With the rise of e-commerce and the proliferation of social media platforms, it’s evident that a digitally native world is just around the corner. As the demand for all things digital continues to rise, so does the desire for technological and design innovation.
As virtual evolution becomes more significant as a result of new forms of VR/AR technology disrupting the internet arena, user experience has become increasingly important as we develop our relationships with new technologies. It’s no wonder that user experience has become a hot topic among virtual reality professionals as new software continues to expand the potential of digital immersion.
Traditional types of marketing are becoming obsolete as consumers change from users to players as the metaverse era unfolds. Read on to learn how the metaverse could revolutionize UX design in ways never seen before, from content creation and 3D tools to new communication interfaces that encourage immersion.
What Is The Metaverse?
So, what exactly is a metaverse? We’ve all heard the term flung around on digital platforms and at Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta reveal, but what does it mean for the UX designers who will be responsible for paving the road for the future of efficient online marketing?
Neal Stephson’s science fiction novel Snow Crash, published in 1992, was the first to use the phrase metaverse. He prophesied that one day, technology would allow us to live in a real-time, online environment where we might evolve, grow, and communicate. He used the term “metaverse” to represent his vision of a 3D world in which users may virtually inhabit.
The metaverse is now defined by the Influencer Marketing Hub as “something that is always active, exists in real-time, players have individual agency, it’s a self-contained and fully functional universe, and incorporates user-generated content.”
As we play around with the move from consumers to players in an online world driven by user-generated content, it’s apparent that the metaverse will continue to change consumer attitudes and demand a more active user experience design across a variety of industries.
It’s evident that the metaverse expects more of marketers, from e-commerce and the corporate market to gaming and entertainment, but how much could this alter the industry?
What Impact Will It Have On Marketing In The Future?
The metaverse might be a game-changer for savvy marketers when it comes to garnering online exposure and increasing income. As virtual reality continues to find its way into a variety of industries throughout the world, the metaverse’s advertising potential is limitless.
Prioritizing new kinds of immersive design and smart consumer content that can not only readily integrate itself into the virtual environment but also encourages consumers to participate and communicate with it is the key here.
For corporations looking to acquire visibility, the benefits swiftly exceed the costs, especially for Gen Z demographics, where 87 percent of young people are already interacting with current metaverse platforms such as Fortnite from the convenience of their smartphones. In fact, delivering an immersive metaverse experience that allows a player to engage and interact with a virtual version of a product or service will result in better real-world conversion rates.
For example, Dimension Studio, a London-based startup fashion business, saw its sales treble in 2021 after experimenting with new types of UX marketing in the metaverse. One of the earliest pioneers in the future of 3D forms of UX design is the User Experience-focused company specializing in the future of volumetric content and producing immersive experiences within the metaverse.
They collaborated with Balenciaga’s Afterworld game to create a new type of virtual production that allowed players to physically test out Balenciaga’s items on their augmented avatars by stepping onto a platform within a virtual environment.
Dabbling in the metaverse has resulted in $6.5 million in income, thanks to the use of new forms of 3D UX design.
What Does This Imply for User Experience Designers?
In the wake of the metaverse, it’s evident that UX designers will need to change their approach. Rather than creating for passive consumption, the future will focus on active design, which invites customers to interact with their creations and blurs the barriers between real and virtual reality.
The Transition From Users to Players
Consumers will need to be seen as players, not just users of technology, by designers.
UX designers must build a fully immersive experience that allows a player to live and engage with a virtual environment rather than merely experiencing it in order to increase user experience across online platforms.
Even outside of metaverse world-building, immersive design will be required for all sorts of user experiences. This holds true for web design, content creation, and advertising as well. Designers must work on smoothly placing a product, service, or advertisement within the metaverse as the border between virtual and real continues to blur. Consumers are more inclined to interact with UX design that feels natural, real, and made by them.
As technology advances, metaverse players will become more intelligent. It’s past time for modern marketers and designers to up their game.
How To Make The Metaverse’s UX Design Better
So, how do you get started with metaverse design? Although a totally virtual world is only a few years away, UX designers still have time to prepare. As metaverse design continues to transform the business, here are some tweaks you may apply to your UX endeavor.
Begin telling a story with your design
The metaverse is huge, and it’s just going to get bigger in the coming years. With a broad following comes a wide range of experiences from a wide range of consumers. The challenge for UX designers is to link all of these user experiences into a compelling tale that attracts attention among rivals.
As a result, it’s time to start making storytelling a priority in your material. Telling a story with your design can not only engage your consumers but will also divert them from a product or service, resulting in a more natural consumer-led experience with your brand.
Even better, figure out how to incorporate your user experience design into their existing virtual storytelling. Find a technique to sell or advertise your product or service using an existing metaverse story.
For example, skating brand Vans inserted a skatepark into the metaverse for players to interact with during their own virtual narratives on gaming platforms such as Roblox. Story integration can be regarded as a vital approach for UX designers after observing 48 million visitors that increased revenue for the company outside of the metaverse.
Take a seat and observe
Since the metaverse is still in its infancy, new UX designers would be well to take a step back and watch.
Examine your competition more closely and begin user testing. Using tools like Google Analytics and Finteza to evaluate your existing engagement data, audience characteristics, and site analytics is a wonderful way to start.
Designers must consider how their target audience interacts with the metaverse today, as well as how their products will perform in new virtual environments.
Incorporating 3D tools and virtual reality design
UX professionals are turning to new 3D modeling options like Tvori and SketchUp to improve modeling and prototyping in a 3D virtual world in order to properly design for the metaverse.
It’s also critical for UX and UI designers to become more familiar with the latest VR/AR technology. Designers will be able to step into the shoes of their customers and imagine the image they want to build for immersion success by incorporating parts of augmented and virtual reality into everyday life.
The Metaverse’s Future
Did you know that 58 million individuals in the United States use some sort of AR/VR technology at least once a month?
Traditional tactics of marketing aren’t cutting it anymore as the desire for virtual immersion online grows in lockstep with the metaverse. If you want to stay ahead of your online competitors, interactive experiences and communication are now required, and UX design is at the forefront of this.
The metaverse is projected to alter consumer advertising and interaction design within the next 5 years, thanks to Facebook’s 2021 Meta branding and gaming platforms like Fortnite and Roboblox paving the way.