User experience is the complete reaction a person has when using a product or service. Measuring a user experience can help a company to better refine its products and services not only to meet the expectations of the user, but also to help target the brand to emphasize the beneficial aspects of what is being presented. The different areas that comprise a user experience include the feelings the person has toward the company and the product, the ease of use of the product and the effectiveness of the product or service. A good user experience will leave a person feeling positive toward the company, eager to use the product, and confident that the product or service can consistently provide the desired results.
One area in which a user experience is carefully measured is in the design and implementation of a website. Factors such as ease of use, availability of advertised services and depth of content can all be considered to help refine a website so it can better meet the needs of the user. A website that provides a user with a good experience is likely to be revisited by that user.
A good user experience can help a company define the branding of the products or services offered. When a person has a positive interaction with a company, that person is more likely to establish a bond of trust with that company. This means that, if the company brand is expanded to encompass other areas, then the user will be more likely to trust the company and try the new products or services. This can be seen in many different companies, from food and soda producers to computer and technology manufacturers.
A poor user experience can immediately derail a company, especially if the company is relatively new to the market. Products such as mobile devices, websites or appliances that perform poorly, have a confusing interface or lack support information can leave a user searching for another company. This dissatisfaction also can spread by word of mouth, further damaging the brand of the company.
Different companies approach the user experience in different ways. Some companies consider the experience as a single aspect of an entire production process, such as a user interface in software, while others take a broader approach and involve multiple departments in the development of a good experience. While there ultimately are multiple definitions and fluid, subjective metrics surrounding the entire concept, there is no one correct path to creating a memorable experience that wins over customers.