Lower attrition rates are one of the primary goals of established companies, concerning established products or services. It’s something that everyone faces, as an initial boom of customers sees shrinkage in numbers and reduced lifetime per customer, even if there is a growth of new customers. This can cause a plateau of net gain, or long term losses depending on ratios. Attrition rates are unavoidable to some level, as some customers are attracted by novelty or by short term economic growth. As a result, they may abandon your product or service when the novelty expires, or when they no longer see it as a justified expense when money gets tight.
These are not things that can be addressed in lower attrition rates because they’re ineffable human nature that cannot be overridden. But what about the other factors that contribute to attrition? People often do not realize that a lot of attrition can be directly correlated to user experience, and in a number of ways. As a result, the best way to combat attrition is through improved positive UX. We can’t presume to make UX suggestions on a direct level here, as that is very specific to industries, product/service identities and corporate cultures (fail to mention the whole mess of demographics). We can however illuminate this a bit by talking about why this correlation exists, and why improving UX can help reduce the problem.
Let’s take a scenario is in software regarding user experience. When a new kind of software comes out, or software is released introducing a clever new feature that competitors do not have, it will see rapid migration and adoption out of the gate. However, in a case where the user experience doesn’t age well, or isn’t really that great past the novelty of the new features or functionality, a problem will arise. Other companies will eventually adopt the features or functionality you have introduced, but they will likely polish their UX in light of seeing your UX for what it really is. When this happens, users will migrate to something that matches your functionality, but with an overall more solid UX. So, with that in mind, being proactive about your UX, and polishing existing functionality and features to be as solid as what novelty you bring is the first step in ensuring reduced attrition across the board.
It’s all about keeping a customer after you hook them. Companies make the mistake of relying on solidarity and superiority, in hopes that initial adoption will ensure a reluctance in customers to migrate to other services which improve on your UX concept. This has proven true in disparate cases, but this is not the norm. In actuality, customers aren’t as easy to become complacent and set in their ways as one may be wont to think. Therefore, the key to combating attrition is to ensure that your UX is the best it can be, and that all aspects of this, be it interface, usability, aesthetics and logic all meet the highest, most polished standards imaginable. This means that, for lower attrition rates, a little vanity and polish is actually kind of crucial.