5 Ways Microcopy Design Builds Great Customer Experience
⏱ Reading Time: 9 minutes
Great microcopy designs have great business possibilities! Joshua Porter was working for an eCommerce project that was losing money because 5% -10% of the transactions failed. Joshua built a system that was able to notify him immediately when an error occurred.
He found the reason behind transaction failure: billing address errors. The address people were entering did not match the one registered with their credit card. How did Joshua solve this loophole in the funnel?
He added the copy “Be sure to enter the billing address associated with your credit card” at the top of the form. Easy and to the point!
“And just like that, the errors went away.” Joshua wrote.
In short, a great microcopy solution. The right microcopy can help build an iconic brand and an unforgettable user experience for your customers. Alongside, improving conversions anywhere between 14.79% and 161.66%!
But, What Is “Microcopy”?
Microcopy is the term for the small sentences and phrases on an app or website interface. They help guide a user through a process or help encourage them to take action!
These small bits of copy can have a huge impact on your brand. Also, they really can make or break your user experience.
Following is a non-exhaustive list of where microscopy is used:
- Error (404) pages
- Form instructions
- Loading screens
- Form fields
- Menu navigation
- Opt-in forms
Your users interact with your websites and software every day. Some of these interactions are good, while others are less so. Microcopy design helps make good interactions great. Microcopy also improves not-so-good ones.
Let’s have a look at how and why microcopy design is essential to make the customer experience much better.
Picture 1. A small bit, as microcopy, can have a huge impact on your business!
Why Is Microcopy Design Essential?
From a business perspective, focussing on designing microcopy thoughtfully, can help your brand. Very small (written) details on your website or digital product can help your business gain various benefits at a minimal cost!
1. Microcopy Boosts Engagement
Effective microcopy has an ability to understand and anticipate customer’s expectations. Thereby it motivates them to take action! A good microcopy speaks the customer’s language. Therefore, is able to make the user feel as if they are having a conversation with the interface. Additionally, it engages and encourages customers to keep going in the buying process. To keep it short- microcopy makes the product easier to use so customers are more relaxed and eager to continue typing away!
Google, for instance, realized that their target users are more interested in casually browsing hotel room options and are not in the headspace to make a reservation yet. Thus, they changed their copy ‘Book a room’ to “Check availability”—an appropriate microcopy for the intent at the time. This action increased the engagement rate by 17%!
Key Takeaway: Speak the language of your customers!
2. Microcopy Is Amazing at Explaining Errors
“Words and pictures are yin and yang. Married, they produce a progeny more interesting than either parent.”
Errors are inevitable to occur while building a website. Every now and then, your users will find themselves on a 404 page. Errors trigger irritation and stress in the users, thus, you must be prepared for such errors. Make sure that your users don’t leave the site without understanding the reason behind this error. Otherwise, they might feel like the site is broken and therefore not trustworthy.
Instead of letting them down, you can make use of a good microcopy that can act as a platform to connect with your customers and sell more. A good microcopy allows users to continue browsing the web in any other way.
Tripadvisor’s website is a good example. They used their error page and gave it a comic point— ‘This page is on vacation… and you should be too! ‘. This way they promote their key service, booking a trip!
Key Takeaway: Anticipate what your site visitors may be looking for, and include it on your 404 error page.
Picture 2. Errors can occur while building a website. It’s up to you what are you going to do with them!
3. Microcopy Increases Confidence
The most vital factor is trust that defines the success of your brand. A digital product can raise concerns for the security and privacy of users. If your target customers feel insecure while making a transaction, it can result in the abandonment of a purchase. This is the reason that 94% of respondents leave a website if they do not trust it.
Microcopy plays a crucial role in earning the user’s trust by intelligently binding together language and design. This dynamic duo has a positive impact on the UX!
LinkedIn, for instance, makes effective use of microcopy to provide transparency, thereby building trust amongst users. They explicitly explain (during the signup process) their premium service and why they are asking for credit card details. All this with info on how to avoid being charged.
Key Takeaway: Be clear and honest with your customers!
4. Microcopy Impacts Conversions
One of the main goals of a website or an app is conversion. Each and every detail—big or small—matters when increasing your site’s conversion rate. It also plays a critical role in getting the user to perform a specific action. For example, subscribing to a newsletter, buying a product, or becoming a follower on a social network.
Yoast.com used microcopy design in their marketing strategy to increase their conversions by 11.30%. The end phrase, ‘Total (there will be no additional costs)‘ and adding a link below ‘Continue shopping’, helped streamline the cart experience.
Picture 3. To improve conversion start by tweaking a microcopy!
5. Microcopy Helps Users Along
When users visit your website or an app for the first time, a number of reasons can stop them from proceeding further. Once they have downloaded your app, they can get confused with it and wonder:
“How does this work?”
“What to do next?”
“Where they are?”
So, you should be prepared in advance to assist your potential users as they interact with your software or product. This is when microcopy design comes into play. A good microcopy creates paths for users that allow them to move quickly, seamlessly, and efficiently from A to B.
Twitter is a perfect example that effectively uses microcopy to help its users to move ahead. Their microcopy helps first-time users to start using a service. A new user can tweet with preloaded tweets (with a hashtag to get them in touch with others like them) or write their own messages.
Key Takeaway: Put your feet in the customer’s shoes. Guide them to move seamlessly and efficiently from A to B.
Microcopy design is an overlooked valuable asset. It perfectly balances the product’s business needs with what’s best for the user. Microcopy delivers customers an intuitive and delightful experience.
The advantages of effective UX microcopy are substantial: increased user engagement, brand loyalty, trust, and frictionless product experiences. When added to an organization’s marketing strategy, it can help a product stand out in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
A good microcopy creates paths for users that allow them to move quickly, seamlessly, and efficiently from A to B. If you are missing out try to tweak it up a bit! It will surely improve your conversions! Good luck!
James Wilson is a seasoned Content Writer at Net Solutions, New York, for ten years with expertise in blogging, writing creative and technical copy for direct response markets, and B2B and B2C industries. Born and brought up in New York, James holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. He has worked for industries like IT, software product design and development, Lifestyle, and written some great insights on technologies like user experience design, mobile app development, eCommerce, etc. Besides his technical background, he is not very disconnected from the digital in his free time – he loves to binge-watch Netflix.
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