Designing an application for any large-scale enterprise is surely a big deal. Such an opportunity undoubtedly comes with great challenges.
Enterprise applications are completely different from their consumer counterparts. There are more users, money, resources, and problems involved.
A well-established enterprise is engaged in diverse operations. So, your application will have to serve a variety of use cases without compromising on user experience. Which is why you need to have a powerful UX design.
Frictionless UX design has the potential of raising customer conversion rates up to 400% – Designers
Enterprises have high expectations when it comes to the UX design of the application. They don’t have the time to struggle through the complexities of the app. Enterprises expect a simple, clutter-free yet intuitive application that’s easy to use.
User experience encompasses all aspects of the end-users interaction with the company, its services, and its products – Nielson Norman Group
Clear the confusion – UX is not UI
The line from where UX stops and UI begins is often blurred. People make the mistake of placing them together in a single term, UI/UX design, which results in great confusion.
In layman terms, UI (User Interface), focuses on the visual elements that enable people to interact with the app. While UX (User Experience) is about that ‘interaction’; it focuses on creating pain-free and enjoyable experiences.
UX is a much broader term that includes UI.
UX makes interfaces useful while on the other hand, UI makes interfaces visually appealing.
However, both walk parallelly, they are interrelated and essential for an app’s success. You mess up with one, and you’ll end up being in trouble.
Walmart witnessed a sharp decline in conversion rate when site load time increased from 1 to 4 seconds. For every one percent improvement, they experienced an up to 2% increase in conversions.
Even Shopzilla increased revenue by 12% and page views by 25% when they reduced the average page load time from 6 to 1.2 seconds.
For great customer satisfaction, both UI and UX need to be perfectly aligned and work in harmony.
Well, combining these two terms isn’t the only mistake that developers make when it comes to UX design. There are many more mistakes that affect the user experience which you will read in the next point.
Be careful – The common UX mistakes while designing enterprise apps
Why will the enterprise spend its dollars on an app that’s convoluted, confusing and seems like a can of worms instead of a helping hand?
Enterprises invest in an app for making the work of their employees easier. But sadly, due to many UX design errors, enterprises end up having many unpleasant experiences with an application.
As the next-gen digital company with over a decade of experience in delivering 200+ digital products, we’ve worked with customers from various industries. Many customers have shared experiences of working with flawed enterprise applications with us and how it affected their business.
Such negative experiences spread like wildfire and even affect the brand reputation of the company that designed the enterprise app.
13% of customers tell 20 people or more about the negative experience they’ve had with a company. – Status lab
These bad experiences are the repercussions of mistakes made while designing the UX. So, you need to be careful and avoid such mistakes.
Here are the most common enterprise application mistakes that need your attention:
1. Designing for the buyer, not user
Buyers aren’t necessarily the end-users. So, do not simply assume and commence designing. The employees for whom the application was purchased won’t use it if they find it complicated.
Most of the enterprise applications are designed without consulting the users and understanding their needs. Failing to build the app without keeping the end-user in mind leads to a disconnect between the application and the person using it.
Therefore, enquire, who all are going to use the application and what are their requirements. Ensure that the buyer has analyzed the needs of the user before providing specifications for designing the application.
2. Extravagance in innovation
It might be enticing to show your proficiency through innovation to an enterprise. But you can’t cross the line here by going overboard with innovation.
Too much innovation might require the user to put in more effort and time to navigate.
Keep it simple.
For instance –
The number of clicks required to execute command can be reduced or you can add drop-down boxes to cut down scrolling time. Try to make things as easy as possible for your end-users so that they enjoy working with your enterprise application.
3. Displaying everything on a single screen
Yes, there is a lot of information and features that you need to put in an enterprise app. However, this task needs to be handled tactfully, or else you’ll end up cluttering the screen.
- Only the most important data should be displayed on the screen.
- Use tabs to split the information as per the theme of the subject.
- Avoid long lines and tiny text.
- Group related metrics.
- Use sell-explanatory and understandable labels for the user.
An enterprise application is used by multiple users for different purposes. Therefore, try to offer the flexibility of customization so that users can add or edit the fields as per their requirements.
Benefits of a robust UX design for enterprise application
Neglecting the UX details leads to a sloppy application that annoys the users; resulting in app failure. Which no company wants. So, a lot of importance is given to an application’s UX design.
Building a powerful UX design has many benefits:
1. More opportunities
Good user experience is the best advertisement of all.
Well, users having a good experience with an application often share their positive experience with others. It stimulates positive word of mouth. Such happy clients even give you referrals so you can easily reach potential buyers without investing much time, money or resources.
2. Customer retention
If a person enjoys using your application (provided they have a pleasant experience) they will stick with you and keep coming back in the future.
In this highly competitive business world, customer retention is very essential. It is important to have a customer base who is loyal and chooses you over the competitors.
3. Decreases customer service and support cost
A well-designed application wouldn’t need much guidance. A smart application is easy to use and puts less stress on the employees as well as on the bottom line.
Problems arise when the application is poorly designed. This is when the customer requires help and you’ll have to hire more customer support staff. So rather than investing in hiring new employees, it is better to invest time in designing UX that delights users.
The UX design checklist for enterprise application
Past is the best teacher. We’ve not only interacted with clients who have invested in the wrong UX in the past but also heard positive feedback for our application. As one of the Inc 5000 companies, we know what goes into designing an app that provides a “wow” user experience. Based on what we’ve seen in our journey as a next-gen digital company, here are the vital things you shouldn’t miss while designing enterprise applications.
1. Take a design decision like you make a business decision
Aren’t you extra cautious while taking a business decision? The same attitude is required while making design decisions for the enterprise app.
This is important because the design of your application will have a direct impact on productivity.
Good designs encourage users to engage with the application and make the most of it. So, take every step wisely. Anticipate what will attract your end-users and accordingly take the design decisions.
2. Pay attention to wireframing
Wireframing is an essential part of the UX process. It helps in planning what elements will exist on a specific screen of the application and how users will interact with them.
You get a direction for moving forward. The unnecessary things can be eliminated at the right time to avoid unnecessary complications later. So, brainstorm with your team and take enough time to create this wireframe.
Discuss the wireframe with the customers and take their feedback.
Yes, wireframes are complicated for the clients to conceptualize as it has no visuals and it’s difficult to convey everything on a piece of paper.
Which is why you need to have a strong presentation, explaining every part of the wireframe. It is easier to make changes in this wireframe stage rather than changing things in the final mockup with many visuals.
3. Smart iteration
Iteration is essential for eliminating usability flaws to ensure powerful results. An application gets better with each iteration. So, the designer tries to reach that level of perfection through continuous iterations. Everyone wants a flawless and perfect application.
However, the truth is there is no perfect design. Even after 20 iterations, the enterprise application won’t seem perfect. There will be something lacking.
You end up getting stuck in a cycle.
For instance, you identify the end-users’ needs and have ideas for meeting them.
You develop a prototype and then test that prototype for seeing if it meets the needs in the best possible way. Then you pick what you’ve learned from testing and amend the designs accordingly. Following that you end up creating a new prototype and commence the process all over again until you are satisfied. And the cycle goes on.
So, you need to know when to draw the line and limit this iteration. Think of an ideal outcome and try to achieve it with the smallest number of iterations. It is essential to iterate quickly. Don’t do hard work do smart work.
Experience is everything
An enterprise app’s success is closely related to the success of its end-users. As Michael Leboeuf rightly said, “A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all”. Your app should ease the life of the users and make a good impression on them. So, build a simple yet powerful app that meets the expectation of the enterprises and delivers utmost satisfaction.
This is what we did at Rapidops. We created a highly intuitive solution – Salesmate CRM for enterprises and focused on delivering excellent user experience. Salesmate CRM has become a preferred choice of businesses due to its simple interface and well-designed UX.
For its advanced capabilities and excellent functionalities, Salesmate CRM was recognized as the Frontrunner 2018 leader for CRM software by SoftwareAdvice.
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I write about businesses and their loopholes. So if you are reading my articles, then you will understand that I like to help out start-ups and entrepreneurs who want to get an insight into streamlining their business process. When I am not writing anything related to business, I love reading and writing quotes that inspire people to improve their way of living.