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Intro – keep this short. Understanding how and why your users and customers will hear about, understand, acquire and interact with your offer is critical to designing something that is fit for purpose.

What is customer experience?

According to Forbes, customer experience is the "cumulative impact of multiple touchpoints" with an organization. It involves every point of contact you will have with your customers and users: how they experience your organisation and your brand, as well as your offer. Your effort to anticipate customer experience might take account of emotional, psychological, physical, and commercial factors.

Understanding user experience goes far beyond giving customers what they say they want or providing a checklist of features. It should drive you towards the integration of multiple disciplines in development of your offer including engineering, marketing, graphical and industrial design, and interface design.

A short quote: Customer Experience is your customer’s end-to-end journey with you

Martin Zwilling, Forbes

Subtopics

Discovery

As people learn to cope with information overload, it is becoming increasingly hard to get their attention and even more difficult to hold on to it for more than a few seconds. How will you ensure that your target users become aware of your offer; how will you persuade them to engage with it?

Transaction

What’s the deal? Your end user and your customer may not be the same but at the core of your business model is how you exchange value. Who pays? With what? And how?

User Experience

If users do engage with your offer, what will their experience be? Think about the first time of use and subsequent occasions throughout the thing’s lifecycle.

A recent article in the Harvard Business Review “The Truth About Customer Experience” defines it as your customer’s end-to-end journey with you, not just the key touchpoints or critical moments when customers interact with your organization. Customer experience is the cumulative impact of multiple touchpoints over time, which result in a real relationship feeling, or lack of it.

Martin Zwilling, Forbes

External resources

Design Kit

A useful introduction to ‘human-centred design’, a practical, repeatable approach to arriving at innovative solutions by “putting the people you serve at the center of your design process”

Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design: Methods and Tools

The Helen Hamlyn Centre at the Royal College of Art undertakes design research and projects with industry that will contribute to improving people's lives. Illustrated here are eight major activities that they use to engage people throughout the design process.