Is the UX design process completely arbitrary or does it have a consistent structure? For starters, it should be emphasized that the creation process is generally non-linear. Nevertheless, you can identify certain stages that are always part of it. Read on to find out more.
The UX design process in 5 easy and simple steps – table of contents:
Define the user
Before you start thinking about any solution, you need to know what problems it is supposed to solve. However, as the UX design process is human-centered, you can’t make good creations without getting to know users first. This involves consulting with experts, immersing yourself with the problem, observing real people and getting to know their point of view, interviewing end users, and reviewing existing research. At this stage, don’t worry too much about putting data in context. Just concentrate on gathering information and constructing a clear picture of the problem.
At this point, you already have a lot (perhaps even too much) of data. It’s time to make assumptions based on gathered information. Synthesize it into simple statements that represent the main problem. Make sure they describe the users’ needs, not the needs of the company creating the product. Also, creating user personas can be especially helpful at this stage.
Let the creative process begin! Finally, it’s time to get down to generating ideas. Remember to view this stage as a natural continuation of data collection and analysis. Ideas must come from the previous stages. One of the most popular techniques used at this stage is brainstorming. It is important not to exclude any idea at this point, as this may block the author. Sometimes a good solution comes after coming up with a few bad ones.
Gathering several ideas at the beginning helps you look at them critically and choose only the best ones. Make sure you create a safe environment where designers can think out loud, even if their concepts are provocative.
Another example of a popular technique, besides brainstorming, is an exercise called “worst possible idea.” It may seem surprising, but thinking about what won’t work often helps bring a fresh perspective to a problem. Be confident in your creative process. Remember that ideas are never bad. They just may not be selected for implementation.
Create a prototype
It’s time to experiment and see if the ideas are as good as they seem to be. Prototyping means producing an inexpensive version of a product (or even just a few key features of it). It helps to see if the design process is going in the right direction.
Prototypes should be tested by both the design team and a representative group of end users. This approach will help you get accurate feedback.
Features of the prototype can be accepted or rejected. They can be improved and changed. It is important to remain flexible here and not to follow one path blindly.
Test your product
As we underlined at the beginning of this article, the design process isn’t linear. You might think that after testing a prototype, all you need to do is fix the bugs. This is rarely the case. It turns out that you often have to go back to the very beginning of the process, collect more data and do additional research. Since the foundation of design thinking is iteration, there is a lot of back-and-forth.
UX design process – summary
When it comes to the UX design process, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. It includes iterating and even altering your initial assumptions along the way. It actually never ends. Your products get new functions, the market and trends change, and so do users’ preferences.
That’s all you need to know about UX design processes. Follow our blog category “The ultimate UX Guide” so you don’t miss any of our next articles.
The ultimate UX Guide:
- What is UX – and what it is NOT
- UX and UI – are they comparable?
- 7 factors of (outstanding) User Experience
- Do you know what UX Design means?
- Are you designing user experiences? Take care of these things!
- 10 usability heuristics for UX design you need to know
- The UX design process in 5 easy and simple steps
- User-centered design and its main principles
- Stages of User-Centered Design process
- What is Customer Experience?
- User Experience vs Customer Experience. A simple explanation of their relationship
- What is a Brand Experience?
- What is Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)?
- Why UX is important?
- Usability vs functionality in UX
- Examples of good UX design