UX (or User experience) is difficult to describe by one distinct definition. Like branding, User Experience can essentially take on many forms suffice to say that when it comes to the nitty gritty, User Experience design is ascertaining how a user will react and interact with your website or product. The term UX incorporates many facets including visual design, interaction design, and usability. There have been innumerable studies on the topic in the quest for producing the most appropriate User Experience combinations and again, just like branding, there is no “one way” to accomplish this.
So why is UX important?
And, as a designer, haven’t I just been doing this all along? I was asking myself the same question when I discovered the term a while ago. Unfortunately User Experience isn’t just about designing an aesthetically pleasing outcome. It’s about function. It’s about interaction. It’s about way-finding. If your customer/user is unable to navigate their way through your website, it then creates an uncomfortable experience and possibly the loss of sale. UX is integral for your company’s overall image and in terms of ecommerce even more dramatically so.
“To create truly memorable and satisfying experiences, a User Experience designer needs to understand how to create a logical and viable structure for the experience and needs to understand the elements that are important to creating an emotional connection with the product’s users.” – A project Guide to UX Design, Russ Unger and Carolyn Chandler
We at Neocreative do not even consider designing a website without the necessary User Experience planning beforehand. Thumbnails, wire frames, story boards, user testing are all paramount to our design process. This initial planning allows us to create a product to best suit a clients’ needs and subsequently their users’. Branding and UX work hand-in-hand in terms of overall identity.