Any brand or company that wants to optimize its product will turn to product experience and user experience as an indication of how good its product is.
These two approaches might seem quite similar, but each has a different focus. They are both important to consider when designing a product, as the way a customer experiences what you offer is incredibly important.
This guide explains both product experience and user experience, why each is so important, how they should be managed, and how they differ from one another. Read on!
What is Product Experience?
Product experience (PX) refers to the experience a customer has when using or interacting with your product. This will be what the customer experiences with your brand as a whole, from start to finish.
When a customer gets to experience your product and all its features, it allows them to see the benefits and value that it brings to them. For example, if a customer is navigating a software system, they will want to see that it is easy to work through and user-friendly at every step.
Why is PX important?
There is much competition in the software market, and if customers are not happy with your product, they have a host of other options to choose from and to switch to.
Product experience is important to master so that you do not lose customers to competitors. Customers look beyond the basics and may have high expectations for your product. You need to meet their needs and provide unmatched value.
Product experience can help you achieve different goals.
Firstly, it improves overall customer satisfaction. By ironing out design issues and solving the challenges that customers face, they will have a more personalized product they will enjoy using.
Secondly, a great product experience retains customers over a long period. If customers have a good experience, they won’t have sufficient reason to switch to another provider. The longer you retain a customer, the less likely they are to jump ship, so you end up with a loyal customer base over time.
Finally, you can expect increased sales and income. A loyal customer base will keep consistent revenue coming through, and build the reputation of your brand so that new customers stream in.
How to Manage the Product Experience
To analyze how customers experience your product, as well as any pain points they might have, you need to monitor the product experience in various ways.
One of the best ways to find out how a customer feels about your product is simply to ask them to provide feedback on it. This allows the customer to provide their honest opinion about what they like about the product, and more importantly, the difficulties that they experience.
This helps you pinpoint the elements that need fixing, and then go on to make those fixes.
You can gather this feedback with tools like surveys, customer interviews, testing, and so on. This should be a continuous practice so that you are constantly changing the product to adapt to customer needs.
Doing this will also show the customer that you value their feedback, which is likely to keep them loyal to your brand.
With the incredible innovation of tracking technology, you can monitor exactly how customers are interacting with and experiencing your product.
Looking at metrics and analytics helps you to track user behavior, retention, sales, and more. This provides a map of how your customers use your product and highlights any issues they may face.
Using this data, you can tweak the product accordingly to offer the optimal product experience to your customers.
If you want customers to continue to use your product for a long time, engagement is a crucial area for success.
The key is to encourage users to try and regularly use the features available. This means that you need to ensure that the features on offer are useful and easy to navigate.
It also requires continuous evaluation of your software product’s features. You’ll need to make adjustments where necessary and adapt to the complex and ever-evolving needs of your customers.
Sharing new updates and features available, along with an onboarding experience that shows users how to navigate these, is a good way to keep them engaged.
What is User Experience?
User experience (UX) refers to the overall experience of a customer when using a product, particularly the way they feel and how they react to it. This can be studied right from the beginning to the end: from your sales demo to the actual product purchase.
UX focuses on the emotions and psychology linked to the customer experience. For example, if a customer feels frustrated or confused by a product, it means that changes need to be implemented. On the other hand, if they feel a sense of ease and comfort during the experience, it indicates a good product design.
Why is the User Experience Important?
User experience looks at how your customers feel about your product, which in turn impacts the likelihood of them staying loyal to the brand instead of switching to another.
This allows you to make any changes necessary, and personalize your products accordingly. This way you can make the user experience as pleasant and efficient as possible.
A positive user experience results in several favorable outcomes.
Firstly, it maintains the loyalty of existing customers as it keeps up with their needs and allows for tweaks to be made when necessary.
Secondly, it improves customer satisfaction. This not only contributes to customer loyalty but also helps to bring in new customers and increase overall revenue with an established reputation in the market.
It also lets your brand stand out among the crowd of competitors, as a great UX will leave a lasting impression.
How to Manage the User Experience
Define Target Audience
Before establishing an ideal user experience, it is vital to understand who your target audience is.
This involves doing detailed research on customer demographics, behaviors, interests, and so on. Narrow down this research to ascertain who your average customer is, and how they might interact with the product on offer.
This helps to determine customer needs, and will give you the insight needed to design a UX that meets these needs.
Conducting extensive market research will allow you to narrow down the needs and experiences of customers, existing and potential.
Consider monitoring user reviews, conducting surveys, or chatting with the users themselves. Get an idea of the general feeling around the product, and then use this useful information to add features, remove unnecessary elements, and make overall improvements.
Measuring the success and user experience of your product is most accurately done with data and metrics. These are fairly easy to track nowadays.
Analyze how users interact with your product and use this as guidance in figuring out what they enjoy versus what they struggle with.
This data is incredibly valuable and should be monitored regularly if you are to keep updated with the user experience.
If a product is new, or you are adding new features to an existing product, it is good practice to create a prototype of sorts that allows you to test it out on customers.
This can be done with a select group of loyal customers, providing them with an incentive to try out the product and provide constructive feedback about how it works for them. Doing this before launching a product allows you to iron out any major or minor issues before you make it available to customers.
Across the board, feedback is crucial. Using methods like interviews, surveys, polls, forms, and so on, you can get direct data from customers about their user experience.
This should be done consistently, and not only when you want to add a new feature. Providing a permanent place where customers are encouraged to give constant feedback means that you are always in the loop regarding user needs and challenges.
How does the product experience differ from the user experience?
While the two might seem very similar, the product experience does differ from the user experience.
Companies should note the differences, and prioritize both as separate channels to optimize customer satisfaction.
Product experience focuses on the entire customer experience with your brand’s products, whereas the user experience focuses on how the customer experiences a particular product.
PX is more concerned with how a user finds the whole navigation process of your product, from the major features down to the minor elements. This determines the ease of use and can show whether your product is suited to customer needs.
UX focuses on the way the customer feels or thinks when using your product. This looks at whether the design and setup cause a negative reaction like frustration or confusion, or a positive reaction like comfort and relief.
Customers and their opinions are valuable in any company. After all, customer satisfaction is what ultimately leads to sales, success, and increased revenue.
Ensure that you optimize both product experience, which tells you how the customer can navigate the entire product offering, as well as user experience, which focuses on how customers feel and react to your product.
These are two similar concepts, but each has a distinctive focus. Both are equally important to analyze and prioritize.
Product demos are a fantastic way to improve both the product and user experience. Contact Saleo to see how we can help you create captivating product demos.