The Unsung Heroes of App Design: UX and UI
Quality UX and UI design are both crucial elements of an app or digital product. However, if you don’t work in the app development industry with a creative digital agency, it makes sense that you may not exactly know what these terms mean. Sometimes it can feel like developers are speaking their own special language, one the rest of us will never understand.
The concepts are actually simpler than you may think. UX refers to “user experience,” while UI refers to “user interface.” Together, they play an essential role in voice app development and the eventual success of any digital product.
UX Design: Giving Customers a Seamless Experience
Customers expect apps to be as efficient and easy-to-use as possible. Ever notice how so many digital products come with essentially no “user manual”? While they may include some help tips, for the most part, navigating an app is an intuitive, simple process.
Of course, that’s the case when the UX design team did their job right. Many people point out that customers generally don’t even notice UX design unless it’s poor. When opening an app, the average person simply anticipates being able to use it without having to look up how to access a specific feature or perform a specific function. They only become conscious of their experience when using an app is difficult.
Poor UX doesn’t merely result in a confusing product. Sometimes, a customer may be able to easily identify what steps they must follow to take advantage of a feature; however, they may find they have to take more steps than are truly necessary. In our fast-paced world, everyone wants digital products to operate with maximum efficiency. No one wants to waste more time than they have to.
That means that UX designers must approach app development from a strategic, technical perspective. They start by deciding what type of experience they want a user to have, determining whether that experience will add value to a customer’s life, and identifying what steps they must take in order to facilitate that experience.
This involves developing multiple iterations of a product and testing it throughout the development process to ensure every element works exactly as intended. UX design teams must understand what technology and methods they can use to provide an ideal experience for the customer.
UI Design: Giving Customers a Pleasant Experience
UI design has much more in common with art than UX design. UI designers are responsible for developing the overall aesthetics of a digital product.
This involves everything from choosing a color scheme and selecting typography for text, to designing icons or buttons customers will click on to make use of the app’s features.
Visual details are important, but many apps also feature audio and related aesthetic features. A UI design team is also responsible for developing and selecting music, alert sounds, and the like.
Although the two disciplines require different approaches, UI design can be just as complicated as UX design. A product’s interface must be pleasing to users. It also must effectively represent the product’s branding.
UI design can essentially be thought of as a form of graphic design, but it’s very dynamic work. It’s one thing to design the perfect logo or ad for a product. It’s another thing altogether to maintain consistent quality when a digital product may feature a wide range of visual and audio elements.
Either way, a digital product can’t succeed without strong UX and UI. If the UX is poor, no customer will care that the app looks nice; they’ll merely pay attention to the fact that they can’t use it easily.
If the UI is poor, the experience of using the app will be unpleasant. In fact, when a product serves an important function, like assisting in medical treatment, the consequences of poor UX or UI can be dire. That’s why it’s important to work with design teams who understand the importance of both elements. Together, they can create products that succeed.