"Design is not just what it looks like and how it feels. Design is how it works.” - Steve Jobs
Almost any designer can make you a cool design with bright colours, but it takes truly skilled designers to create something that brings an exceptional user experience.
To start off, let’s briefly explain what "User Experience" actually is, in case you are unfamiliar with the term.
User experience design covers a range of things like the user interface design, usability of the application, accessibility of information, information architecture, human-computer interactions, and much more.
Research has proven that, on average, every $1 you invest in improving user experience (UX) brings up to $100 in returns.
In this article, we will show you which UX factors you should pay special attention to, to generate real added value for your clients as a designer.
As a client, look at your company like a book and your website being the cover. As it is one of the first touchpoints of your (potential) clients, a website should be presentable and above all else, useful, to create a user experience that truly pays off.
No matter which of these roles you find yourself in, let's now look at which factors are the most decisive:
The first and foremost question to ask before designing a website is, “Who will visit the site?”. This will have a significant impact on the entire roadmap of your project because the answer to this question provides direction to the design.
For example, if you are designing a website for a blog, your design should aim to engage the user on the website for as long as possible, through intelligent layout and structure, displaying similar articles, or targeted call-to-actions within the articles.
For a B2B website, the focus is instead on presenting the USPs for the appropriate target group and a clear presentation of the product's features. So, the design approach is completely different compared to the first example, because the users also differ.
Ease of use
88% of online shoppers say that they wouldn’t return to a website after having a bad user experience.
This reflects the importance of designing a website that is easy to navigate and use for the customer. A website is scanned, not read. As a result, the first experience of a website makes a lasting impression on the user's mind. Ease of use of the website is one of the most important UX factors to consider when designing a website.
To ease the user experience of your website, we suggest KISSing it. Keeping It Simple but Significant—KISS. For example, bullet points are a great way to present text that you want the user to pay attention to. According to research, 70% of users look at lists using bullet points compared to 55% of users reading a list without bullet points. Based on these numbers, you should always use a bullet list if needed. It does not have to be a traditional bullet list. There are design methods that combine the intention of a bullet list together with beautiful design, but in any case, it improves the reading quality decisive.
Think from the perspective of the user and visualize their journey. Questions such as, “What information is key to them?”, “Which pages do they most likely visit?", “What questions might they have?”, “Is the website easy to understand?” have to be considered to create an easy-to-use website.
When we work on a client’s website, we run a thorough user experience check-up by involving people from different (design/user) backgrounds. This provides us with a bird’s eye view of the ease-of-use of the website. Having all this information, we start designing the navigation structure, creating basic content layouts, and including design elements.
Being mobile-friendly, or in some cases, mobile-first is the new standard. Around 50% of total website traffic is from mobile devices. If you do not have a responsive website that works seamlessly across a variety of devices, then you are lagging behind. It is a need of time to ensure that websites are accessible and functional on all devices.
Due to this, responsiveness is also one of the most important UX factors to consider when designing a website - the overall layout, navigation, and design elements. It is important that visitors share a similar experience of the website irrespective of the device being used. So, double-check the responsiveness of all the elements of your website including navigation, layout, call-to-actions, functionality, and the user journey.
Going forward, responsiveness will not be an option. It will be a fundamental part of web design. This is why it is on our list of the most important UX factors for web design.
Consistency is a crucial element among important UX factors. This basic principle of design needs to resonate with the overall composition of the web design to create a cohesive image in the mind of the user. Consistency should be reflected across all the design elements of your website to achieve this.
Last but definitely not least, visual appeal is yet another vital UX factor to consider. Many visitors will have an impression of your website based on the overall visual attractiveness. If it looks good to the eye, it is more likely to be perceived as useful and easy to navigate. To achieve these results, focus on creating excellent designs that will help your website to stand out from the competition.
While getting creative, be mindful to not drift away from the brand guidelines. The overall colour combinations of the website, design elements, backgrounds, call-to-action buttons should all be aligned with the brand colours. You can also consider using genre-specific colours. For example, using dark blue and white for designing a website for an insurance company, or using green as the main colour when designing an online organic store’s website. Colour combination should complement the brand guidelines and the genre of the website.
Plus, using modern and up-to-date illustrations, graphic elements, shapes, and fonts will elevate the design and significantly increase visual appeal.
At the end of the day, a website should always be useful for the users. If it has stunning designs but does not serve the required purpose, then it is almost entirely useless. You become valuable by adding value, so the website should add value to the users through both the design, especially UX design and the content, creating a seamless user experience.
We hope we could be of some help to you in the design process of your project. Fintory supports some of the world's largest companies and also innovative startups in finding an excellent (UX) Design.
If you have any further questions or specific plans, our designers and developers will be happy to help you. Please feel free to contact us at any time.