Engineering User Experiences
When I first heard the term UX, I thought, "Great - yet another buzzword".
It wasn't until I started looking into it that I realized I was already doing a lot of UX: to me, it was just good programming.
Although user experience extends beyond code, creating a good user experience is impossible without it.
What does it mean to "engineer" experiences?
Ever visit a website that provided you with everything you needed?
Chances are, you visit such a site every day. You may not even realize what a great site you're on as you peel through the pages. That's a good thing. It means you're far too engaged with the content the site is providing to recognize what a great experience it's providing.
What happens when you visit a bad website?
When people land on a website that doesn't do what it's supposed to, they leave. The faster, the better. For the unfortunate ones that can't click the back button right away (sometimes it happens: banking sites were/are notorious for this), they suffer through it... but at a cost.
Engineering user experiences means many things, but primarily it's about making sure your users never have to want, worry, or wander.
Learn more about UX engineering.
Expand to learn how you're already paying for your user experience.
You're already paying for user experience. The only question is "how much"?
If you have a website, user experience is an ongoing expense.
Bad experiences aren't free. Each time you lose a visitor because of a poor experience, it costs you. When people have to put up with poor programming or a site that makes it hard to find what they're looking for, they look for an exit.
No one "gets away" with anything anymore.
Maybe they have to use your site for the moment: they make a note of it. If they have to use it again, each time is another strike against your brand. If they have to keep coming back for more, they may just remove you from the equation all together.
Investing in the expectations of your user will always cost less than creating negative experiences.