But what does a UX design agency actually do?
In a nutshell, a UX design agency makes your website more enjoyable to use. They can do that with a lot of different methods, though. Most of the time, a UX design agency will use five main strategies to make your site more enjoyable for visitors.
"Enjoyable" could mean making your navigation more intuitive, adding elements to high-traffic pages, and adding interactive content – and that's just to start. But the best UX design agencies will walk you through the usability process from start to finish. In this case, the "start" is building your website.
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1. Web design
Web design is the first step in creating any website.
A UX agency will create a website for you based on your needs and requests, as well as modern trends that help provide users with an improved experience.
That could include concepts like infinite scrolling, drop-down navigation menus, responsive design, and more. These ideas are considered "modern" because they create sleek, attractive websites that help users find what they want. In other words, they're intuitive.
Since a UX agency concentrates on usability and design, this is the perfect way for them to approach a new website. This comes with another advantage, too — search engines love intuitive websites.
When you make a website that's good for the user, it's also good for that website's SEO. Google will notice that users click to your site and spend more time on your pages than they do on your competitors' sites. Then, their algorithm can adjust the rankings for your site in search results accordingly.
So a well-made website doesn't just help your users find the information they want — it also helps Google rank you better in search engines. The end result is a well-made, intuitive website that Google will want to recommend to searchers – and a great start to your company's online presence. But web design is just the beginning.
If you really want your website to help your business grow, you'll need web development next.
Web development refers to the back-end coding and architecture that makes your site function properly.
A good UX agency will have experienced web developers that can add the functionality you need to your site. That could be advanced navigation, interactives, or even code that helps search engines understand your site better.
Interactives are coded pieces of content that allow users to change certain criteria to get results specific to them. These include calculators, calendars, and other pieces that permit user input.
Interactives are excellent pieces of content to use when you want to provide some kind of practical value to your users. They work best when they solve a problem for someone for free, showing them that you care about their pain points and — even better — how customers can solve them.
So instead of feeling like they're reading an encyclopedia, your visitors can engage with your site and get a more accurate sense of what it would be like to partner with your company. This interaction may be digital, but it's still more interesting than reading walls of text off of their screen.
These additions keep your users on your site for much longer times than text-only content. That makes them feel more confident in you, which then encourages them to convert into paying customers.
That goes a long way, especially for people who are new to your industry or have never heard of your company before.
It's almost a guarantee that they'll remember your brand later since you're the company that helped them with a problem they wanted to solve.
3. Project management
Project management is the process of overseeing new tasks through conception, development, and production. UX agencies incorporate this into their plans by hiring strategists who have experience in a certain field.
That could be web design, web development, Internet marketing, interactive creation, and any other service they offer. Regardless of what you want to accomplish, an experienced project manager will be able to walk you through the steps you need to accomplish it.
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This is essential to making sure that your end result meets your goals and expectations. No matter what they take on, they should be able to walk with you through every step, overcome every obstacle, and get the results you need.
Moreover, they should be able to report the results of what they've done to make sure you know everything you need to justify your investment in the first place. In fact, the last two points on this page are going to deal with essential parts of a project management system.
After a UX agency has designed something for you from start to finish, they'll enter these next two phases.
Troubleshooting — also called "testing" or "beta testing" — is the practice of testing a new product to make sure it works as intended.
This is an essential step for everything a UX agency does for you, whether that's designing a new website from scratch or creating a high-functioning interactive for one of your pages.
This process involves someone trying to "break" the product that was created to discover where its faults lie. Even when a product is designed with skill and careful management, there can still be bugs in its execution.
Programmers sometimes call this "the ghost in the machine," referring to the unpredictable nature of coding. Essentially, you can do everything right on your first try, and it could still behave in unexpected ways.
Most of the time, those "unexpected ways" are inefficiencies or fatal errors that cause a product not to work. The sooner a UX agency can find those errors, the sooner they can fix them to create a better product.
This process can take time — sometimes as long as managing the project itself — but the results are worth the time, money, and effort.
Once everything is done, you can launch your new site with confidence that it will work flawlessly. That's great for building trust with website visitors. It creates a powerful, positive first impression, no matter who's looking at your site.
Even so, there's still one more job of a UX design agency before they're done.
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the process of increasing the percentage of your website's traffic that converts into paying customers.
This is different from troubleshooting because CRO involves how well something works mechanically — it's concerned with getting a higher percentage of site visitors to take action towards becoming customers.
So CRO involves selecting individual elements of your site, creating several versions of that element, and testing them to see which works best at encouraging visitors to click and convert.
Your UX agency may also use other tests and processes that increase the efficiency of your pages. Then, this is typically the end of the road for a UX project. But as your site continues to generate conversions, customers, and revenue, your partnership can pay off for years to come.
WebFX is your UX partner
Do you want to make your site more enjoyable for your visitors, and more profitable for your company?
WebFX can help.
We have experienced teams of web designers, developers, and UX experts who know how to build effective sites, and get the most value out of each page.
We've worked wonders for clients in a variety of industries, and we want to do the same for you.
Contact us today to start giving your customers the best experience possible!