User experience (UX) design is far more than just creating aesthetically pleasing digital designs. It aims to provide intuitive products that are easy to use and keep people coming back.
Explaining UX design
The goal behind UX design is to elevate the user’s interaction with a company’s products and services. Its origins go back thousands of years, and it is concerned with layouts and ergonomics that make everything more efficient.
UX is different from UI (interface design) and many people confuse the two. They do go together, but UI is concerned with the typography, color palettes, touchpoint designs for navigation, and animations.
A few good examples of UX are the layouts of supermarkets and even the interaction between workers and their tools. This principle has been incorporated into the ease of navigating a website, accomplishing tasks on it, and the final checkout if the website sells something.
UX has a more digital meaning nowadays, and it refers to apps, websites, software, and technology.
The disciplines of UX design
There are four main disciplines within UX design:
Experience Strategy (ExS) is aimed at optimizing the business strategy by incorporating the customer’s needs and those of the company.
Interaction Design (IxD) takes all the design elements (animations, buttons, etc.) and incorporates them into an effortless user experience.
User Research (UR) identifies and solves problems through research with existing and potential customers. They look for usability issues, create users’ personas, and ponder how to meet the objectives of the end-user. The data they collect assist in making the best design decisions.
Information Architecture (IA) is used to organizing the information and content in a way that ensures the user can navigate their way around the product. The different sets of content and language used are scrutinized and rearranged to ensure they are consistent and convincing.
These four areas have a wide range of other disciplines within them which draw from a whole lot of elements to complete the UX experience.
How does the UX Design Process Work?
UX design uses a process known as a design thinking process. The first stage involves inspiration followed by conceptualization, iteration, and the exposition of the final product. The process goes from extensive research to creating personas, and finally, the design of prototypes. These are tested and presented to stakeholders before deciding on the final product.
UX Designer Tools
In the initial research and inspiration stage, UX designers use polling and survey tools to gather the relevant information. Wireframing, prototyping, and usability testing require specific programs that can meet the increasing demands placed on UX designers.
The growth of the tech industry requires UX designers to come up with mobile and website designs for an interesting variety of projects. These include voice design, virtual reality (VR), and augmented reality (AR). One important aspect of UX design includes service design to improve existing services in anything from public transport to hotels.
UX and its competitive advantage
The experts say good design is good for business because it increases customer satisfaction and builds brand loyalty. Users always return to services that give them an enjoyable and easy experience.
This has been proven in studies that surveyed companies on the S&P over ten years. Design-driven companies have a measurable competitive advantage with 41% higher market share, 46% competitive advantage, and 50% more loyal customers.
Creating a small business website
Small businesses that need a simple but effective website usually don’t have the time or resources to hire a professional website developer. Creating a website has become easier over the last few years, and small business owners can build one without needing to know how to code or the use of HTML and FTP.
Online website builders offer plans that range from free to very affordable because they are hosted in the cloud. GoDaddy reviews show it is one of the best small business website builders. These allow businesses to build websites that incorporate all the elements of successful UX design.
UX design optimizes the way digital products stand out and create value. This ensures it is a worthwhile investment for any business. People with experience in other fields often switch to UX design because it uses disciplines like psychology, marketing, customer services, and computer science. UX designers continue shaping the way websites become user-friendly and beneficial to consumers.