Simply put, user experience design (also called UX design) describes a person's experience interacting with a product, service, or interface. If you have a dispensary website or online cannabis store, that means you.
We are long past the days when just having a website was enough to satisfy your customer. These days, your website is where most of your customers will first interact with your brand. So what impression does it give? How is it serving their needs?
We sat down with the in-house UX expert at WUNDERWORX, Rich Enea, to chat about UX design for online retailers. The crux? UX design has to be easy, it has to be beautiful, and it has to flow.
Build an Incredibly Easy User Experience
Enea frames UX design all around a single mantra: "Don't make people have to think," inspired by HCI and Usability engineer Steve Krug's book, "Don't Make Me Think."
The more complicated and challenging it is for your customer to reach the finish line, the more of a chance you'll lose them along the way.
Whether you want people to sign up or fill a cart, your platform(s) should focus on simplifying the customer journey to this conversion. To encourage more sales and bigger carts, a cannabis retailer, for example, would want to highlight the latest collections or biggest sales on the landing page.
Think clear direction for the customer. Make each step of the customer journey front and center, like putting the shop button large and at the top of the website. The fewer clicks a customer has to complete to get there, the better.
This advice even goes for helping customers navigate among your different products. Enea talked about this idea and the Dosist model. Dosist, a revolutionary vape brand, has cut out the complexities of strains altogether and built its line of products based on specific effects.
They've asked consumers, "How do you want to feel?" and then supplied simple, emotive options like Bliss, Calm, and Soothe. Consumers don't need to learn anything about specialty strain effects of cannabis before purchase.
Shopping for Cannabis Online Has to Meet Customer Expectations
Part of the beauty of UX design today is for the average cannabis retailer with an online store — you don't have to reinvent the wheel. In 2021, there were over two billion digital shoppers worldwide, which is nearly 25 percent of the earth's population.
With billions of shoppers and millions of online eCommerce sites, there is now a set of best practices to follow. These best practices apply to online clothing retailers, Amazon shoppers, and your eCommerce cannabis portal.
Following these established best practices ensures you will meet each customer's expectations. Then, when they perform an activity on your website, they get the response they expect.
For example, when someone filters your inventory by edibles, they get all the available edibles in your inventory — instead of just a handful or all the out-of-stock options. Or, when they want to shop for sale items, they can easily find the discount page and the sale price is visibly displayed.
It seems almost too simplistic. But, you'd be surprised how many online retailers make the process more complicated than it needs to be.
The Future of UX: Immediacy and Real-Time Tracking
Remember when Domino's launched the pizza tracker? An online dashboard tells you where the pizza is, from the pizza oven all the way to your doorstep. Only a few years later, many eCommerce enterprises have built this real-time tracking component into their online shopping experience — from Amazon to Uber to Doordash.
Consumers now expect immediate information about their online orders. As soon as they click "Submit Order," they want to know when it was received, when it's getting packed, and the estimated delivery time.
Multinational companies with deep pockets destined for UX developments have already made this immediacy the new standard. Thankfully, you won't need this kind of investment to meet the future of consumer expectations.
Most cannabis-friendly eCommerce plugins, like Woocommerce, Dutchie, and Jane, all are building real-time tracking and order updates into their platforms.
Final Takeaway for UX Design: Don't Make People Have to Think
The core of UX design is simplifying the user experience to meet consumer expectations. That is the essence of UX design for any eCommerce company — cannabis and CBD retailers included.
Do your website, products, and eCommerce experience do this effectively?
While the concepts are simple, the nuances in execution often require considerable finesse. Working with a UX design expert navigates these intricacies and ensures you follow current best practices and set up for future expectations.
What's the first step? A UX audit to identify where consumers are getting hung up, where their frustrations lie, and what design upgrades can improve conversions.
Are you Ready To Get Started?
We understand what it's like to face a partial or total UX overhaul. If you would like to learn more about improving your website or app's UX design to increase conversions, let's have a conversation.
WUNDERWORX provides the power of real-time, compliant programmatic advertising, content, email marketing, and UX website design. Let us demonstrate how intelligent, expert-led UX design can reduce barriers to sales and improve customer experience. If you would like to learn more let's have a conversation.