It’s becoming clear that the digital native world is just around the corner, as e-commerce explodes and social media platforms grow. The demand for digital innovation and tech is growing at an alarming rate.
Virtual evolution is becoming more prominent due to new forms of VR/AR tech revolutionizing the online world. User experience has become a key component in our relationships with new technology. Virtual reality experts are increasingly interested in UX as new software expands the capabilities of digital immersion.
Traditional marketing methods are becoming obsolete as consumers shift from being users to being players in the metaverse era. Read on to learn how the metaverse will change UX design in a way that encourages immersion.
What is the Metaverse?
What is the metaverse, you ask? The term metaverse has been used a lot on tech platforms, and at Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta reveal. But what does it actually mean for UX designers who will be responsible for paving the way for effective online marketing?
In 1992, in Neal Stephson’s science fiction novel Snow Crash, the term metaverse was first used. He used the term metaverse to describe his vision of a 3D environment in which users could exist. He predicted that technology would eventually allow us to live in an online environment where we could grow, change and interact.
The Influencer Marketing Hub describes the metaverse in modern-day terms as “something that’s always active, exists continuously, has individual agency, is the self-contained and fully functional universe, and contains user-generated material.”
We are experimenting with the shift from consumers to online players in an environment dominated by user-generated content. It is clear that the metaverse will continue changing consumer attitudes and requiring a more active user experience design across many sectors.
It’s evident that marketers expect more from the metaverse, from e-commerce to the corporate market to gaming, entertainment, and beyond. But how could this transform the industry?
What It Will Do To Marketing’s Future?
Smart marketers will find the metaverse a great way to increase exposure and revenue online. The metaverse has endless advertising potential as VR continues to fit into many sectors around the world.
This is where the key lies in prioritizing immersive design and smart consumer content. These can be used to not only insert themselves into the virtual world but also encourage interaction and communication between consumers and it.
Of Gen Z users, 87% of them are already playing Fortnite on their smartphones. This is a huge advantage. Offering a rich experience in the metaverse that allows players to interact with virtual versions of products or services will result in higher conversion rates.
Dimension Studio, a London-based startup fashion agency, saw its profits increase by doubling in 2021 due to its experimentation with UX marketing in the metaverse. One of the pioneers of 3D UX design is Dimension Studio, a User Experience-focused company. They specialize in creating immersive experiences in the metaverse and the future volumetric content.
They partnered with Balenciaga’s Afterworld game to create a new type of virtual production. This allowed a player on a platform in a virtual environment to physically test Balenciaga’s pieces using their augmented avatars.
They have made $6.5 million by using new 3D UX design techniques to their advantage and dabbling in the metaverse.
Cathy Hackl, a Metaverse expert, commented on the success and said that marketing and advertising must be viewed in 3D.
Hackl stated that professionals today must think in 3D as the future professionals will be thinking in 3D. Agents will need to work with people who have experience in game design and game theory. They will need people who not only can create beautiful things but also know how to make them work in a gamified manner inside virtual worlds.
What does this mean for UX designers?
In the wake of the metaverse, it is clear that UX designers must shift their mindset. The future of UX design will not be passive consumption. Instead, the active design will encourage consumers to create and blur the boundaries between real and virtual.
Moving from Users to Players: Technology users will be viewed as players by technology professionals.
UX designers must create an immersive experience that allows players to interact and live in virtual worlds, to enhance user experience on online platforms.
Immersive design must be applied to all forms of UX, including metaverse world-building. This is true for website design, content creation, and advertising. Designers must focus on seamlessly inserting products, services, or advertisements within the metaverse as the line between real and virtual continues to blur. UX design that feels authentic, natural, and consumer-created is more appealing to consumers.
Technology continues to make metaverse players smarter. Designers and modern marketers need to be smarter.
Improve UX Design for The Metaverse
How can you prepare for metaverse design? Although a fully virtual world is not yet possible, UX designers have plenty of time to adapt. These are some of the changes you can make to your UX project as metaverse design continues its revolution in the industry.
Tell Stories With Your Design
The metaverse is huge and will only grow in the future. A large audience means a variety of experiences for a wide range of consumers. UX designers must find a way to connect these user experiences in order to tell a compelling story to attract customers.
It’s time for you to prioritize storytelling in your content. To increase awareness and exposure, tell a story through your design to engage your customers. This will allow them to forget about a product or service, which will make it more natural for them to interact with your brand.
Even better, you can learn how to integrate your UX design into their existing virtual stories. Use an existing metaverse narrative to promote or advertise.
Vans, a skateboarding brand, introduced a skatepark to the metaverse on gaming platforms like Roblox. The skatepark was only there for users to interact during their own virtual narratives. Story integration is a key strategy for UX designers after the brand saw 48 million people.
Sit Back And Observe
It is still a relatively new concept, so it would be smart for UX designers to just observe.
Start user testing and take a look at your competition. A great foundation for success is to perform an audit of your current engagement stats and audience characteristics using tools like Google Analytics or Finteza.
Designers must understand the current interactions of their audience with the metaverse in order to predict how their products will perform in new virtual environments.
Incorporating 3D Tools & VR Design
UX professionals are looking for new 3D modeling options such as SketchUp and Tvori to help them design in the metaverse.
UX and UI designers need to be more familiar with new VR/AR tech. Designers can use elements of virtual and augmented reality in their daily lives to help them visualize the immersive experience they desire.
The Future of Metaverse
Traditional marketing methods are no longer relevant as virtual immersion online continues its growth in line with the metaverse. UX design is at the forefront of interactive experiences and communication if you want your online business to be ahead of its competitors.
The metaverse will transform interaction design and consumer advertising within 5 years, thanks to Facebook’s 2021 Meta Rebrand and gaming platforms like Fortnite and Roblox.
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