Designing with User in Mind

Until recently, web designers put the focus on aesthetics and the brand, when created UI, forgetting about the core principle of web design – user orientation.

At present, we experience a significant shift from designing self-righteous web pages to creating smooth and consistent user experience that for sure wins hearts of delighted users. In the article below, we provide the basic how-tos and useful techniques, you need to consider when plan to launch UI with user in mind.

Study Your Target Audience

Communicating with your audience is the first step to develop experiences reflecting the voice and emotions of your users. It is your existing and potential users, who can give comprehensive answers to the three critical questions:

  • What value does the solution give?
  • How should you deliver the content?
  • What should your app look like to be pleasant and easy to use?

Besides traditional interview, you can opt for alternative ways of effective communication with the target audience.

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Plan Carefully

The more complex and interaction-rich the system is, the more involved the design engineering has to be for it. Investing in considered user experience planning now, you will benefit from high traffic of grateful users afterwards.

Start with the time-honored hand-sketched drawings and proceed to the extended wireframes and working prototypes of every single page. Experiment with alternative interfaces to choose from, and before taking any design decision, make sure it goes in line with users’ expectations. Here at Itransition, we hold A/B testing to validate that a design decision produces positive results before making that change to the site code. An A/B test involves testing two or more design variants with live traffic and measuring the effect each one makes.

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Design UI

Now more than ever, in the world flooded with content noise, users need simple, yet sufficient systems of information. In this respect, we recommend you to focus on the following two cornerstones of UX design.

Minimalism

The balance between functionality and aesthetic is perfectly achieved by flat design that promotes only basic shapes and necessary elements in user interface.  Its greatest strength is clarity of form that makes the message clearer, and adaptability to every type of application (both desktop and mobile screen).

Consistency

Make sure your product or site follows a logical pathway. Each feature needs to be self-explanatory and approachable enough to seem enjoyable and feel like it is the best use of user’s time and efforts. For this purpose identify similar processes and put similar elements to similar places, so that people could act through intuition.

Gather Feedback

Web application release does not put the end to the design activities, but to the contrary, it opens up new opportunities for UX enhancement. By analyzing users’ feedback, you can obtain priceless insight into their experience that would help to polish the patterns, fix the slips, and adjust the UI to users’ changing priorities. Suggest short surveys and feedback forms, to gather feedback directly, or analyze web site activity by integrating the app with analytical tools.

Even though we promote simplicity and consistency to be a must of any interface, it doesn’t mean you can’t add appealing eye-candies. There is nothing wrong with catchy animations, parallax scrolling, slideouts and pop-ups: if used properly, they add life to a boring navigation process. However, the idea is to keep harmony of functionality and aesthetics, and design not for yourself, but for a user – your particular user with his own motivations and aspirations.