8 ways a UX consultant can help your business
Just imagine: you have turned your precious idea of a website into life, your product works great from the technical side, but you still don’t get many customers. One possible reason is that your website provides poor user experience so the visitors simply leave unsatisfied. If this situation is familiar to you, you better look for a bit of professional advice in user experience design. In our article, we will tell you more about the benefits of UX consulting services and guide you on how to find a reliable partner.
What Is UX Consulting?
You have probably heard about user experience (UX), a term that describes how easy and pleasing it is to use a website or app. Components such as interface, content, layout and interactive elements can affect the way customers perceive your website, thus contributing to overall satisfaction.
A user experience consultant can help you find the UX issues, eliminate them, and make your product work logically and intuitively.
What Does a UX Design Consultant Do?
Consultancy is based on expert advice from a professional in the field. Based on their knowledge and experience, a UX consultant can solve the problems you might not have the time, resources, or ability to solve.
In general, the UX consultant’s work includes four stages:
- Primarily research – this step includes communicating with the project team to understand their needs, identifying the target audience, and gathering any other requirements to the solution they develop;
- Users – based on the insights from developers, user interviews, surveys, etc. the UX consultant will help to create customer personas and their journey maps on your website;
- Structure – at this stage, the consultant will develop page outlines, site maps, and wireframes communicating with developers and stakeholders to make sure they are working on a solution that fits the user’s needs;
- Branding – a collaboration with the marketing team to make sure that your brand identity is consistent across all resources. This helps to develop guidelines for developers and designers so the customers won’t miss any message you deliver.
What Questions Can a UX Consultant Help You With?
By hiring a UI UX consultant, you will receive an outside perspective on your project so you won’t be blinded with tunnel vision. The consultant will conduct their user research to detect potential issues and opportunities you can benefit with. What is more, they can provide you with a UX strategy to use while researching, designing, and testing your product.
The UX consultant can also guide the implementation of this strategy and provide you with the best practices to follow.
Reasons to Hire a UX Consultant
If you want quick help and don’t have the time and resources to employ a full-time professional, a UX consultant can be the most efficient solution. There are some scenarios where the consultant can bring fresh vision and enhance the project.
Here are three main reasons to look for UX design consulting:
You might have been working on your project for a while and still failed to detect if something’s not right. You can try to find the issues doing usability tests, but an experienced consultant will not only quickly detect the problems but also provide you with an effective solution.
You can employ an external UX resource to revise your product after development or rebranding. The website can work great from the technology standpoint, but it might have an unattractive design, not scale well, or be hard to navigate. In this case, the consultant will provide you with an honest review and suggestions for a redesign.
The development teams might be busy dealing with current tasks and have no time to think about possible technological innovations. The UX consulting can bring you a fresh view on the problem and supply your team with new ideas so you will stay ahead of the competition.
When Should You Hire a UX Consultant?
If you are not sure whether you need external advice, think about your project. You might lack certainty about your product’s performance or miss a developed UX strategy. Your team might have already identified some usability issues but is still failing to fight them efficiently. You should turn to a UX design consultant when you are not sure how to move forward with your project and need the expertise to boost your team.
How a UX Consultant Can Help Your Business?
In addition to detecting issues and building the strategy, a consultant can teach your team some skills vital to improving UX processes. Let’s have a closer look at several ways your project can benefit from UX consulting.
Do User Research
The first step to providing better experience is to learn who your customers are and what they look for in your website. To better understand your target audience, the consultant will gather the information your team already have, fill the gaps with surveys and interviews, and use analytics on this data. Many consultants visualize their findings via customer journey maps and empathy maps your team can use for design, branding, and marketing.
There are some ways to make the product better for any audience. For example, low loading speed or bad performance can dramatically affect your website’s conversion rate. Based on their experience, UX consultants can quickly audit your product and identify the areas you can improve to increase customer satisfaction within a short time.
Prototype and Test
Consultants can provide you with a variety of possible solutions, and the optimal way might be not immediately apparent. To help you find the best way of optimization, a UX consultant can build a prototype you can use for usability testing. Building an amazing user experience always requires a consistent cycle of prototyping, testing, and modification.
Will Establish Your Strategy
You won’t be able to fix all the issues and increase the conversion rate overnight. Creating a fantastic user experience requires consistent work and changes, and a UX research consultant will help to draw up the strategy your team can follow. After researching, meeting with stakeholders, and clarifying the goals, a UX consultant will develop a long-time vision for your project to outline what needs to be done to improve user experience.
Help Implement Change
A consultant is not a simple advisor on strategic changes, but a mentor who will guide your team in achieving their goals. The implementation of changes can become a challenge itself as it may reveal some hidden issues, but the consultant is there for you to help with all possible problems. There might be a need to adjust your strategy to changing conditions and adapt some processes to meet customer expectations.
Educate and Inspire Colleagues
A strategy cannot succeed without all employees working consistently on reaching the goals. To win the hearts and minds of your team, you have to make sure they all are inspired by your ideas and clearly understand what you expect them to do.
Consultants can create internal guides and learning videos to educate their colleagues. They might even create training programs; inspire team-building activities, workshops, and make presentations that will help you to deliver your messages to everyone within your company.
Create Design Systems
If your staff doesn’t have clear guidelines and the right tools to manage your product, it can lead to chaos. To prevent user experience from fracturing, a UX design consultant can develop design systems to coordinate all people involved in your project. It can include design principles, various manuals, content style guidelines, etc.
Help Incrementally Improve the Experience
Websites and applications are always evolving and improving, thus you will be continually looking for ways to optimize, modify, and advance your product to provide an even better experience. Cooperating with a professional UX consultant can result in a long-term partnership that will help to incrementally improve your product.
Hiring a UX Consultant
You need some preparation to find the best consultant without wasting your resources. First of all, define your goals to clearly understand what you are looking for. Some companies can cover different areas such as research or design, and even specialize in a certain industry. For example, the firm may be proficient in mobile games development, but might not have experience with retail stores.
Communicate with candidates and plan to have at least one meeting or call before the final choice. Evaluate their experience and quality, discuss their previous projects and your challenges, define budget and terms, and ask any other questions related to your case.
Where to Look For a UX consultant
You can ask around to see if some of your friends have used the services of a UX consultant in the past, but there are plenty of companies available online. Select several potential candidates, check their references, ask for samples of work, and read their blog to learn more about their expertise. A good consulting firm will have a trace on the internet, won’t hide their experience, and will gladly provide you with referrals.
Requirements to a UX Consultant
To make sure that you employ real experts in UX, ask for references from other companies who might have faced similar problems. Conduct own research on the internet and examine the case studies of the potential consultants.
Here are some features to look for while hiring a UX consulting firm:
- Expertise in the specific field – a consultant with general experience might lack some specific skills so it’s better to employ a professional in UX research or design, according to your needs;
- Communication and empathy – the external consultant should listen to your needs and find a common language with all the teams involved in a short time. Pay attention to other clients’ references and evaluate the initial communication with the candidate to find an attentive and solution-focused expert;
- Flexibility – a consultant should not just quickly adapt to your terms and initial rules, but also clearly estimate the resources required for optimization;
- Process orientation – a professional should have a strategic approach and provide you with a clear plan for making your product better.
Questions You Need To Ask Your UX Consultant
Before rushing into redesigning your product you must ensure that you will get the most from this process. To guide you on the communication with the chosen agency, we have gathered some questions that will help to clarify what you receive.
Ask the UX consulting company about:
- Target audience and their interaction with the website – you can’t improve user experience without knowing the people who will use your product. UX consulting always includes a research stage to determine your users and build their journey maps;
- The ways to improve UX – some best practices work regardless of the audience you target, and professional consultants can refer to them to increase your website conversion;
- How to understand what experience real users receive – before implementing any changes, your consultant will likely recommend conducting usability testing, for example, on a created prototype of the approved design;
- How to measure the success – many UX consultants utilize different metrics such as conversion rate, bounce rate, and average session duration to evaluate how effective UX improvements are.
UX Consulting Services at Qubstudio
In our work, we are driven by a human-centered design approach, taking into account all the requirements our clients have. To create a fantastic user experience for your customers, we use our knowledge in branding, marketing, and business analytics.
You can rely on Qubstudio’ expertise with:
- UX research;
- UX strategy;
- Usability testing;
- User interface design, and much more.
If you are looking for a UX design consultant, we will be happy to share our knowledge with you, help you face any challenge you may come across, and find a solution that will work great in your particular case.
If your project has faced some challenges in getting your users satisfied, you can use a UX consulting to detect the issues and find an optimal strategy to improve user experience. Partnering with a UX consultant, you will receive not only professional advice but also a mentor who will help to coordinate and guide your team to success. If you are looking for a team who specializes in UX/UI consulting and design, Qubstudio can offer you expertise on any issue you may face.