One of the defining characteristics of the XXI century is the fact that people are interacting increasingly with technology, a phenomenon that is growing year after year and will continue to grow for sure.
However, the vast majority of people want to experience technology and to enjoy their benefits without spending too much of their time in it, or without having to devote too much intellectual effort in it. They want to keep it simple, fast, friendly and effective.
This same question applies to websites and apps. People will always prefer apps and websites that are friendlier, easier to use and to understand, and more effective in its results. That is when the question of User Experience, or UX, as it is popularly known, comes to play.
The importance of UX design
Hence, the current framework of digital transformation, in which the use of apps by companies and organizations from the private and public sector for delivering day life services to people is rapidly increasing, is pushing them to pay more attention to final customer’s satisfaction and comfort, when it comes to app or website interface.
Moreover, computing is nowadays playing a big role in communications, and therefore UX is gaining greater importance on app and website development, in order to improve, not only user experience in what regards to quality content, accessibility, and other important features, but also, in what regards to emotions, user´s confidence and feelings about software product, and so on.
What the experts say about the role of UX design
According to UX design experts Caio Braga and Fabricio Teixeira, in the vast majority of cases, customers and users expect straightness and simpleness when it comes to using apps or websites. When they find obstacles and difficulties, they use to get disappointed quickly, like for example, what happens with product backlogs. When that occurs is very probable that you will lose potential customers and, what is worse, potential revenue.
In conclusion, UX is about how customers feel when interacting with any kind of software or hardware product. Hence, the aim of UX design must have the goal of fulfilling user needs.
When the user has a positive, friendly, and enjoyable experience that will help to keep him loyal to our product or brand, or, in the case of potential customers, a good UX design will help to achieve more traffic –in the case of websites- and then more conversions.
The concept of usabillity
That been said, for a better understanding of the logic underlying UX design, it is important also to understand the concept of Usability, as a part of the broader concept of UX.
It is said that an app or a website has a good level of usability, when it is easy for the user to become familiar with it, as well as competent in using it, reaching to the point of remembering rapidly how to use its interface in further visits, and most important, it is considerably uncomplicated to realize their goal when using it. Any efforts in UX design always must try to achieve those goals.
When and how it is better to improve your UX design?
Usually, businesses start to worry about usability and UX design when their applications or websites have been already created, are being used by the public, and several metrics suggest that UX design could be improved.
It is at that point when businesses hire an UX consultor or specialist to identify what it is failing in their interface. Nevertheless, in most cases, such analysis tends to be subjective and based only on a study of user behavior.
To analyze user behavior, it is common to make use of tools like Google Analytics and Hotjar, but, even though they provide a large quantity of interesting data, the analysis that can be drawn based on that data will be always limited and insufficient.
Better and more effective methodologies are interviews with customers and focus groups, which will make us able to understand way better how certain features of our app or website impact on users, and also how they react to it.
Therefore, when it comes to UX design it is crucial to go beyond traditional analysis using metrics and investigate deeper about how users interact with interfaces, even in an emotional and general psychological aspect.
The obvious conclusion of the previous reasoning is to change how things are being done traditionally when it comes to UX design. It will always be far better to pay attention and make the proper investments in UX design since the first moment we start to design our app or website, to maximize the potential of them. Additionally, the cost of UX design during the developing stage will be always less than if we had to redefine the structure of our app/website.