April 29, 2023
4 Mins to Read

5 Ways bad user experience (UX) can hurt your business & how to fix it

5 Ways bad user experience (UX) can hurt your business & how to fix it

The time it takes to mentally grade a website from good to bad is less than 5 seconds. In a digital world, first impressions are critical. The key to a lasting first impression on your website is effective and engaging UX.

Poor UX can cost you your customers, leads, and reputation. But, if you’re suffering from thoughtless UX, all is not lost. 

Part I of this two-part UX series will show you why you should care about bad UX, the key signs to look out for, and how to fix the issues.

Impacts of bad UX

Why is it important to prioritize user experience (UX)? Consider the disappointment and loss of trust that can occur when a much-anticipated product fails to meet expectations. 

Similarly, a website that does not fulfill its intended purpose can cause frustration and inconvenience for users, leading to a loss of customers and potentially negative reviews. To prevent these issues, it’s crucial to prioritize UX.

Here are 5 ways bad UX can impact your business and the solutions you can take to reverse the effects.

Significant revenue loss

Investing in UX can bring a high ROI. On average, every $1 invested in UX yields a return of $100 for an ROI of x9. 

A well-designed user interface can also increase a website’s conversion rate by up to 200%. These statistics demonstrate the direct impact of UX on revenue. If bad UX is left unaddressed, it can lead to decreased engagement, shorter dwell times, and lost revenue.

money down the drain

How to avoid revenue loss

The best time to avoid revenue loss was when you first created your site, but the second best time to address it is right now. Every day delayed could cost you. Avoid significant revenue loss by prioritizing your UX strategy.

Effective UX involves creating a seamless, intuitive journey that encourages users to explore, engage, and convert. Regardless of the evaluation metrics used, such as conversion rate, drop-off rate, customer satisfaction, or retention rate, UX plays a vital role in driving business success.

Low search engine rankings

User experience plays a crucial role in SEO. Search engines consider factors beyond just keyword use when evaluating websites. They also consider whether a website meets the needs and goals of its users. 

As a result, a positive user experience is essential for ranking highly in organic search results and can significantly impact a company's profits, reputation, and customer base.


How to fix low search rankings

To achieve both SEO and UX success, you’ll want to focus on the following:

Optimizing site load speed

A site should load in 2-3 seconds or less to provide a good user experience. According to Google, a page should be lightweight and not exceed 3 MB.

Providing relevant, targeted content with a clear purpose

The content on the website should be well-written, relevant, and provide value to the target audience. The purpose of the content should be clear and easily understood.

Conducting effective keyword research

Keyword research should be done to understand the most relevant and popular keywords that people use to search for the products or services offered on the website. Optimize your website's content and meta tags for these keywords to improve its search engine ranking.

Carefully designing the navigation of the website

Navigation should be intuitive and easy for users to understand. Drop-down menus and clear labelling of sections help improve the user experience.

A diluted brand image

Your brand image shapes the way your consumers think about what you do and who you are. It persuades them to be loyal to you, to recommend your brand to their friends, and to post about your products or services. Bad UX can dilute your brand image; if your users have a bad experience on your site, they associate your brand with that negative experience. 

Jakob’s Law states that if a website does not align with how they think it should operate, it can lead to a poor experience and negative brand perception. Basically, your site should operate predictably, like all the other sites out there, or people will get frustrated trying to use it. 

As Jeff Bezos famously said, "Your brand is formed primarily not by what your company says about itself, but what the company does." 

Customers come to love a brand not just because of its history or the people behind it but because of their positive experiences using the product or service. They become evangelists and brand ambassadors when they have an exceptional experience, which marketing efforts alone cannot achieve.

branding cost blog feature image

How to fix a diluted brand image

First, make sure your site isn’t negatively affecting your brand image with frustrating pathways or an unpredictable model. 

Then, adjust your site’s UX to better represent your brand’s intentions. There are opportunities on every site where you can delight your users and communicate your brand persona. 

Are you an easy-breezy brand that prides itself on customer service? Then make your UX as streamlined and friendly as possible. Is your brand a thought-leader, intellectual type? Then be sure your UX inspires an atmosphere of authority and trust. Project confidence in 

If you are unsure what your brand image is, you may need to create a powerful brand strategy.

Low customer retention

Poor user experience can lead to low customer retention rates. Research from Hubspot shows that 88% of online consumers are less likely to return to a site after a negative experience.

Fixing low customer retention

A website's brand perception is closely tied to the user experience it provides. Understanding user psychology and designing the website accordingly is essential for building a strong brand image and attracting repeat customers or new ones.

You can improve your customer retention by mapping out your customer journeys and identifying and rectifying any areas of friction. You can also spot opportunities for delighting your customers here.

Poor online reviews

People are more likely to share negative online reviews than positive ones. According to marketing charts, 46.7% of customers will share a negative review if they have a poor user experience. 

People want to vent their frustration by sharing it with others, so don’t let your site be a source of frustration.  Building an online reputation is no mean feat, and bad UX can destroy it within seconds. Literally!

happy finger face reviews

Fixing poor online reviews

When a negative online review comes to light, address it as soon as possible. Offer an explanation (but not an excuse) and a solution. 

Look at negative reviews as an opportunity to turn an upset customer into a brand advocate. When frustrated, people often just want to be heard and acknowledged, and a future discount code can go a long way in rectifying a relationship. 

Once you have addressed your negative reviews, take note of any common complaints. These can show you areas where your UX is failing; this is valuable and free insight into weak links in your strategy.

Turning bad UX around

Although poor UX can have negative consequences for a business, it is not necessarily the end of the line. The key to turning things around is to identify the issues causing the bad UX and take swift action to correct them.

Make sure you don't miss part II where we take a deeper dive into common UX mistakes and how to fix them by subscribing to Mercury below.

Olu Osunrinde,

Design with community in mind, innovate with technology at heart, and drive business success by finding the sweet spot where they all converge.

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