You may have come across the term ‘User Experience‘, or more popularly known as UX in the designing world. In terms of web designing, the word is used as a standard now to define the ease of usability by a customer. Numerous studies have shown that consumers are willing to pay more for a product or service, when there’s a better user experience for them. This gives businesses a chance to go that extra mile in satisfying their customers and standing apart from the competition. One can create a similar product or service, but you can’t replicate a great user experience.
But what is user experience exactly? And how can it be used to create a flawless design process? Read on to know more.
What is User Experience?
Have you ever wondered how similar products make you feel differently than each other? While one of them may be a delight to use, the usage of the other could be frustrating.
Thus, the feelings that a certain product invokes in the user is known as user experience. It goes beyond User Interaction, and includes all aspects of a customer’s experience with a product, including the design, interface, graphics, and physical experience.
Though the term means different things across diverse industries, it’s used in the digital world to define how a user interacts with a website or web-based product. It has become a fundamental aspect of web designing and can greatly contribute to your product’s success or failure. Here’s how UX is used in a design project:
UX in Design
When we talk about designing, UX includes a number of things like human-machine interaction, visual design, information architecture, interaction design, and usability. In simpler words, user experience refers to a design that improves customer satisfaction by providing them with value, utility, and pleasure when they’re interacting with a product.
But how can you create a great user experience? The answer is a multipronged approach that designers around the world use at multiple stages when designing a website. UX is used by designers at various stages of creating a product, from understanding their audience’s needs to conducting user testing to ensure that their product will truly resonate with its customers.
The elements of user experience in design can be compartmentalized into various stages, which are discussed in detail below:
The first step in any UX design, user research helps designers to tune their products as per the needs of their customers. User research is a never-ending process that aims to enhance the usability of a product and provide greater satisfaction to the end user.
But, to create a product with flawless UX, one needs to understand the needs, pain points, and challenges of the end users. User research can be done via reviews, interviews, surveys, polls, etc.
The designers then go on to create user personas and mapping, which is basically segregating your users into various types and at different phases in the purchasing journey.
Information architecture is the second step in creating flawless user experiences. Once you have an understanding of your users, it’s time to organize information in a way that is easy to find and navigate by the end user. This is a particularly essential step in web design projects, where the data is collected in a way that users can go from one page per feature of a website to the other without any hassle.
Information architecture makes navigation easy and intuitive. The buyer personas discussed above play a great role in creating information architecture.
Visual design refers to the aesthetics of a product, or in other words, the look and feel of a product. This includes visually pleasing features such as the colors used in a website, the layout of the pages, fonts, and other design elements that help the users to interact with your product.
In web designing, designers create wireframes and prototypes to test these visual design concepts through the lens of their customers.
Usability constitutes the ease with which a person can access the product. It refers to the degree to which any product is used by the target audience which helps them fulfill their needs and expectations.
Any product with great usability doesn’t nust include accessing information, but also the ability of the user to repeat those actions by familiarizing with the process.
Accessibility differs from usability, in the sense that it entails the rate at which a disabled person can use a certain product. In terms of web designing, accessibility could include voice-based interface for visually impaired individuals, or enlisting larger and more prominent fonts for the elderly.
Why is UX an Inherent Part of Designing?
UX mapping has become an inherent part of product designing due to the number of benefits they offer:
Better Product Market Fit
Ascertaining product market fit is a challenge even for a standard product. UX helps you to test prototypes with your users before you deploy them in the market.
Improved Customer Retention
With better user experience, your customers will be more satisfied with your products, thereby improving retention.
Optimized Development Phase
Once you know what features are a hit and what are not, you can proceed with the development of the product with lesser costs.
When your customers are able to find the information they’re looking for with ease, they’re more likely to buy from you and convert from your audience to your customer.
Greater Brand Image
When a brand invests in optimizing its products to increase user satisfaction and experience, their image naturally improves with the audience establishing the brand as more trustworthy.
User Experience is What Sets you Apart
A great user experience defines a product’s success or failure. Investing time and efforts in UX could be elaborative, but it’ll surely reap you rewards in the long haul.
And in the world of web designing, the whole point of innovating concepts is to fulfill and satisfy your customer’s needs and provide them with a flawless user experience.