User-centered design is an iterative process whereby you take an understanding of the users, and their context, as a starting point for all design and development.
User Experience Design, or UX for short, is the process used at the forefront of the customer journey. It involves the design of the entire product such as branding, design, function and usability.
UX covers a vast array of areas, with our UX designers devoting themselves to the entirety of the product. We view the UX as a story that begins even before the target market picks up their device.
“No product is an island. A product is more than the product. It is a cohesive, integrated set of experiences. Think through all of the stages of a product or service – from initial intentions through final reflections, from first usage to help, service, and maintenance. Make them all work together seamlessly.”
— Don Norman, inventor of the term “User Experience”
A great product is not purely experienced in it's usage. For example, the awareness and desirability rise with brilliant user experiences. UX designers therefore focus on more than a usable product as important emotive considerations enter the design process- such as evoking fun, efficiency and satisfaction. There is no single definition of a 'good user experience' as good UX meets particular needs in a specific context when they use the product.
The Why, the what and the how
Three product use questions always prove vital.
Why focuses on the users' motivations for considering, and using the product. Whether they align themselves with a task associated to the app usage, or the views and values associated to the branding of the product.
What focuses on the the product usage. Core to the whole process is establishing what the product aims to do.
How focuses on the design, how users will navigate the product in an aesthetically pleasing and accessible way.
Our UX design process logically moves through each step to create meaningful experiences in well-thought out products.
As UX design covers the entire user journey, detailed thought is put in to who will use the product. Designing for human interaction means we have to consider accessibility considerations, such as potential physical limitations for some users. For example, a small text size may be unreadable for older users or a complex interface may overwhelm anyone that isn't tech-savvy. Whilst our UX designers tasks typically vary from project to project, user research and testing is always key. We design wireframes and interactive prototypes as well as creating personas to ensure our designs are executed to the highest standard.
Designers focus on keeping the user's needs at the center of all development and design efforts. This is why most of our UX designers also work with user-centered processes to keep revising their best efforts until all relevant issues and need are optimized.
It can be laid out as:
1. Understand context of use.
2. Specify user requirements.
3. Design solutions.
4. Evaluate against requirements and repeat steps 1,2,3 until evaluation meets all requirements.
It is important to consider the Minimum viable product (MVP), to streamline productivity and set building blocks in place for further improvements as customers adapt and troubleshoot with new products. Testing is key, and leaving scope for evolution allows us to not only see the big picture, but to dream the pictures of the future.
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