Tag Archives: marketing

design for business

Business-Oriented Design. Know Your Target.

Successful business in never a simple game: it is the complex mechanism and to make it work, we have to know the factors of influence and methods of their effective combination. Design is definitely one of those secrets which can have a great impact on profits and promotion. Moreover, this is the coin of two sides, because real design is not only about the nice skin and stylish look but also about functionality and utility. So, today we continue the series of posts devoted to design for business goals. 

 

Earlier we have already published the glossary posts with key notions for the topics of business terms and abbreviations useful for designers as well as highlighted some aspects in more details in the free ebook «Design for Business». This time let’s add some deeper insights into the essence of setting and exploring the target of the product and the mutual influence of design and marketing have on each other.

 

design process

 

Marketing

 

«Marketing is a contest for people’s attention». Seth Godin

 

Definition. In general terms, marketing is the set of studies and methods devoted to the management of exchange relations. Basically, it is the multi-layered process whose aim is to connect the products with the customers. It can involve the variety of advertising and promotional activities, market and customer research, organization of sales, direct and indirect communication with the target audience. In terms of tough and diverse competition on most markets nowadays, marketing is the strategy and the trophy to achieve is users’ and customers’ attention.

 

Design aspect. Design and marketing have been supporting each other for many decades, so there are two basic directions of their connection.

 

The direction from marketing to design means involving techniques of marketing into the design process from the early stages of product creation or updates. The cases when marketing strategy is thought out from the stage of ideation on the future product makes design even more meaningful: not only do designers create the product solving users’ problems or satisfying needs, but also set the channels and ways how product can be noticed by the customer, how it can get interesting for target user and what are the ways to show its benefits effectively. Knowing all that stuff, the designers can find the appropriate UX — the logic of the product and UI — visual presentation of its features. Each tiny element or aspect like the color or shape of a button to the global approach to color palette, the choice of fonts and the space between elements on the page or screen, every transition and microinteraction designed properly and applied wisely can have a huge impact on the success of the product and its ability to fulfill the business goals.

 

web design tubik

Web design for e-commerce: Vinny’s Bakery

 

Moreover, it must be said: the high-quality user-friendly product is the best marketing strategy. That is why design plays the crucial role as it creates the features and the wrapping able to attract users’ and engage them, spark the wish to use it again and make it helpful so that users could have the solid reason to love it.

 

The reverse direction from design to marketing means that design itself becomes a powerful way to present the product or even the person on the market. Design solutions applied for creating commercial, corporate or personal identity through branding become the foundation for the marketing strategy, in most cases starting from the moment when the product gets its sign of distinction such as logo or icon. Designers create visual support of the promotional campaigns from posters, leaflets, and brochures to complex sets of branded items and corporate interior style of point-of-sales. As long as people are the creatures of not only physical but also social and aesthetic nature, design is going to take a big part of any business success.

 

business cards design

Corporate branding: design of business cards

 

Anyway, marketing is the point where people who create the product and those who build the bridge between the product and the customer should have the same goals: to provide users/customers with something that will be helpful and satisfying their needs. To do that, first of all, it’s important to set the group for which it is created and analyze what its preferences are.

 

Target audience

 

«In sales there are going to be times when you can’t make everyone happy. Don’t expect to and you won’t be disappointed. Just do your best for each client in each situation as it arises. Then, learn from each situation how to do it better the next time.» Tom Hopkins

 

Definition. The term «target audience» comes from the spheres of publishing, in which it means the readers intended for the particular book or edition, and marketing, in which it sets behind the group of customers potentially interested in the particular product or service. The quickly developing sphere of digital products such as websites or applications absorbed this term immediately meaning the audience which presents the potential users of the specific app or website. 

 

Certainly, for many creators, it can be hard initially to find out what their target audience is: they would like this product to be used and loved by everyone. Still, in real life, it’s a sort of utopia which can become a death knell for the product. Selecting the core target audience and then, if needed and possible, broaden the abilities of the product to make it attractive and useful for the broader circle of users in many cases proves itself as much more successful and effective strategy. Setting the priorities, it’s easier to concentrate on key functionality and make it faster than trying to satisfy everyone at once.

 

wedding planner app UI design

App design for wedding planner

 

Design aspect. As we mentioned in the ultimate guide to creating a mobile application, user research and market research are highly advisable to be done at the start of the creative process to provide the designer or the creative team with understanding what their target audience is:

— what their interests and wishes are

— what kind of communication and lifestyle is convenient and common for them

— what problems they have and which of them the designed product solves

— what are the typical environments when they use this kind of products

— where they could get the information about the product

— what could stimulate them to try the product

— what could engage them to get back to it again after the first experience

— what could involve them into using the product on the regular basis

— what could make this product different from the others on the market for the target users.

 

Joel Anderson said, “You can’t just open a website and expect people to flood in. If you really want to succeed you have to create traffic.” Design is one of the powerful methods to do it, especially in cases when it’s strengthened with appropriate copy and general content selection. Creating custom graphics, supporting microinteractions with motion, writing clear, concise and informative copy, choosing readable fonts and nice color combinations, setting landing pages for specific purposes instead of sending the user to the tons of information on the home page of the website, you can directly attract and create traffic that will give profits and support the thriving business.

 

toonie alarm UI design

Funny and bright design for Toonie Alarm

 

upper app UI design case study

Minimalistic and elegant design for Upper App

 

Targeting

 

«You can’t wait for customers to come to you. You have to figure out where they are, go there and drag them back to your store.» (Paul Graham)

 

Definition. Briefly, targeting is another term from marketing widely applied in the sphere of digital design. It is usually associated with the strategy and techniques of the particular target audience to find the best and the shortest ways to attract their attention to the particular product.  

 

Design aspect. The scheme is very simple: when you shoot without seeing your target, the chance that you will score exists but its miserably slim. If you shoot seeing the target, the chances grow. The closer you come to your target, the higher becomes the possibility of hitting the mark. 

 

This metaphor successfully works in both marketing and design. Having set who the potential user of the designed website or app is and researching the basic and extended data about this group of users, designers are able to create the solutions which will get close to the user along one or several factors. Let’s briefly review what aspects and factors can influence this process setting the directions of targeting.

 

Geographic targeting. Location of the person is important to set the cultural background as well as the natural environment of using the product. It means that even one product can be different in some visual features or operational performance to satisfy users from the particular country or region, up to having different names to sound more catchy or informative on the local market.

 

Gender targeting. If you know that your target audience is mostly man or mostly women, this kind of data can have a great impact on design solutions based on the psychological and perceptional difference. Even such a basic aspect as color choice can be highly influenced by the gender of core target audience. 

 

Psychographic targeting is grounded on knowledge of motives which move the user to try this type of product. It is based on deep knowledge of the typical lifestyle, interests etc.

 

Demographic targeting happens when creators and marketers are focused on catching attention and involving a particular demographic group, for example, based on age, ethnicity, income, qualification, marital status, having kids etc.

 

Behavioral targeting is based on defining the target audience along the particular models of behavior, for example, young adults regularly visiting night clubs or people buying coffee and drinking it on the go. 

 

ui animation design tubik

Night in Berlin App

 

Understanding the process and methods of targeting and getting this sort of knowledge enables designers to choose the shortcuts to users’ needs and wishes. That is why in cases of outsourcing design it’s highly advisable to take all the chances of getting maximum possible information about the potential users and business goals from the customer. One of the good methods is creating user personas, user stories and user cases, on which we will give more details in our next posts.

 

Recommended reading

 

Hopefully, these insights will somehow help designers to get closer to the market creating goal-centered products for various businesses. Before soon, we will definitely provide you with new posts and thoughts on this theme, meanwhile here is the list of recommended articles which could be helpful.

 

Personas Make Users Memorable for Product Team Members

5 ways design and marketing can work together better

One Persona to Rule Them All

Designing for your target audience

Matching site design to your target demographic

Short but Vital. Key Abbreviations in Design for Business.

The Importance of Design in All Marketing Campaigns


Welcome to see the designs by Tubik Studio on Dribbble and Behance

Welcome to read or download the free ebook «Design for Business»

tubik studio design business

Business Terms in Design for E-Commerce. Sales Basics

 

«Contrary to popular belief, designers are not artists. We employ artistic methods to visualize thinking and process, but, unlike artists, we work to solve a client’s problem, not present our own view of the world.» (Erik Spiekermann)

 

 

Modern design has multiple faces, sides and directions. Some of them are more artistic than the others which are deeper concentrated on profits and goals. However, any way it goes design is the sphere with different perspective. Design is goal-oriented and problem-solving activity applying art to serve people.

 

«Whether you are helping to launch a new business from scratch, or making incremental changes to an existing product, or something in between, any design task you undertake must serve a goal. It’s your job to find out what those goals are.» (Mike Monteiro)

 

Talking about the sphere of web and app design, one of the most practical and goal-oriented fields of creativity is design for e-commerce. In this domain, there are many factors influencing design decisions and lots of relevant aspects to study and research. Designing a product for ecommerce, be it a website, a web or mobile application, branding design, advertising materials, designers work within various limitations built by particular product or service features, target audience, marketing and promotion strategy, business goals, budget and investment plan etc. Design becomes a tool working when used properly. Therefore, to use it efficently, the designer needs to know the basics of business and economy as the goal of design process in this case is creating an app or a website raising money and built on business techniques and methods. Moreover, quite often designers creating e-commerce platforms and products work in team with marketologists, advertisers, researchers, analysts and psychologists all of whom have a purpose to increase the level of profit brought by the final product.

 

So, today we decided to start collecting and explaining here basic business terms which are important in the process of digital design for e-commerce. Considering this list can make the designer much closer to marketologists and provide great help for better communication. In addition, keeping the aspects mentioned below in mind on the earliest stages of design such as UX research and wireframing is a good way to effective solutions increasing profits on the solid well-thought-out logic of interaction. The set of terms can be also useful for project managers involved in the process and managing collaboration between different sides of the same process.

 

tubikstudio design office teamwork

 

Business Basics

 

Today’s section is focused on basic terms used in the domain of economics and business strategy mostly concentrated on sales in their broad understanding. Taking them into account and analysing significantly increases the chances of creating efficient digital product.

 

«A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all.» Michael LeBoeuf

 

E-commerce (Electronic Commerce)

 

«If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.» (Jeff Bezos)

 

Definition. E-commerce is the direction of business activity when the process of providing customers with goods or services is done by means of electronic devices and the Internet. This sort of communication and finalization of sales adds some new aspects to data management, sales channels, advertising, presenting goods and services and moreover — enabling full cycle of commerce operations, including payments, delivery and refunds.

 

The last decade witnessed booming ecommerce development. Today it provides the opportunities for not only e-trade both from businesses to buyers but also online auctions and user-to-user sales platforms. E-commerce systems and activities today include presenting and booking wide range of services, e-banking, commercial operations with e-money and e-wallets, diverse forms of e-marketing and many other things which customers are using more and more often on everyday basis.

 

Design aspect. Obviously, success of e-commerce activity depends on several factors among which:

— quality of the product or service offered

— quality of the content presenting the offer to customers

— quality of design for the electronic platform — website and/or mobile application — via which the sales are going to be delivered.

 

So, it’s easy to see that UI/UX design part plays the vital role. Thoroughly thought-out logic and transitions, simple and clear microinteractions, fast feedback from the system, attractive product presentation, easy payment flow and plenty of other details and features can directly influence increasing profits for the business involved in such a popular e-commerce game. This is the field where designers and business experts can work as one team for good of everyone, first of all of target user.

 

Designing e-commerce website or mobile app, designers should definitely consider the following aspects:

 

— operational simplicity

— strong branding

— security of users’ data

— effective use of visual elements

— clear data presentation via menus, catalogues etc.

— user’s ability to leave feedback about goods and services

— easily available general and contact information about the business providing goods or services

— design that supports the offer not overshadowing it.

 

tubikstudio ui animation

Product Card Animation by Alla Kudin

 

Conversion

 

«It’s much easier to double your business by doubling your conversion rate than by doubling your traffic» (Jeff Eisenberg)

 

Definition. Initially in terms of e-commerce, conversion is the index showing how many visitors actually moved to the end of the way they were offered actually buying a product. So, for e-commerce conversion transforms visitors (users) into buyers.

 

Design aspect. Today ecommerce uses wide range of techniques, so in terms of web or app platforms meaning of conversion also gets broader. In modern terms of comprehensive and numerous functions and needs, which users are able to fulfill with online resources and digital products, conversion is the rate of cases when visitors did the action they were called to. And that can be not only buying something.

 

For example, in our article about landing pages which are recognized as one of strong tools for e-marketing and e-trade we mentioned that conversion can be also fixed in case of:

 

  • moving to direct use of a product
  • subscription
  • transition to the other page
  • downloading an app or a file
  • providing some information
  • answering the question in the survey
  • starting free/discounted trial use of a product
  • browsing a library
  • reading more detailed description of the product or service etc.

 

Therefore, conversion for a webpage or app screen can mean different actions that correspond to sales or marketing strategy of the particular business.

 

Conversion means that your page transforms passive users into active. They don’t just observe the information given to them, but also do the action which is offered by this page. So, conversion is one of the most important indices of the web page or app screen efficiency which is vital for business. It is a metric reflecting focus on engaging visitors with data performance and stimulating them to make the action which is a part of a business plan.

 

For designers the factor mentioned above means that if they create design concentrated on conversion rates via positive user experience, their work will result in website or app bringing profit both for user and business.

 

Landing Page Animation Tubik Studio

Landing Page Animation by Sergey Valiukh

 

Read more and review the examples on this topic in our previous article

 

Sales Funnel

 

«Communications is at the heart of e-commerce and community.» (Meg Whitman)

 

Definition. Sales funnel (in other words — purchase funnel) is a technique which is deeply customer-focused and based on gradual involvement of a customer into the process that potentially gets finalized with the act of actual purchase. When this technique is applied, the customer moves through several stages of involvement providing him/her with necessary information about the product and benefits persuading to make a purchase.

 

Basic sales funnel includes the following stages:

 

— Introduction (Awareness). User gets the initial information about the product, its brand name and nature. In other words, user learns that the product or service exists on the market.

 

— Education (Interest). User is provided with more detailed information about the features and benefits of the product or service that can potentially interest them and solve their problems.

 

— Evaluation (Analysis). User gets the chance to compare the offer with its competitors and obtain the information about USPs (Unique Selling Points) of the offered product or service.

 

— Decision (Engagement). User gets final vital arguments engaging him/her to make a decision; it can be short summing-up about core benefits of the offer, data about additional bonuses or special offers, engaging call to actions and explanation of purchase process.

 

— Purchase. User makes a decision and takes the ability to make a purchase. The sale is done.

 

— Retaining (Repeating the experience). User gets the opportunity to leave feedback, obtain additional contacts supporting the offer, subscribes to updates, gets the chance to repeat the purchase easily if desired.

 

Design aspect. In terms of e-commerce, sales funnel is highly effective commercial technique supported with diversity of functions digital products can offer. Knowing the priciples of sales funnel leads to customer-centric, informative and engaging design solutions. Sales funnel can be either fully represented on the website or landing page as well as in mobile application or from outer source,  for example social media taking over the mission of awareness and interest and directing engaged traffic to the platform enabling the product.

 

In addition, sales funnel stages thought out and applied properly can work as a sort of filters letting quickly inform users about the product or service and move to the next stage those who are potentially more interested while saving time and effort for those who are looking for something other.

 

However, sales funnel designed carelessly can play the opposite role: it can confuse users who are potential buyers and turn them out of the website or app without taking a chance to know proper information about the offer.

 

Sales funnel should be applied and designed on the basis of thorough research of target audience and market segment. Moreover, it should be carefully tested from the very start of its implementation to measure if all the stages work efficiently. Practice proves that even minor design changes can bring big changes.

 

website design concept tubikstudio

BRMC Website by Konst

 

Sales Channel

 

«It is not your customer’s job to remember you.It is your obligation and responsibility to make sure they don’t have the chance to forget you.» Patricia Fripp

 

Definition. Sales channels are the ways through which the potential customers come to the point of e-commerce, be it a website or mobile application with which they can realize the actual purchase.

 

Design aspect. Designing for e-commerce, it is important to take into account maximum of the possible sales channels which are really numerous in the Internet, from social networks to specialized forums, influencer’s reviews and tailor-made advertising campaigns. Researching and understanding those channels gives broader prospects to the actual point of sale which you are designing for.

 

There are several vital asects to remember about:

 

— Sales channels should be initially concentrated on target audience. There is always the place and time to broaden the perspective as soon as core target audience is involved. However, the attempts to «sell for all» and «design for everyone» from the launch can bring to waste of effort, time and money spent on design and promotion. Move gradually and measure the efficiency of design solutions at every step.

 

— Sales channels will work effectively from initial awareness stage if they witness strong connection to general brand identity. That is the reason to develop guidelines for online sources presentation in brandbook considering all the details of visual presentation and mission statement. Consistency is a powerful tool of both design and marketing.

 

— Sales channels should direct traffic to the places which enable users quickly get informed and make the actions they come for. For example, if the post in Facebook invites users to participate in summer sale, they should be directed right on the landing page of this sale, not to the home page of the website.

 

The mentioned factors thought out at the stage of thinking over UX design solutions are able to make a good impact on conversion and sales rates.

 

Niche

 

«We will continue to see a convergence of the digital and physical world. Those who conquer that trend will be market leaders.» John Phillips

 

Definition. In business, niche means concentration of the offer on specific needs, wishes and problems of a specific target audience. Niche market is a specialized market segment which is aimed at specific market needs with a close view on its demography, education level, level of income and purchase abilites etc. For example, when one company produces software generally used for creating and editing textual materials for broad target audience while the other is adopted for specific needs of copywriters and editors (grammar checking, plagiarism analysis, synonyms prompts etc.), the latter one presents the niche business.

 

Design aspect. Designing for niche market and niche product, it’s important to learn all the details about the target audience as it is going to be quite specific and more details are usually influencing the process of design and marketing. Applying psychology of color, copy targeted at potential clients, deep analysis of their needs and providing efficient layout, easy transitions, clear data presentation and aesthetic features that suit this particular audience is good way to high profit. In addition, creative ways to emphasize specific nature of the product or service by means of design such as branding and original UI solutions can help the product to stand out of the crowd and stay competitive.

 

tubik studio ui animation

Bonano e-commerce interactions by Vladyslav Taran

 

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

 

«It is quite true that man lives by bread alone — when there is no bread. But what happens to man’s desires when there is plenty of bread and when his belly is chronically filled?

At once other (and “higher”) needs emerge and these, rather than physiological hungers, dominate the organism. And when these in turn are satisfied, again new (and still “higher”) needs emerge and so on. This is what we mean by saying that the basic human needs are organized into a hierarchy of relative prepotency» (Abraham Maslow, 1943).

 

Definition. One of the basic psychological theories widely applied in business on both micro- and macroeconomical levels. Developed by Abraham Maslow, it is focused on the hierarchy of human needs and consequently factors of motivation.

 

Its presentation found at Simply Psychology website features  5 levels of human needs featured by the theory:

 

1. Biological and Physiological needs — air, food, drink, shelter, warmth, sex, sleep.

 

2. Safety needs — protection from elements, security, order, law, stability, freedom from fear.

 

3. Love and Belongingness needs — friendship, intimacy, affection and love, — from work group, family, friends, romantic relationships.

 

4. Esteem needs — achievement, mastery, independence, status, dominance, prestige, self-respect, respect from others.

 

5. Self-Actualization needs — realizing personal potential, self-fulfillment, seeking personal growth and peak experiences.

 

Design aspect. Having read the points of the theory, it’s easy for a designer to ask: «What does it have in common with design process?» The link perhaps doesn’t look really obvious, but it is fundamental in motivating people to use or buy products or services on different levels of economic relationship. Designing for e-commerce, which is one more type of human relationship, with a specific goal and ability to apply the mentioned theory can produce user-friendly and customer-centric product achieving its target audience and solving its problems.

 

Certainly, it’s great when designer is able to involve professional marketologists into all the stages of the creative process and apply their professional knowledge and skills in design form. However, this opportunity isn’t always available. Moreover, designer able to analyse economic basics and business factors influencing the design scheme and logic gets the higher level of proficiency.

 

In design for e-commerce, it is good to understand from the early stages of the process what stage of the Maslow’s pyramyd the core target users are at. Answering this question, designer is able to talk to users’ in their language and find the solutions that resonate in their hearts and minds the best. Users’ needs form their motifs, triggers that can catch their attention, words that can touch them, length of copy and calls to actions that they are ready to accept and follow. Analyzing the level of needs and expectations, designer is able to find the most efficient layout and informative graphic elements. Knowing and feeling the user is the solid foundation for problem-solving goal-oriented design.

 

ui animation cafe app tubikstudio

Cafe Coupon App by Dima Panchenko

 

4P Theory

 

“People don’t call it e-commerce anymore. It’s called omni-commerce, and it’s the idea that digital permeates every step of the purchase chain from product discovery to trial to pricing to actual purchase.” (Tolman Geffs)

 

Definition. Famous 4P theory, presented by Neil H. Borden and later grouped by E.Jerome McCarthy, also known as marketing mix, has become highly popular and efficient in business strategy, including e-commerce sphere. It states that product launch and lifecycle is based on four «P» factors: product, price, place, promotion. Business Case Studies website simply formulates it the following way:

 

«When marketing their products, firms need to create a successful mix of:

  • the right product
  • sold at the right price
  • in the right place
  • using the most suitable promotion.»

 

Marketing case studies prove that missing even one of four mentioned positions can waste all the effort and reduce the levels of profit and brand awareness significantly.

 

Design aspect. No doubt, 4P theory is highly applicable in design for e-commerce. The Price of product is usually the furthest part from designer’s decisions as it is decided and given by the stakeholders ordering design part of work. In perspective of Product it works only partly being applicable to those cases when users buy digital products or services, let’s say mobile applications, which also need UI/UX design.

 

However, talking about the other two factors we can see how actual they are in terms of design effort and creativity. Indeed, designers creating websites or apps for e-commerce, create the right Place for trading and are responsible for making this place comfortable, attractive and correspondent to the product nature as well as target audience expectations. As for the Promotion, today online marketing features numerous ways of presenting the product and achieve the target audience; it’s effectiveness also significantly depends on design decisions. 

 

Neglecting close interconnection and mutual influence of all those factors on the final result increases risk of poor rates. Design decisions made on the basis of those factors supporting each other help to provide pleasant, positive, easy-to-use and user-focused e-commerce platforms.

 

Tubik studio UI animation

Tubik Studio | Museu by Ernest Asanov

 

The bottom line

 

The set of business terms and their definitions given above builds the bridge between business strategies and designs able to efficiently support them. However, it’s very easy to get overwhelmed with all those techniques and forget the first and most important thing. There are no any sophisticated design solutions, marketing techniques and any sort of magic which will sell the bad product for a long time. Surely, there can be some effect, but it will never retain the users. Positive experience of interaction with a website will not overcome bad experience of interaction with low-quality product or service.

 

The offer is the key. Design is an actionable and helpful tool on every stage of launching, presenting and promoting the product, informing users about it and selling it in fast and easy way. Nevertheles, if the product is of poor quality, successfull design of e-commerce platform isn’t going to make it better. Think over the product and its user first, only then design will give it the chance to beam at full.

 

«To satisfy our customers’ needs, we’ll give them what they want, not what we want to give them.» Steve James

 

tubik studio designer ecommerce

 

Don’t miss our next article which is going to present the set of business terms useful for UI/UX and graphic designers in terms of marketing and user research. Stay tuned!


Welcome to see the designs by Tubik Studio on Dribbble and Behance