3 Myths People Believe About User Experience (But Shouldn’t)

[24]7.ai | May 14, 2015

Throughout history we’ve fallen for myths. We tend to cling to our notions, at least until we are proven wrong by empirical evidence. Therein lies the purpose of this post: to debunk commonly held misconceptions about the user experience.

Myth #1: Web design is all about making websites look pretty

You should never sacrifice functionality over style when it comes to your website.

Having a beautiful site design certainly gives you one leg up, but you shouldn’t solely focus on improving the visual design of your site. The law of diminishing return certainly applies here; as long as your site looks polished, professional and well maintained, adding more graphical bells and whistles will do little to enhance the user experience.

A well-designed website not only needs to look good, it also needs to communicate clearly and be easy to navigate. Allowing people to quickly find the answers to their questions should be your #1 priority.

Myth #2: Site search is enough to resolve visitors’ questions

While site search can work well in helping people locate the information that they are looking for, it is hardly the most user-friendly tool.

The keyword-based search method will often yield irrelevant content. The worst part is, once the user begins the search, it is then up to them to scroll through the list of queries to find one that best matches their intent. In other words, they do all the hard work. That must be a frustrating experience for visitors, who might leave if they fail to find what they need before their patience runs out.

Virtual agents on the other hand can understand natural language and deliver one accurate answer, reducing customer effort significantly. More on that later on.

Myth #3: UX testing is too expensive!

The rationale here is that usability testing — when done properly —can be very time consuming and costly. People find it hard to establish a direct causal relationship between usability testing and the long term benefits to the business, so they avoid it.

Don’t despair, there are some ways to conduct UX testing when your budget is limited:

The following tips are from The Handbook of Usability Testing:

  • Perform only the testing needed to inform your design, and no more
  • Follow classical testing methodology, but forego the lab. Go into the field instead and conduct sessions in cafes, malls, trade shows, and anywhere else users might be.

Additionally, there are websites like loop11 and TryMyUI that offer usability testing tools at a low cost.

Bonus Myth: Digital self-service? Nobody cares!

That can’t be further away from the truth. In fact, [24]7.ai alone has deployed over 450 virtual agents in large and well-established companies in the last few years.

Brendan Witcher, an analyst from the research firm Forrester says it best, “As consumer demand grows for consistent, easy-to-find solutions across channels and screens, a strong business case emerges for adding virtual agents to the customer’s journey.” Consumers are indeed using self-service more and more, as indicated by statistics that show a usage increase from 67% in 2012 to 76% in 2014.

Lose the Myths — Learn the Facts

Your customers are online, now, asking questions. Learn more about how [24]7 Virtual Agent software can help your organization improve the user experience and cut costs. Book a DEMO today with one of our sales specialists.