What is UX Design? It's more important than you think! In fact, designing a product or service as it relates to the User Experience (UX) is crucial when it comes to developing products and services. But how do you do that? We've put together this list of 10 Essential Takeaways from Jon Gilman's Startup Study Hall entitled, How User Experience Generates Growth, Success, and Scalability. This guide will walk you through implementing UX Best Practices for connecting with your customer in ways that consistently leads to growth, success, and scalability.
1 - Understand Your Users: The critical first step of effective UX design is to put yourself in the place of the user and see where your pain points are. Then dig deeper - conduct thorough research, gather user feedback, and create user personas to gain insights into the specific goals, needs, and preferences of your customer. It is essential to first understand your target audience in order to create a product that appeals to them directly.
2 - Focus on the User: Your customer is the center of every decision, and all users appreciate simplicity and ease of use. For a wholly positive experience, eliminating any friction throughout the customer journey improves satisfaction, reduces frustration, and establishes a more positive relationship.
3 - Keep It Simple: Again, usability is essential for a great user experience. Focus on creating a product that is simple, intuitive, and clear in combination with ongoing usability testing will identify problem areas, usability issues, and places for potential improvement.
4 - Design for Accessibility: Accessibility is the foundation upon which excellent UX is designed. From considering device types and connection speed to incorporating innovations for those with visual or physical impairments, following accessibility guidelines and including diverse users in usability testing will make your product accessible to a broader audience.
5 - Consistency, Consistency, Consistency: Gaining your user’s trust and loyalty is the ultimate goal, and consistency is a significant part of doing that. Establishing a cohesive design across your product that includes visual elements, communication styles, and other guidelines will go a long way toward that goal.
6 - Provide & Receive Feedback: Hearing from the customer from usability testing or comparing the results of A/B testing will provide valuable feedback from active users of your product. This can also include surveys, follow-up emails, or asking for feedback on social media, which provides both negative and positive feedback - all of which is useful.
7 - Appeal to the Visual: One of the simplest ways to communicate with your user is to implement visual hierarchy. Use specific colors, fonts, and placement to make it easy for your customer to identify the key information and interact with your product.
8 - Communication is Key: From a button color change to a thank you message at the completion of an action, giving your customer positive responses help guide your user through a more engaging and enjoyable experience.
9 - Collaboration: Excellent User Experience design requires that departments work together and communicate regularly. A collaborative approach helps ensure the end product meets all of the goals and requirements, which leads to a better user experience.
10 - Innovate & Improve: UX Design is a cyclical process that is never truly "done." The ongoing gathering of user feedback, monitoring of traffic, and analysis of customer behavior can identify trends and provide reasoning for future changes.
Want to learn more about UX Design and Design Thinking? Jon recommends the books "Don't Make Me Think, Revisited" by Steve Krug and "The Design of Everyday Things" by Don Norman.
Startup Study Halls provide the structure, consistency, and accountability to help you focus on moving your idea forward. Executive Mentors focus on one topic specific to starting up and/or scaling a business. Mentors provide case studies and actionable next steps so that what you learn in Startup Study Hall can be applied immediately to your business.
Jon Gilman is an Executive Mentor for Startup Study Hall and led this session on User Experience Design. Jon is currently a Director at Microsoft and Founder of Clear Software. Jon has made a career of streamlining and automating broken business processes at Fortune 500 companies. In 2012, Jon founded Clear Software and created its Intelligent Process Automation (IPA) platform to enable organizations to streamline core business processes across software such as SAP, Oracle EBS, and Salesforce. Microsoft acquired Clear Software in October 2021.