Designers, a word of advice: if you want to get ahead in the world of UX design, you need to prioritize millennials.
Millennials – anyone born between 1982 and 2000 – are the first generation of digital natives and are arguably the most important consumer cohort for the tech industry.
According to Comscore’s annual mobile app report, logos matter and apps will be deleted if millennials don’t like how it looks on their screen. About 21% of these millennials eliminated apps from their phones this year while Generation X was more forgiving, with only 2% removing apps that had a design that didn’t appeal to them.
Designing apps for millennials:
1. efficient and on-demand
Having grown up in a world where technology is completely integrated into their everyday lives, millennials consume content differently to the generations before them. For instance, reading the newspaper, opening a bank account, ordering a takeaway, booking accommodation, listening to music etc., can now be done more quickly and with less effort using a connected device.
2. lightning-quick page speed
Nowadays, everyone’s in a hurry. And when it comes to the success of your site or app, page speed and performance play a significant role. In fact, according to Google, high performing sites engage and retain users better than poorly performing ones do.
It needs to be fast
Millennials have absolutely no tolerance for things that are slow. With every brand courting them, and offering other experiences they can choose to spend their attention on, there is absolutely no chance they will stick around for an experience that doesn’t load quickly.
Optimizing your product for speed is vital. If it’s a video, consider uploading to a platform like Vimeo, or YouTube. If you’re running a publication you should be optimizing your website for Google AMP, and Facebook Instant. Anything that can make each experience they have with your product, wherever they’re coming from, fast, and satisfying puts you in a position to satisfy a millennial audience.
3. mobile optimize your product
Millennials are the smartphone generation. As a millennial myself, I know I almost exclusively listen to music, listen to podcasts, use apps, read articles, and surf the web on my phone. On top of that, it’s almost always while I’m doing something else like commuting, or streaming something on another device.
If you are targeting a millennial audience, there is absolutely no excuse for not building your site to be optimized for mobile. In fact, you probably want to consider building your site first, and foremost for mobile, then adapting it for the desktop. That’s how important that platform is to this audience.
4. Success is pursued.
We live in a world where companies such as Facebook, Pinterest and Snapchat have not only created new marketplaces, but have set a course to change our economy and the world we live in. In each of these companies, millennials serve as both founders and leaders. They aren’t afraid to try platforms such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo in order to have their ideas heard – or companies launched.
They are the consumers you want to test your product or service and provide real, honest feedback based off their experiences and views on what would and wouldn’t be a success in the market. After all, they know what this generation wants more than anybody. As millennial designers or business leaders use these platforms, it gives them the chance to chase their dreams and what they want to accomplish out of life.
Especially in the world of design, nothing is handed to a designer or comes easy, but taking a risk is what life is all about to this generation. Failing is not an option – as millennials have relentless personalities.
5. Social media is used as an outlet to express opinions.
Millennials take to social media for nearly everything – and that includes advocating or critiquing opinions in real-time. More than any other generation, millennials rely on each other and share opinions with friends and family to make more informed decisions. An instant posting that can reach all corners of the world is causing companies to rethink their approach to launching products as well as being far more concerned on what people are saying about their products, company culture and how they are impacting the environment. They review, blog and post YouTube and Instagram videos showcasing products or services they love and hate. In addition, they do most of their research online before purchasing a product or service. They have tablets and smartphones at their fingertips. Brands that have a social media presence and an intuitive website have a greater chance of gaining a successful following.
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