Design for coherence
The modern user journey is increasingly fragmented shouldn’t
With more and more touchpoints emerging, organisations are in danger of their user’s journey becoming so heavily fragmented that it could become an incoherent mess. To add to the omnichannel experience there are now chatbots and other voice interfaces to consider in the user’s journey, so the experiences and conversations people have with them need carefully designing.
Planning is key, taking a ‘helicopter view’ of the entire user’s journey with the business. This should include doing as much user research as possible to make sure the touchpoints you design align with their goals, and what they’re doing in real life. Turning this research into user journey maps and personas will help guide designers on which touchpoints should be used for different audiences. Many tools exist for supporting these activities; Smaply caters for all of the above, and Xtensio can be used to create simple personas and diagrams, but there are also more traditional offline tools such as Axure that you can use to get the job done.
It’s also important to consider which touchpoints be designed for, especially if it is discovered during the research that it would be inappropriate to use certain methods to contact certain audiences. For example, on a digital experience dealing with a homeless person registering for support services, would it be appropriate to ask for an address?
Designing a coherent experience means not just designing for screens and apps anymore, but every means of contact the customer has with that organisation, so that a unified message can be delivered, regardless of the type of touchpoint. It’s imperative that this key message is decided on from the start. The entire UX team should know from research what message to deliver. It’s a common belief that the more material you present to the user, the greater chance that some of it will be remembered. It’s the old adage of throwing a load of mud in the hope some will stick, but this isn’t true. Your audience will end up confused about the message you are trying to deliver.