UX ROI: 8 ways to measure UX return on investment

While some aspects of UX may be more challenging to quantify than others, a wealth of measurable data can demonstrate the impact of investing in UX.

User Research
UX Design
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Linn Legros
Co-Founder & UX Consultant
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UX as a business strategy

Many execs have talked about the long-term strategic value of UX and its positive impact on business results, and we've seen how companies with a strong focus on UX tend to outperform their competitor over time. But what methods are used to measure the true ROI of investing in user experience?

This article shows how results from monitoring and analysing key metrics can help determine the positive ROI of UX and make the case for its continued investment.

Comparing against competitors

In UX research, we use competitive benchmarking to measure a product's relative performance against market standards.

By analysing your competitors' product strategy, experience, and performance compared to yours, you can identify areas for improvement and measure the ROI of your UX investment.

Comparing before and after

To determine if your UX investment is worth it, test your product and compare the measures and feedback you get before and after implementing UX improvements.

Depending on what you're comparing, you can use different methods, such as usability testing, user surveys, A/B testing, and so on. This allows you to quantify the impact of UX changes on metrics such as conversion rates, error or churn rates, task completion times, or user satisfaction scores.

Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)

CLV measures the total value that a customer brings to an organisation over the course of their relationship with that organisation: this can include revenue generated by combining their repeat purchases, upsells, cross-sells, referrals, and other revenue streams they generate.

Because UX influences customer behavior, we begin to measure whether increases in CLV and the associated revenue generated over time can be attributed to improvements in the user experience.

UX drives business success. By measuring metrics like CLV, NPS, conversion rates, and cost reductions, companies can quantify the ROI of investing in user experience, ensuring continued growth and competitiveness.

Net Promoter Score (NPS)

NPS is a metric used to measure customer loyalty and satisfaction based on their likelihood to recommend a company's product or service to others, typically through a "How likely would you be to recommend [product/service] to a friend or colleague? - type survey.

By subtracting the percentage of detractors (scores 0-6) from the percentage of promoters (scores 9-10), you calculate your NPS score, which ranges from -100 to +100.

Monitor changes in NPS scores over time to measure the impact of UX improvements on customer loyalty and advocacy. The higher the score, the greater the satisfaction with the overall user experience.

Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)

When users are tracked for specific actions, such as signing up, purchasing an item, or submitting a form, the impact of UX improvements can be measured by the increase in conversion rates, or the percentage of users who take that action.

By tracking changes in conversion rates and revenue generated, you can quantify the ROI of UX improvements in terms of increased sales, subscribers, app downloads, leads, and so on.

Customer Support and Service Costs

Companies' investment in user experience is usually justified by the idea that it will reduce the cost of customer support and service teams in the long run. The more intuitive the product, the less likely customers are to request a demo or submit another support ticket.

By tracking changes in call volume, ticket resolution times, and support team efficiency, you can assess whether the UX investment in reducing user friction and improving self-service was worth it.

Employee Productivity and Efficiency

When you invest in a great user experience for your internal tools, the ROI is typically measured directly in terms of employee productivity, workflow efficiency, and job satisfaction.

Metrics such as task completion times, error rates, overall usability, and employee satisfaction are the best ways to quantify the ROI of UX investments.

Market Share and Competitivity

Shifts in market share, conversion rates, customer satisfaction, audience size, and brand perception relative to your competitors can all be measured to determine if there is a positive ROI from improving your product's user experience and thereby justify your continued investment to solidify your market position and competitiveness.