In the digital age, User Experience Design is playing an increasingly prominent role in the art of branding. As activity in the digital and social space is growing at an unprecedented pace, brands must learn to adapt to the growth in digital activity. Brands should no longer only focus on the in-store experience, but the online experience too.
Red Mango, the popular smoothies and frozen yogurt chain, is a brand that has recognized and embraced the value of creating a great user experience for customers. The user experience across their website and mobile platforms is characterized by simplicity, ease of use, and usefulness. By evaluating the UX of Red Mango across digital platforms, I’ll shed light on what works and what doesn’t.
When it comes to UX, there are a few points to consider…
1. Keep it simple stupid (K.I.S.S)
The Red Mango website embraces a sleek and simple design that is pleasant to the eye, whilst being functional and practical.
In terms of aesthetics across digital devices, the color palette of red, white and green remains consistent. Although images of their special offer items such as their smoothies and mint cookie differ in aesthetics such as color and font, the rest remains consistent. This level of consistency across aesthetics reinforces their brand identity. Moreover, the choice of fonts and color palette reflects the brand personality. Red Mango positions itself as healthy, fresh, reliable and an emblem of consistent quality. The aesthetics reflect these qualities.
As for practical value, the functions are clearly and neatly displayed to the left, top and bottom of the website, leaving sufficient empty space. As the website is not cluttered and chaotic, the overall experience of navigating through the website is pleasant and desirable.
As a brand, we must be constantly thinking: “how can I make my consumer’s life easier?”. As our culture is becoming increasingly saturated and noisy, customers appreciate user-friendly products that embrace simplicity and provide value for customers, whilst being aesthetically appealing.
2. Be quick to capture and maintain our attention
The Red Mango website is responsive and loading time is quick.
We live in a culture and age that expects instant gratification. According to Sally Hogshead, our attention spans have declined to a mere 9 seconds so as consumers, we expect information fast. As such, the user experience should be responsive and allow the consumer to find what they want, fast.
3. Customize content accordingly
The content provided by Red Mango across digital platforms are specifically customized and tailored accordingly.
Whilst their website is comprehensive and highly informative, providing information on their brand story, displaying infographics and video content etc., their mobile app customizes information according to store location and is overall more simplistic in content and design. Upon launching the app, users must select their Red Mango store. Once the location has been selected, information is kept to a minimum. Only information that would be most relevant and useful to a customer using a mobile device on the go is displayed. For example the address, opening hours and directions on how to get there are shown, whilst other information such as ‘our story’ and ‘careers’ that would be shown on the website, is omitted. Moreover, the app is also perfectly integrated with their rewards system, offering a “check-in to earn points” function based on its geo-targeted capabilities.
4. Be Social
At the bottom of the website, Red Mango displays their social media icons proudly.
In an increasingly social world, brands should always integrate their social media channels on their website. The more ways the customer can connect with your brand, the longer you’ll keep them engaged and connected.
5. Don’t be intrusive
The moment visitors enter the Red Mango USA website, they are welcomed (against their own will) by a pop-up video titled “What is Red Mango?”.
Interruptive marketing tactics such as pop-up videos are (for lack of a better word) annoying and unwanted. Marketers should always think like consumers. They should put themselves in the customers’ shoes and imagine how the customer is experiencing the brand.
As much as you want your customers to view your branded content and no matter how awesome you think the content is, being intrusive comes at the price of compromising the user experience. Consumers want to be in control, intrusive marketing tactics are unpleasant, unwelcome and such techniques undermine the customer’s sense of autonomy.
Thus, whilst Red Mango has created an effective and engaging UX across digital platforms for their customers overall, there are still areas which they can improve on.
In the era of digitalization and advanced technology, there is a pressing need and importance for Marketers to focus on perfecting the UX across digital platforms. In the 21st century, the brands who can master the art of UX across digital platforms will be well ahead of the game.