Alban is a serial entrepreneur and, while his first two companies didn’t have a long life, his 2014 launch of AlbanFootball has performed much better, currently shipping products to more than 30 countries. In true startup fashion it started from a problem: Football fans – Albanian football fans specifically – didn’t have a place to easily buy the merchandise of their national team. So Alban started an e-commerce web site to sell the national team’s merchandise to Albanians all around the world (as a huge number of them live outside of Albania).
Alban is a big believer in User Experience, and UX is a top priority for him. When we talk about UX we immediately think about design, and user flow, and UI. For Alban, design is not necessarily visual, but simply a way to solve a problem. For him UX goes beyond design, touching every business process:
- Clean Photography and design – This is something really important for his company and is deeply related to the user and how they perceive products that are sold online. In order to sell authentic products and for the user to feel the authenticity of products in an online environment, you need high quality photography.
- Customer Support – The reason Alban associates customer support with UX is because the way you treat your customers deeply affects the experience they’re going to have with the product. The better and quicker the support is, the better the experience becomes.
- Marketing – Being an e-commerce website does not mean that all you have to do is e-commerce. In order for the user to have a great experience you have to engage in communication and content marketing to keep the user more engaged and hopefully more satisfied.
- Get personal – From time to time, and especially in the early days of the business, Alban would personally calling customers to thank them for their order. It’s a great way to improve the User Experience and to get some feedback and use that to improve
These points come from an entrepreneur but they are true for any Product Manager. As PMs we have to pay attention and make sure that our product is being advertised in the right way, that our users are getting the best and quickest support possible, and that we provide different ways for our users to engage with our product. And we definitely have to get personal. We have to talk to users to get feedback, to get to know them and sometimes go beyond user research and just thank them.