What Is UX Strategy & Why It Matters?

Julian Wallis
11 min read
UX Strategy

The user always comes first! This is the mindset that every UX designer should live by, and they are right to do so. But, a business shouldn’t just consider their users during the design phase of a project but also when strategising, researching and planning out the user’s journey interacting with the product.

In our ever-connected world, UX design is becoming a lucrative competitive advantage and an integral necessity for customer retention and satisfaction. Of course, users want products that are useful, valuable, helpful and amazingly designed. But designing usable products doesn’t happen by accident. 

Thorough research, planning and background analysis are required before any design work can begin. So think about it for a second here, how will you design to solve a customer’s pain points if you haven’t spent enough time researching and learning about your customers in the first place?

This is precisely where UX strategy fits into the picture. UX strategy or UX design strategy helps businesses create the perfect roadmap to build products that people will love and come back to with joy on their faces when they use them. 

It’s important to note that users determine your product’s success; they are its proverbial backbone. This is why satisfying and delighting users with your product should be your primary goal when creating a UX strategy roadmap.

Your UX strategy is the process you undertake to make better design decisions and improve your user’s experience interacting with your products. Many businesses don’t realise the impact investing in a proper UX strategy can have, but if you want to stay ahead of your competition, then this is something you must consider.

This post will explain UX strategy and why it’s vital for your business. We’ll also share tips on creating the best UX strategy roadmap for your business. So, without any further ado, let’s get started!

What Is UX Strategy? 🤓🗓️

Let’s start with the obvious question first, what is UX strategy? There are many ways to define UX strategy, but it’s best to start with a common misconception. 

UX strategy is not UX design. This may come off as a slight surprise to some, but these are two completely different processes despite falling under the common umbrella of user experience.

UX design means creating something that solves customers’ pain points and provides value to make their lives easier. UX strategy, on the other hand, involves creating a roadmap before you begin designing the product. So, UX strategy is what you do before UX design.

With that out of the way, let’s define UX strategy properly. A UX strategy is a detailed document that includes information about the current situation and a high-level roadmap for achieving the business’s UX goals.

Here’s an example, let’s say that your users are leaving your website reasonably quickly without interacting much. You analyse and identify several UX issues, such as lack of device responsiveness compatibility, poor site speed, and too many confusing CTAs. The information you gather here will be a major part of your UX strategy process. The insights gathered will therefore be forwarded to your designers to address by implementing required UX improvements on the website.

UX strategy is usually developed with information from mainly three primary sources:

  • Stakeholders – Your customers and your team
  • Information that you extract by analysing your industry and customer interactions
  • Anticipated qualities and outcomes of your UX endeavour – features, functionalities, and specific improvements

Pre-requisites For A Successful UX Strategy 🤔

Creating a successful UX strategy for your business isn’t easy. It requires thoughtful planning and collaboration between your teams to provide solutions that meet customer needs and feelings. But with the correct prerequisites in place, you can ensure your strategy is on track for success. Here are four essential qualities to consider before getting started.

Alignment of company and product vision 🤗

Your product should be aligned with your long-term business strategy. Essentially, you want your ideal customer to interact with your offerings in a way that enables you to get a step closer to achieving your business goals.

Strive for Innovation 🖥️

The only constant in this digital world is that it is constantly evolving. Thus, as a business, you need to stay ahead of the competition by embracing new technologies and adopting innovative and intuitive approaches to improve how customers experience your products.

To ensure you’re always one step ahead of your competitors with your UX strategy, you need to get a few fundamentals right – the UX design tool, your team, and your UX planning, analysis and research processes.

Research and background study of your customers 🌐

Research and planning are the foundation of UX strategy. The great thing about developing a fantastic UX strategy is that if done correctly, you get the chance to understand what your users want thoroughly. If you are meticulous in your UX research process, your strategy and subsequent designs are bound to become roaring successes.

Design for your users 👨‍💻

We go back to the foundation of UX design – it’s all about the user. If you want to design a website or app that your customers will enjoy using, they need to be at the front and centre of everything you do while creating it.

Why is UX Strategy Important? 😮

So far, we’ve established what UX strategy is and what is required to become successful with your UX design strategy. Now, let’s delve into the importance of strategising user experience.

In short, UX strategy is vital because it helps you to determine what you want your end goal to be and how you can get there. 

The UX strategy process involves research, planning, and execution tailored to your specific product or service, meeting the requirements of your particular user segment. 

Thus, because of all the analysis and background research that goes into it, UX strategy can help you avoid common UX pitfalls, such as copy that’s difficult to read or navigate, buttons that are confusing or out of place, and features that are hard to use or unnecessary. 

By having a UX strategy in place, you can ensure that your product or service is designed to meet your users’ needs. In addition, a UX strategy can help you save time and money by providing that your product is designed correctly from the start.

Notably, a well-defined and detailed UX strategy helps to guide the entire team to achieve the shared vision of the stakeholders and keeps everyone on the same page. It will tie stakeholders’ expectations, requirements, and dreams together and offer you a bird’s eye view to keep everyone aligned on the product direction.

When aligned with the right business strategy, UX strategy can ultimately differentiate between a product’s success and failure. The result of a successful UX strategy is a blueprint that will help you successfully develop and design a product that will delight your customers and turn them into brand advocates.

Where Do Businesses Go Wrong With Their UX Strategy? 🤦

Rushing into a UX strategy process without prior knowledge or enough background work is a common mistake most businesses make when starting this journey.

It’s a risky approach as mishaps in the initial strategy phase will eventually lead to inevitable product failure. You’ll repeatedly pay for it throughout the project lifecycle and even after!

Ultimately, a rushed, poorly executed UX strategy will lead to disgruntled customer reactions, ambiguous product experiences, and unpleasant disruption from competitors. A loss-loss situation in all accounts.

Our Tips For Creating An Effective UX Strategy 🤩

  • Always make sure users are the focus when setting UX strategy goals. A good UX strategy aims to ensure your company’s vision aligns with user-centric endeavours that enrich your user’s interaction with your products.
  • Users come first, and profits come after. So while we don’t deny that businesses have to make money to scale and become sustainable, it is equally essential for companies to design products with the users at the forefront. 

Cutting corners, taking shortcuts to save money and compromising on product quality and user experience will lead to financial losses in the long run. You might save a little now but will have to pay much more later.

  • Create a long-term UX roadmap. We suggest utilising interviews and testing with internal and external stakeholders to create a long-term roadmap for your company’s product design and user experience.
  • Your UX goals must be specific and realistic. For example, do you want to make your website easier to navigate or perhaps improve page speed? Whatever your UX goals are, they must be tied to your customer’s pain points and frustrations. Furthermore, they must be realistic and within the means of your business and technical team.
  • It’s also essential to understand the customer-product relationship. To create a successful UX strategy, you need to define the specific characteristics and scenarios in which your product will be involved. This relates to the Who, What, When, Where, and Why of your offering. In our opinion, the more detail you get on your user and their thought process, the better it will be for your designers to empathise and create solutions truly catered to your customer’s wants and needs.
  • UX Strategy is an ongoing process. Finally, a UX strategy is not merely a defined phase in a project. Instead, It’s an ongoing organisational process that you must continually work on to improve your customer’s experience with your brand. You’ll have to adapt to several internal and external circumstances, such as algorithmic updates and changing customer demands, and your UX strategy needs to update accordingly.

How To Plan A UX Strategy Roadmap? 🙋📒

Before we wrap up, let’s discuss how you can create a UX strategy roadmap. The first step is to set your UX goals. What are your UX objectives? Once you have your objectives defined, the next step is to identify the key steps you’ll need to take to achieve those objectives. These key steps will form the basis of your UX roadmap. 

Finally, once your roadmap is defined, it’s essential to communicate it to your team and stakeholders. A UX roadmap should be a Living Document that evolves as your product does. By regularly revisiting and updating your roadmap, you can ensure that everyone stays aligned on the vision for the product experience.

Initial Research and Brainstorming 🧠

It all starts with UX research. Here, you will develop your UX goals and ideas by brainstorming, researching, and analysing your customer behaviour and product interaction to identify possible pain points and frustrations.

Develop a Compelling Story 🔑

Through the help of two insightful documents – User personas and Journey map, you will craft a narrative around your target user to creatively inform your designers about the problems they must solve.

By the end of this step, you’ll have answers to the following questions:

  • Who your ideal users are, and what do they think?
  • How will your product solve their problems or add value to their lives?
  • How do you envisage your customer interacting with your product?

Competitive Analysis 🆚

The next step in this process is to analyse your competitors to find innovation gaps that your product can fill and gain a competitive advantage. 

Research industry standards and benchmarks, and analyse working for others and what isn’t. By carefully studying your rivals, you’ll be able to create a unique list of UX requirements that’ll help you stand out from others.

Finalise Your Roadmap 📍🗺️

Once you’ve successfully studied situational problems, analysed your target users, and thoroughly evaluated your competitors, you’ll have a detailed document informing your UX designers about the specific solution they need to create.

Success Measurement ⚖️

Lastly, how to know if your UX strategy is working? Thankfully, there are some tale-tale signs of a successful UX strategy, and they are:

  • Increased website traffic or app downloads
  • Enhanced buzz on social media 
  • More website leads and prospects
  • Positive customers reviews

Key Takeaways 😎😊

If you want to create a great user experience, it’s essential to have a well-planned and robust UX strategy in place before starting any design work.  This means understanding your users’ thoughts and what they need and want from your website or app. 

By understanding who your users are, what they need, and how they interact with your product, you can create an experience that meets their needs while meeting your business goals. Good UX strategy is essential for any company looking to create a successful website or product—and it all starts with understanding your users.

It is also prudent to engage professional experts to help you develop and implement this strategy. You can always reach out to us here to discuss what you want to achieve and the best way to go about it.

Published On

September 08, 2022