On a chilly Winter’s day, four years ago, a CTO approached us for help.
Their once thriving platform was on a steady decline. After years of strong adoption and revenue growth, attrition was increasing while profit margins were decreasing. No one on their team could figure out why.
With their jobs on the line, they needed a Hail Mary.
Luckily, diagnosing the stalling growth took less than two weeks. Thanks to our proven protocol, we quickly pinpointed 3 detrimental software issues.
A few months later, the app was back on track, everyone’s positions intact.
So what caused the near-catastrophe, you ask? A deprecating and disjointed user experience (UX).
Rather than delighting their customer base, rapid feature expansion was confusing and frustrating users.
Fortunately, you can safeguard your organization against these oversights, if you know what to watch for.
Here are 3 little known UX pitfalls you’ll want to tackle this year:
Pitfall #1 – Friction is causing churn
Are loyal users abandoning your platform?
Too much friction may be to blame. At it’s core, friction is another name for bad UX, which may be causing users to commit errors because they:
- Don’t understand the app
- Are not utilizing it correctly
- Cannot complete required tasks
While building new technology, you are often warned about, “friction killing the customer experience.” Unfortunately, identifying these sticking points post-launch can be difficult without seasoned designers who understand your customers and their user journey.
To prevent a potential downturn, coach your product design team to spot and address red flags early.
How To Spot This Pitfall
- Customers regularly abandon or try to circumvent key workflows
- 1-2 parts of your product are responsible for most of the support requests
How To Fix It
Plan & budget for:
- Regular UX assessments & improvement
- Routinely gather user feedback and analytics with tools like Mixpanel and Maze.
Pitfall #2 – Errors are eating into your margins
Years ago, a series A funded client was using a custom-built application to power a new service offering.
The app itself “worked” fine, but the UX was a mess. The staff needed workarounds to get even basic tasks done. As a result, mistakes were rampant and the cost of frequent manual revisions cut into profit margins.
With leadership dubious about the division’s scalability, it was heading for the chopping block.
Fortunately, this story has a happy ending.
After guiding the client through our Define & Design framework to improve their UX, the startup saw a 20% increase in revenue over the next 6 months. Not only was their staff happier, but they could now complete more work, faster, and more accurately.
Today, it is one of the most successful lines of business at the organization.
How To Spot This Pitfall
- Staff is struggling to complete simple internal tasks, accurately
- Too much time spent revisiting tasks
How To Fix It:
- Redesign your internal platform’s UX to drive efficiency, reduce errors, & increase profitability.
Pitfall #3 – Top talent is being wasted on repetitive tasks
Are your high-performers stuck doing mundane tasks instead of high-value work?
Picture this: Your business is booming, so you hire an all-star finance team. They’re bright, motivated, and ready to hit the ground running, but then, reality hits: your rudimentary accounting system wasn’t built to scale.
Instead of performing strategic work, your team is consumed by copying and pasting from excel spreadsheets to keep the business running.
How To Recognize:
- Your top performers spend more time on simple, but critical manual tasks instead of the strategic work they were hired for.
How To Fix It:
- Leverage off-the-shelf solutions to automate work
- Build internal tooling to streamline core business functions
The Bottom Line
Even thriving products aren’t immune from crumbling UX.
The only way to dodge potential pitfalls is by elongating your product roadmap to include regular UX assessments & improvements.
Your customers and your reputation will thank you.
If you want to lower overhead, increase stability, or avoid customer churn, we can help with our Big Bite Define & Design Package.
See you next time,
Carlos & Richard