What does a UX designer really do?
User experience (UX) design is a must have for any company that wants to create solutions loved by users. But what is exactly user experience design and what does a UX designer do? There’s a lot of misconception around what it is and the role it plays. For this reason many companies don’t not fully exploit its potential and miss out on the chance to provide their users with a winning experience.
Is a UX designer also a graphic designer? can he help with branding?
To help you understand what you should ask your UX designer to do, let’s have a look at what UX design is and what a UX designer does.
What is UX design?
This video from Career Foundry is a great introduction to what UX design is. User experience is every interaction a user has with your product, brand or service. Every element can contribute to shaping the user experience. If you have an app, the user experience is what happens before the download of the app, when the user uses the app and after that.
The goal of UX design is to create meaningful solutions to users’ problems. This means an easy, efficient, relevant and all-round pleasant experience for users.
UX design is also referred to as product design, a trend started by Google.
What are the disciplines of UX design?
User experience is how your whole brand is experienced by users. This explains why UX is so strategic and it’s necessarily combined with other aspects that influence your brand.
As the graph above shows, UX embraces aspects of market research, marketing, product development and strategy. However, you will rarely find a UX designer who’s equally good at all the skills listed above.
UX design combines all these disciplines to create engaging user experiences and products or services that users want to use.
How is UX different from UI design?
“UX is focused on the user’s journey to solve a problem; UI is focused on how a product’s surfaces look and function.”
— Ken Norton, Partner at Google Ventures, Ex-Product Manager at Google
UX and UI design are often used together. However, they indicate two different things. User interface design (UI) refers to the interface a user sees. For example, the visual part of the screens of an app. UI is more related to the visual part and it embraces aspects like typography, colors and animation.
Since the interface of a product is so important for the user experience, UI and UX design are often combined. Many UX designers are also UI designers. But it doesn’t necessarily need to be this way.
UX design is on a more strategic level than UI design. UX designers often use design thinking to combine users’ needs, technical feasibility and business viability.
Credit: Career Foundry
Design thinking is an approach to problem solving that starts with empathizing and observing. It is an iterative process where the solution is identified starting from the users’ needs. In this process, the solution is then challenged and the problem often redefined. The goal is to achieve continuous improvement by identifying alternative strategies and solutions.
The value of UX design
Good UX design creates solutions that solve users’ needs. UX design is one of the business activities that generates higher return and its value is huge both for users as well as for business.
A good user experience is a strategic activity related to your brand and to your business KPIs. It creates high user engagement and high conversion rate.
If you want to read more on how good UX shapes the success of your product, check this article.