UX Audit Report Examples and Best Practices in Conducting the Audit
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Do you know what our brain is afraid of the most? Blindspots, unclarity, vagueness. Our brain seeks rules, patterns, and templates because they provide guidance and give us a feeling of confidence we’re going the right way. That’s why we like examples: it’s easier and more convenient to follow somebody’s successful experience and learn from someone else’s mistakes, no doubts.
So, if you understand that your product needs a UX audit, but you’ve never done it before, a spot-on UX audit report example can be very useful. With its help, you’ll get a clear picture of what you can get as a result of a user experience analysis and what form it may have.
Using our profound and versatile expertise in UX audits, we at Eleken are going to share with you UX audit reports practices that we use in our work. And of course, we’ll accompany them with real examples from our projects.
But first of all, let’s start with general but essential topics and figure out what benefit a user experience audit can bring to your business
Main reasons to conduct UX audit
Research made by Forrester states that every dollar you invest in UX brings $100 in return. And it’s only one of many reasons why it’s worth investing in UI/UX analysis. Here are some other visible benefits:
1. It helps identify problem areas.
A UX audit can help spot usability issues in a product, such as confusing navigation, poor information architecture, or complex user interfaces. By identifying these issues, businesses can take steps to improve the software so that it meets the needs and expectations of users better.
For example, Scandiweb, a digital strategy and web development company, conducted a website UI/UX audit and showed the world a real-life UX audit report example based on Jaguar online store analysis. For the comprehensive user experience analysis, they created a customer journey map, performed usability testing, analyzed the findings, and worked out recommendations based on the received insights.
And though the auditors emphasized that all the assumptions still should be validated with A/B tests to prove their success, the findings were crucial for the creation of improvement suggestions and the further improvement of the website's UX.
2. It improves user adoption.
A UX audit can help identify areas of the user flow that are confusing, unclear, or unnecessary, such as complex forms, unclear payment options, and other places where users may be losing interest in the product. By optimizing the user flow, users are more likely to be able to complete desired actions, such as signing up or purchasing a product, which will improve adoption.
For example, when Salesforce introduced its new Lightning UI, user feedback indicated that the excessive white space was the main obstacle to user adoption. So, the company wanted to create an experience that was at least as good as the previous version, while minimizing the impact on the development cycle and product teams. Although the solution to the problem seems quite simple, it required a deep product analysis. By thoroughly scanning the current version of the product, the Salesforce design team came up with actionable design solutions on how to improve the amount of white space and the density of information. As a result, user adoption of the Lightning UI increased significantly, which helped the company achieve its goal of having 6 million monthly active users by the end of the financial year.
3. It improves customer retention.
A good user experience is vital for retaining customers in the competitive SaaS market. By improving the product’s usability, your users are more likely to be able to complete their desired tasks more seamlessly, which can increase their satisfaction and retention.
According to recent research by Zendesk, up to 61% of customers are likely to switch to another product after just one negative experience. On the other hand, customers tend to remain loyal if they feel they are getting good value. Forbes states that 86% of customers are willing to pay more to receive better user experience.
4. It helps stay competitive.
In the dynamic SaaS industry, it's important to stay ahead of the competition. Conducting UX audits on a regular basis can help identify areas where a SaaS product is falling behind, allowing you to make improvements and remain on top.
Overall, a UI/UX audit is an essential tool for SaaS businesses to evaluate the user experience of their product, identify areas for improvement, and ultimately drive growth and success. Still, all the above-mentioned benefits don’t mean that user experience review is a silver bullet for each and every company on the market, so let’s define in what situation an audit may be helpful.
When does your SaaS need a UX audit?
For this section, we will try to be as laconic as possible, as the main goal of this article is to show you examples of conducting a UX audit and talk about best practices in the first place. When you want to learn more about how to conduct a UX audit, we discuss it in detail in our other article.
Here are four common situations your company may need an audit.
- When you’re launching a new product or feature. Analyzing your new solution for possible usability issues allows you to address them prior to the release, this way improving the overall user experience at a lower cost. A UX audit can also help ensure that the new feature you’re about to add is consistent with the existing product's design and that there will be no confusion coming from users.
- When responding to customer feedback. For example, if customers are complaining that a particular feature is difficult-to-use, a UX audit can help identify the specific pain points and recommend changes to the design that can make the feature more intuitive and user-friendly.
- When identifying areas for growth. By analyzing user data such as product analytics, businesses can gain insights into user behavior and identify areas where users may be dropping off or experiencing difficulties. Eliminating those frictions will improve user experience leading to increased user satisfaction and potential growth opportunities.
- When you’re about to redesign your solution. A product review can help identify potential pain points and usability issues with the existing design. This will result in a better redesign process that addresses all the existing issues.
Once you've identified that your SaaS product could benefit from a UX audit, the next step is to understand what to expect from the audit report. Here are essential components of a UX audit report with real-life examples.
UX audit report key components and best practices
A UX audit may involve a range of techniques and approaches depending on your needs and objectives, and that’s why the report may come in many different forms. Still, we can single out three essential components that almost each UX audit report would include.
At Eleken, we conduct a UX audit as a part of the UI/UX redesign process to reveal what our client’s users are struggling with, and what design solutions can improve the situation. So, typically our final report covers the following areas:
An overview of the current user experience
This part of a UX audit report typically provides a summary of the key findings and observations gathered during the audit process, highlighting both positive and negative aspects of the user experience. The overview may include information about the target users, their needs and goals, and how well the product is meeting those needs.
For instance, when conducting a UX audit for Acadeum, we were analyzing the app’s user flow, making notes of questionable areas directly on the software’s screenshots to get the list of UX troubles.
When redesigning Gridle, we visualized all our findings from user interviews with the help of an empathy map, a tool used in design thinking to gain a deeper understanding of the user's experience, identify areas for improvement, and create a more user-centered design.
There’re many other methods you can use in your report, such as user personas, which are fictional representations of typical users, based on research and data, or a summary of the user journey, which outlines the steps users take to achieve their goals while using the product.
A detailed analysis of the software's user interface
Another essential element of a UX audit report is the user interface analysis. It typically includes a comprehensive evaluation of the design elements, such as layout, typography, color scheme, and imagery. The report will show whether the design is consistent, visually appealing, and engaging for the user. It may also include an evaluation of the interface's usability, such as the ease of navigation, and the clarity of the information hierarchy.
In a report, a UI analysis may be presented with the help of heat maps that show where users click and how they commonly engage with the interface, accessibility evaluation that assesses the interface's compliance with accessibility standards, or user flows that depict how users navigate through the interface and identify areas of confusion or friction.
For instance, here’s the user flow we created for one of our clients, Abode, where we wanted to have a better understanding of what the Abode website lacked in terms of ease of navigation.
A list of recommendations for improving the software, including changes to the user interface, new features, or changes to the overall user experience
Finally, we need to form a detailed list of specific recommendations that address all the issues identified during the audit. These recommendations should be prioritized based on their impact and feasibility, and they should be actionable and concrete to guide the development and design teams.
To make the list easy to interpret, it’s important to structure the report logically, add visuals that illustrate each problem and keep every recommendation short, but clear. Let’s take a look at a design audit example we made for Textmagic, a customer experience platform.
Our task included analyzing three screens of the app, so we divided all recommendations into three groups accordingly.
In each group, we listed problem areas and solutions to them. We carefully labeled each issue with a short title, so that the client can instantly understand what we’re talking about. And of course, each recommendation has a briefly formulated problem, possible solution, and screenshots to illustrate our idea.
As a final point here, we’d like to state that if you’re afraid to miss something important in your user experience audit, try to use a UX design audit checklist. We created the one based on Jakob Nielsen's 10 Usability Heuristics. Heuristic evaluation is widely used when conducting UX audits by many UI/UX experts, including ourselves.
Tools for conducting the UX audit
As you may see, the final look of a UX audit report depends much on the methods that designers use for each specific case. Here are several tools that would make the creation of your audit report a much easier task.
- Hotjar provides interactive heat maps that show how users click, scroll, and move on a website. This helps to identify areas where users may be struggling or encountering issues with navigation or design. In addition to heat maps, Hotjar also offers session recordings, surveys, and real-time feedback pools, which can provide further insights into user behavior and preferences.
- Google Analytics. When conducting a UX audit, it is crucial to identify potential problem areas to enhance the overall user experience. In this regard, Google Analytics remains an essential tool, providing insights on user behavior such as website dwell time, page visits, missed pages, and common user flows.
- Mixpanel focuses on the actions users take on a website or app, providing insights into user behavior. It helps to answer questions like how many users clicked a certain button or used a certain feature, which can inform decisions about what changes to make to improve the user experience and increase conversion rates.
- Kissmetrics provides robust analytics and customer behavior reports. It allows to find out what features customers use the most, identify the most viewed pages, and discover weak points in the onboarding funnel.
- UXCam is a tool that allows you to capture and visualize user behavior on your website or mobile app. It helps UX designers to identify usability issues by providing session recordings, heat maps, and funnel analysis. The tool helps to understand what users are doing on the app or website, what they are struggling with, and where they are dropping off.
Thorough UX audit is the foundation of a successful redesign process
Though a UX audit is not a complete solution, it’s a crucial step in understanding the relationship between your product and its users. It helps identify issues or opportunities for improvement that can enhance the user experience.
Still, without it, it’s impossible to make a successful product revamp. That’s why as a team of SaaS product designers, we take UX audits very seriously.
- We start with diving deep into your app. We build user flow maps, and discuss functionality with your team to ensure we understand your business and your app perfectly well.
- Next, we conduct in-depth interviews with your customers and support teams to create a list of issues that users face when interacting with your software.
- Then we run a workshop with your product team to map out possible solutions and prioritize them to fit in your time and budget restraints.
- Finally, you end up with a detailed UX audit report that includes a thorough analysis with recommendations on how to make your product better (taking into account both your users’ needs and your business goals).
So, when you feel like you could use some help with the UX design audit, why not ask Eleken? Let us know if you need any assistance and we will get back to you shortly.