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The term user experience or UX is widely used in the IT world by online entrepreneurs, but what does it mean?

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If you want to learn what UX is all about, we are here to give you an in-depth explanation of the topic.

The online world is constantly evolving, but this does not necessarily mean that it is becoming more complicated.

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Thanks to user experience design and testing, you can create websites and applications that are user-friendly and engaging.

Just take a look at how everyone is using Facebook or Google.

Both of them know what you need, and you are rarely confused while using them, all thanks to UX.

Websites and platforms are improving and becoming more sophisticated.

Whether you are an online entrepreneur, product manager, startup, product designer, or the head of an organization, you can turn UX to your advantage.

UX Is The Science Behind Good Design

Before users buy anything online, they need to interact with an interface.

The whole process of looking for a product or service, buying it, and benefitting from it is the ”experience” part.

The better the overall experience, the more likely it is for potential customers to purchase something.

This is why it is so beneficial for companies to work on user experience. But what can be defined as a β€œgood experience”?

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It turns out that users consider it reasonable if it manages to solve at least one of their problems. A good website, product, or service is focused on providing value.

Moreover, a website or any other online platform has to find the sweet spot between art and design.

Skill means that what the user is looking at is aesthetically pleasing, whereas design means utility. By hitting that sweet spot, you can create an effective online entity in terms of user interaction.

The UX Design Process In A Nutshell

User experience is the complete process that enables you to create a good design. By implementing various tools and methods, you can gain insight and collect plenty of data.

Using this information, you will be able to make the right decisions regarding product design.

But how do you start this process, and what are the most critical factors here?

First off, you might not even need to go through the whole process. You can consider UX as a toolkit and just pick the tool you need depending on the project you are working on.

Now we will introduce you to the basics that you can use later as a checklist to go through whenever you are working on user experience.

We will explain the 4 UX fundamentals below and then go through some of the tools and methods that can come in handy.

1. User Behavior

Image Source: Dribbble

What makes the design process complex is that you need to understand how people think.

The first thing is to identify the different behaviors they are engaging in while trying to find a solution to their problem. They want to satisfy their needs, and they need to be offered simple ways to do so.

For example, when looking for a good restaurant, we can just ask Google or open a platform to see recommendations. The results are available in under a minute.

Therefore, people are a massive part of the equation when it comes to user experience design.

Finding a way to communicate with them or collect data about their needs is crucial. This can get you the insight you need to develop user-friendly solutions and effectively solve their problem.

Start learning about user behavior with the following tools and methods:

  • Task analysis – Collect data about how users go through tasks that lead to accomplishing their goals. You are going to construct an algorithm that breaks the whole process down into individual steps. A great example is observing how people file their taxes with all the paperwork and mailing included. This part of UX can give you great ideas about how to design the same process online.
  • Conducting interviews – If it works for journalists, it can work for UX designers as well. You can uncover a great deal of information by collecting qualitative data from users. This type of information is hard to measure, yet it can reveal how users feel about the product.
  • Customer journey mapping – It is crucial to map out how users interact with a product or service and how each interaction impacts their behavior. You can analyze their journey from the beginning to the end. As a result, you can rate your product design according to how satisfied your users were.
Image Source: Capturly 

The ability to collect data, analyze and communicate with your designer team will accelerate your projects and help you to reach your goals.

Coming up with a thorough plan and making sure everyone is on the same page can make a huge difference.

It is a team effort to collect data about common trends and patterns with the help of screen-sharing tools.

Using heat maps and session replay tools is essential if you want to understand how users see your product or service.

  • Heatmaps:

Heatmaps are data visualization tools that show you where visitors clicked, how far they scrolled down, or how visitors from different devices (desktop, tablet, phone) or browsers behaved on your website in an aggregate way.

Heatmaps summarize users’ decision-making processes and expose powerful indicators to help business owners find out which elements of their website are the most popular, what should be developed.
  • Session replay:

With session replays, all website activities will be recorded. You can find out if your visitors have any issues with your website and monitor every interaction qualitatively.

This may include things like:

  • Clicks
  • Mouse motions
  • Scrolls
  • Fills

It enables you to comprehend the people behind the numbers and make choices based on facts rather than guesswork.

2. Developing Your Strategy

In user experience design, the customer comes first. Your customers want to achieve need to align with your business goals.

This is how the best design solutions are born that can truly help people in orienting themselves towards their goals.

Image Source: UX Planet

Every good UX strategy includes effective communication with the developer team. As they understand the weak points of existing products and processes, they can start improving them accordingly.

In UX, there is also something referred to as user empathy, which is turning user needs into solutions.

To meet the needs of your users, you need to do some research. A UX design team has to see their product from the user’s perspective and understand all the needs and frustrations.

The first step toward conducting thorough research is to start asking the right questions.

Once you have the answers, you can go through the list of problems and solve them one by one. Asking the following questions will help you come up with the right strategy:

  • What characterizes your target audience?
  • What is your user base trying to achieve?
  • How do their goals and motivations make them feel?
  • Can you identify a transparent process that leads to the solution?
  • What do users expect to see when they land on your website?
  • Are your assumptions about your users justifiable?
  • Did you set your own needs aside to focus on the needs of your users?
  • How do you want your users to get from point A to point B?

3. The Usability Of Your Design

An eye-catchy design that is also made according to the latest design trends is not necessarily a good one. From the user experience standpoint, usability is much more important than aesthetics.

You can easily fall into the mistake of implementing design ideas that make it harder for users to solve their problems.

Good design is about functionality and showing that you understand the needs of your target audience.

Once your design is usable, you can add some eye-catchy animations, texts, and other extras that do not sabotage it. Or you can even find a custom web design agency on the market to help you out.

Remember, while all this might sound simple, there is a strong connection between usability and psychology.

You can only start simplifying things if you understand that there is a complexity behind them.

For example, digital products often resemble sliders and buttons that people got used to in their everyday lives.

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You also need to take into account that not everyone is computer savvy. Despite that, people have an inherent sense of how things should work. You can turn this to your advantage and give them something they can quickly get used to.

4. User Experience Validation

User experience validation is when you test the product with users after it is finished. It is still not live to the public, but there is plenty of room for improvement that can be exploited.

Image Source: UXEva
Companies are often in a hurry to make their products live, although they could gain a significant edge by testing.

Testing can reveal problems in front of your eyes the whole time, yet you still overlooked them. The considerable benefit of fixing issues before going live is that you will not lose users that would otherwise run into them.

Most people do not have much tolerance for bugs, and they are going to look elsewhere instead.

UX design is, therefore, an investment that is worth every penny.

After all the changes are applied, you can validate that everything works as it should and finally publish your product.

When it comes to user experience validation, there is a wide range of tools to choose from. First, you need to think about how much time and money you want to set aside for testing. It would simply take too long to leave your developer team guessing.

In the end, there is a high chance that they will not even find all the problems. You can use the following methods in your UX validation process:

  • Smokescreen test – This is a great way to determine how much users are interested in your product. For example, one approach is to just publish a landing page with the option to sign up for your newsletter. You can use any other call to action to measure their interest at the beginning.
  • A/B testing – You can perform A/B testing as part of the design process. Give users different versions of the same web page and interview them. Each iteration can bring you closer to a well-designed final product.
  • Prototype testing – This is the end of the design process when you can offer users a finished prototype to interact with. You can watch them as they try to navigate the interface and draw valuable conclusions in the process.

The beauty of user testing is that it does not require dozens of feedbacks since it provides a qualitative result instead of quantitative.

Summing Up

UX is the science of ethical influence. It assists you in simultaneously comprehending the sense and feeling of your users.

Whether you are an online entrepreneur, product manager, startup, product designer, or the head of an organization, you can turn UX to your advantage.

But in order to take full advantage of the user experience, you need to test in the UX design process.

Once you understand how people think and get to know your user personas, you can start working on your strategy.

While developing it, communication and research are essential to creating a user-friendly design.

Do not forget, good design is about functionality and showing that you understand the needs of your target audience.

To correctly complete the whole user experience testing process, perform a customer experience validation.

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