.</p> <p dir="ltr">You, or your design agency, can learn a surprising amount from your current site before dismissing it completely. There, you have information showing how people move through the site, where they drop off and where they fail to convert. You probably also have onsite search data that might indicate unsatisfied user intent.</p> <p dir="ltr">You can supplement these insights with usability studies to get a deeper level of understanding. Analytics may point out where the problems are, but not why!</p> <p dir="ltr">The start of every new website project should always involve an investigation into the existing site to find the strengths and the weaknesses before starting again from scratch. You have to remember if you alienate your existing customers, there is a higher chance they will leave. Retention isn’t thought of as much as acquisition in new site builds.</p> <p dir="ltr">It could be that you don’t want to start your redesign straight away. You can <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67249-a-beginner-s-guide-to-a-b-testing/">A/B split test</a> enhancements and new landing pages before you incorporate them in your new site. That way you can prove that they really do give users an experience they value.</p> <p dir="ltr">From these insights you can build a clearer picture of the user experience you need to deliver across your site. You’ll have a more meaningful design brief. The brief will be based around creating the user experience that will serve up the business results you need. </p> <h3 dir="ltr">Understand intent</h3> <p dir="ltr">Document, in detail, the journeys that will allow customers to fulfil their intent as quickly and easily as possible. Be clear about how customers will expect to interact with your new site. Specify what they will need to learn or understand along the route to a successful conversion. These are the questions that so often go unasked. Customer fears, uncertainties and doubts are conversion killers!</p> <p dir="ltr">When you think you know the answers you can develop and user test wireframes and prototypes, based on streamlined user journeys. Leave nothing to chance. You’ll then be in a happier position of launching the new site with confidence.</p> <p dir="ltr">You’ll be as sure as you can be that it delivers the best user experience possible - because your customers were in the driving seat from the outset.</p> <h3 dir="ltr">Are you really ready to brief your agency?</h3> <ul> <li>Can you clearly articulate what different users will want to do on your site and how they will travel through your content?</li> <li>Do you know how you need to speak to your customers? Could you say what their favourite film is likely to be, what they read, what TV programmes they like? These questions will tell you a lot about the language and images needed to engage and persuade them.</li> <li>Can you list five things customers most value and most hate about your current site? How do you know?</li> <li>Do you have a clear conversion process and can you quantify how your new site needs to perform at each stage?</li> <li>Can you specify exactly what you will need to measure on your new site (over and above the obvious stuff like bounce rates)?</li> </ul> <p dir="ltr">If all that sounds too difficult there’s always the easy way out: find an agency that doesn’t ask tricky questions and hope for the best.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>Subcribers can download Econsultancy's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/user-experience-and-interaction-design-for-mobile-and-web/">User Experience and Interaction Design for Mobile &amp; Web</a></strong></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68954 2017-03-31T13:25:00+01:00 2017-03-31T13:25:00+01:00 10 mesmerising digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>If that’s not enough, head on over to the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium" target="_blank">Internet Statistics Compendium</a> for more.</p> <h3>Video advertising outperforms desktop display</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">A report released by Integral Ad Science has revealed that video advertising outperformed desktop display for the first time. </p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Compared to the first half of 2016, video viewability showed significant improvement in the second half of the year, increasing from 40% to 58.2%. Meanwhile, the completion rate in view increased from 26.7% to 35.1%.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Video brand risk also improved, decreasing from 11.2% to 8.9%. That being said, with the advent of fake news, brand safety remains a critical issue for advertisers, highlighting the need for a solution to protect brand reputations.</p> <h3>One in nine online visits were made to news and media sites in 2016</h3> <p>Hitwise suggests that there’s been a shift in the British public’s media consumption, predicted to be due to the impact of today’s political landscape. </p> <p>Data shows that, as well as consuming more news across broader sources, people are now beginning to question the validity of news providers and changing their preferences of media titles as a result. One in nine visits online were made to news and media sites in 2016 compared to 1 in 10 visits in 2015.</p> <p>Articles focusing on Trump and Brexit accounted for five out of the top 10 read articles in January and February 2017. Meanwhile, in the month before and after Trump’s inauguration, left-leaning newspapers such as the Guardian and The Independent gained readers from traditional tabloids, such as The Sun, Express and Daily Mail.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5157/Hitwise_1.png" alt="" width="510" height="464"></p> <h3>Consumers increasingly favouring mobile loyalty programs</h3> <p>The 2017 <a href="http://www.vibes.com/resources/2017-uk-mobile-consumer-report/" target="_blank">Mobile Consumer Report</a> from Vibes highlights a link between digital loyalty programs and greater consumer loyalty.</p> <p>Research shows that 70% of consumers would have a more positive opinion of a brand if it allowed them to save a loyalty card in their smartphone. Over one-third of people are said to store information from brands in a mobile wallet such as Apple Wallet and Android Pay.</p> <p>83% of smartphone users also say that receiving surprise rewards, exclusive content and special birthday or anniversary messaging would have a positive impact on their brand loyalty overall.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5161/Mobile_Consumer_report.jpg" alt="" width="763" height="756"></p> <h3>Mobile consumers in emerging markets are more intolerant of bad user experiences</h3> <p>A new report by <a href="http://wearefetch.com/cms/content/media/2015/12/Fetch-Global-Mobile-Consumer-Survey.pdf" target="_blank">Fetch</a> suggests that brands should consider shifting their mobile advertising focus to emerging markets, as levels of engagement rapidly increase.</p> <p>According to research, 31% of users in emerging markets define themselves as mobile-first, compared to 15% in Europe and 18% in North America.</p> <p>Similarly, where 66% of European consumers claim to access social media every hour, this rises to 72% amongst emerging markets.</p> <p>Lastly, mobile-first consumers in emerging markets are more intolerant of bad <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/user-experience-and-interaction-design-for-mobile-and-web/">mobile web experiences</a>, with 84% saying they would leave a mobile website if it loaded slowly, compared to 69% in Europe and 75% in North America.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5160/Fetch_mobile_consumer.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="280"></p> <h3>62% of consumers will stick to premium if prices rise post-Brexit</h3> <p>New findings from Centre for Retail Research and Rakuten Marketing suggest that consumers have differing views of how the referendum result will affect prices in the UK.</p> <p>A survey of 1000 consumers across the UK found that, over the next six months, 37% of people are sure they will be better off, while 40% think they will be worse off.</p> <p>Regardless, the survey also found that shoppers will not stop purchasing premium products if prices have to rise as a result of Brexit. If faced with a price increase of up to 10%, only 6% of Brits claim they would refuse to buy the item, while 62% would buy the premium brand anyway.</p> <p>There does seem to be a tipping point, however, with a 15% price increase expected to make 21% of shoppers switch to a cheaper brand.</p> <h3>UK companies unprepared for business pitching</h3> <p>Research from <a href="http://buffalo7.co.uk/uk-companies-are-not-prepared-for-pitching/" target="_blank">Buffalo7</a> has found that the majority of UK companies are not properly prepared to win new business pitches.</p> <p>From a survey of industry professionals, 61% of respondents said their companies did not employ any staff with slide-deck design expertise. In contrast, 60% wished their companies did have such expertise in-house, with 62% believing it would help their companies to win more pitches. </p> <p>Despite this recognition, a whopping 75% of respondents said that that their companies do not provide any formal training for delivering pitches.</p> <p>Perhaps unsurprisingly, the survey also found that 76% of companies have pitched for business in the last 12 months, but that 54% are losing half or more of the pitches they contest.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5159/Buffalo7.jpg" alt="" width="721" height="458"></p> <h3>YouTube is number one for consumer positivity</h3> <p>According to a new study from Trinity McQueen, YouTube tops the list of media brands that people feel the most positively about.</p> <p>In a survey of ‘unbound consumers’ - people who reject scheduled media for on-demand services -  21% cited that they feel positively about YouTube, followed by 20% feeling positive towards the BBC and 16% about Netflix. </p> <p>New content appears to be a key factor in a media brand’s popularity, with 46% of unbound audiences most likely to believe YouTube always has new content, while 35% saying the same about the BBC.</p> <p>Lastly, 41% of unbound audiences feel that Facebook offers the most personalised experience, while 41% thinks YouTube offers the best overall online experience.</p> <h3>Car brands see Instagram follower growth of 20% in two months</h3> <p>A new study by <a href="https://www.quintly.com/blog/2017/03/the-10-most-liked-uk-brands-on-instagram/" target="_blank">Quintly</a> has revealed that five out of the top ten most-liked UK brands on Instagram are car manufacturers. </p> <p>What’s more, they all had a follower growth of at least 20% in the period of October to December 2016.</p> <p>Other analysis shows that Jaguar had the most successful post in terms of the number of likes, with a post showing the model F-Type garnering over 110,000 likes. </p> <p>This is just one example of the popularity of luxury brands on Instagram, which is also reflected by the success of other big brands like Burberry and Rolls Royce.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5154/Jaguar.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="489"></p> <h3>Mobile accounts for more than 60% of digital minutes in global markets</h3> <p>According comScore’s <a href="http://www.comscore.com/Insights/Presentations-and-Whitepapers/2017/Mobiles-Hierarchy-of-Needs?cs_edgescape_cc=GB" target="_blank">Mobile Hierarchy of Needs</a> report, mobile devices now account for a majority of consumers' digital minutes, with most of that time spent in apps.</p> <p>The growing share of consumer time claimed by mobile devices accounted for more than 60% of all digital minutes in nine major markets, rising to 91% in the case of Indonesia.</p> <p>Apps represented more than 80% of mobile minutes in all markets studied, rising to 99% in the case of China.</p> <p>The top apps are no surprise, with WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67490-10-things-you-didn-t-know-about-wechat/">WeChat</a>, QQ Instant Messenger and Line showing the popularity of messaging apps</p> <h3>63% of consumers believe the media needs more regulation</h3> <p>A new report by Network Research shows that public trust in the reliability of media information has declined significantly in the last 12 months, with 63% of people now believing that media outlets need more regulation.</p> <p>In a survey of 1,000 UK adults, the study also found that 39.5% of people feel the government has significant influence on the media agenda, while 32% feel that businesses do.</p> <p>Almost half of the public are suspicious they may have seen or read fake news recently, with 75% subsequently trusting publications to a lesser extent. 83% of people also believe there should be greater penalties for reporting fabricated news.</p>