Branding in Web Interfaces: How Customer Experience Can Make You Stand Out
Whenever you hear “I’m loving it”, you picture McDonald’s. Every time you see the Swoosh logo, you think of Nike. That’s the power of branding.
Your brand is the all-embracing total of the impressions a customer has based on each micro interaction with you. Let’s define the importance of branding in web interfaces, how you can promote awareness and make your products and services more recognizable on the market thanks to a well-thought-out user interface (UI).
Establish a Recognizable Brand Identity Through Branding in UI
Behind each successful business, there’s a distinct story and a unique background. UI/UX branding helps to tell this story to your customers.
UI branding design is a set of graphics assets and visual elements, including logo, brand colors, typography, illustrations, animations, and business cards. Altogether, they play a vital role in brand promotion and market visibility. Because images, colors, and fonts trigger associations with your product, you should never underestimate the importance of branding through the user interface.
Brand identity allows companies to deliver the right message to enhance communication with the customers and reinforce their trust with proper positioning. Your ultimate goal is to create a set of visuals that will distinguish you from other businesses and satisfy the needs of your specific audience.
How They Used to Do It
In the past, getting consumer attention was a no-brainer. Brands would create an intriguing advertisement that outlines the product’s features and benefits and… Well, that was it. In today’s highly competitive market, a strategy like this would mean total failure for a brand. However, a retrospective analysis of branding techniques can teach us a thing or two about building your business identity on the Internet. If businesses aim at future growth and success, they have to adopt customer-centric tactics and engage with customers.
How UI Can Make Your Brand Stand Out Today
All your company’s ideas, values and philosophy have to align with its messaging. You have to build a community, create a unique aura around your brand and speak to your audience instead of targeting it. A user interface is your means of communication with end-users, so everything you want to convey to your audience has to be in it.
With increasingly more marketing strategies appearing, new techniques of branding pop up to help businesses build interfaces that adequately reflect their brand and introduce it to the world.
User motivation matters more than ever today. Your company’s performance depends on the size of your audience. People tend to trust organizations with brand credibility and crowds of devoted fans. So, being recognizable will help you outpace competitors and promote your products or services faster.
When delivering through various channels, make sure that your message is the same to let users switch between them seamlessly. Whenever a consumer sees your ads on the TV, reads your post or launches your application, the experience should be identical — flawless and emphasizing your brand’s positioning.
Establishing your Voice, Personality and Action
Does your logo match your content? Does your content align with your business values? Not really? Then it’s time to revise your brand voice and personality. Your task is to make users distinguish your content on different channels and recognize that it comes from the same brand.
Be consistent in your branding strategy and careful with the efforts you put across your entire marketing ecosystem. This way, you won’t end up with a random assortment of content flooding different channels. It is definitely not the way to give your potential customers a clear, differentiating picture of your brand.
Defining your brand personality and setting the brand voice will help your business establish itself on the market and get identified easily. The first step is to gather every piece of content you produce. Look at it and try to guess which could have been created by your competitor. Now, set it aside and never get back to it. Make sure your every application, e-book or social media post is distinguishable from your competitors, including your color palette. As brand voice goes beyond wording, fonts and shades also matter: according to the recent research, color increases brand recognition by up to 80%.
Imagine your brand is a person. How would you describe it to someone? The traits you’ll illustrate are your brand personality. Keep it in mind when building touchpoints with the customers. Here are a few useful tips:
- Let the audience get acquainted with your brand as a personality.
- Set up in-person communication between your brand and its customers.
- Make friends with consumers, so that anytime they need services or products you offer, they go directly to you and not the competitor.
When it comes to action, translate your beliefs into the company’s strategic decisions. As a basic type of branding, actions your business takes impact its reputation and have to correspond with the brand’s principles, mission and values. Remember Airbnb banning extremists from making reservations and renting apartments? That’s the action to take to highlight your position and views, and that’s the move to make others admire your brand even more.
Following the Best Branding Practices in UI
Each UI/UX element of your website or app is a perfect place to infuse a bit of your brand’s voice and personality.
First, take your time for proper marketing and user research to analyze competition and define the target audience. Merged with the core message you proclaim, the brand values of your prospects have to become a backbone of your UI/UX. It will help designers outline the color scheme and possible logo variants as well as tune animations and icons up to the general concept.
Make UI Branding Instantly Visible
Let’s say, you target active youth that’s always on the move. Light fonts and subtle shadows won’t go there. Consider bright colors, simple forms, sharp corners and large images instead.
Create a mood board with your strategic brand vision and audience demands. Whenever you hesitate about any design element, look at the board and it will point you in the right design direction. What advantages does it offer?
- Helps to create a value-driven design.
- Limits personal opinions that usually interfere with audience needs or brand positioning.
- Brings up the right supporting points and arguments when you decide on each content piece.
- Assists in managing all marketing assets according to a unified template.
Headers, splash pages, animated screens and preloaders are also strategically important when it comes to UI/UX branding.
Positioned at the most visible place, headers have to strike user’s attention and lure them to continue browsing the page.
Because the splash screen is the first page users see when loading your application, it has to be catchy and impressive.
Preloaders notify users about every loading process occurring in your app. If you want users to wait until the page loads, you have to make them stay with an interesting preloader.
Think of a friendly, personified mascot that will be identified with your brand; the users’ guide through the app functions or website pages.
Hire Business-Oriented Designers, Not Artists
A professional designer is an invaluable asset in your company. But how do you find one?
Today, designers have to be more of strategists, business developers and creators of user experiences than artists. It means that a business-centric mindset and a non-standard approach to design are the key differentiators of an expert. A designer who can bridge the gap between the company’s mission and user demands is the one you should look for.
Plus, a skillful designer is a storyteller, and both user experience and user interface have to become a part of a holistic narrative. Browsing through an elegant interface has to be similar to reading an interesting book. A designer’s task is to guide users smoothly from the beginning to the end — from the landing page to the checkout.
Branding Beyond Borders
UI/UX design and a brand work hand in hand.
Adobe claims that 38% of users stop interacting with an app or website if it’s not engaging or has an unattractive layout. This is your chance to offer a great design that will help you resonate in the customers’ minds. Companies that are known for their brand persona will stand the test of time, and their recognizable image won’t be mistaken for another. Once remembered for excellent user experience and a pleasant user interface, your brand will attract users time after time.
Do you feel like your brand can perform better? Chances are, a well-crafted UI/UX can help and get your sales up and running. Maybe, it’s the wrong audience you target? Or you can’t find the right message? Or the logo looks too similar to the competitors’? Drop us a line. Qubstudio will be glad to share our experience and help you build a well-performing brand identity on the web.