The Business Case For UX

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The benefits of UX engineering go beyond improving the interface and the user experience: it benefits end users, developers and their companies.

Satisfied customers are returning customers which lead to increased sales, longer use and more consumption.

Unhappy customers lead to loss in sales due to poor design or the inability to find what they are looking for.

UX engineering influences brand perception.

A bad user experience damages the company brand.

Users who have a bad experience with a brand typically tell others resulting in a reduction in use, customer retention and a bad reputation within the industry.

An investment in UX engineering creates positive experiences surrounding a brand.

UX engineering reduces development and saves time.

Making design changes cost 10x as much during the development phase and 100x as much after release.

80% of all software lifecycle costs occur in the maintenance phase.

Usable systems are more intuitive, require less training and facilitate productive work.

Although efficiency is not always the main issue in the usage of the system it is very important.

If a system is designed to support how users prefer to work and is guided by UX principles it is generally more productive and efficient.

Productivity improvements have the largest impact on work supporting systems.

Business Benefits

Increases Sales & Consumption
Improves Brand Perception
Reduces Development Costs
Reduces Mantenance Costs
Reduces Training Costs
Improves Productivity

UX engineering is THE most powerful activity that brands can carry out to answer a range of questions which can be crucial to how their website or application performs.

Questions around user perceptions, user behaviour, business processes, brand perception and customer research can be made through UX engineering.

Introduction to UX

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UX engineering is THE most important aspect of any application or website development.

The main purpose is to build for the user!

The emergence of smartphones and tablets has really opened up the web to such an extent that we cannot predict what kind of device the user will be using.

What we can be very sure of is that a good user experience will benefit everyone.

10 Elements of UX

Familiarity
Responsiveness & Feedback
Performance
Intuitiveness & Efficiency
Helpfulness
Relevant, Valuable Content
Internal Consistency
External Consistency
Appropriateness To Context
Trustworthiness

A typical user will want all of these things when using an application so it is very important that we design with the user in mind.

UI Design

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UI design is the look and feel. It is the interaction layer between the user and the application, and in many cases, it concerns the interaction of a variety of users.

Working on the user interface early on in the product development life cycle is vital because as far as the customer is concerned, the interface is the product.

The user sees and interacts with the user interface, not the underlying back-end architecture of your application.

UI Considerations

Clarity
Concision
Familiarity
Responsiveness
Consistency
Aesthetics
Efficiency
Forgiveness

Start by designing the interface first and then code the back-end that powers it, rather than building the back-end first and placing a “wrapper” over the top.

User Centered Design

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User Requirements are the functions that the application should be able to perform from the perspective of the user. User Centered Design is the discipline of collecting and analysing these User Requirements.

Early Focus on Users and Tasks, A/B Testing to Refine the Application and Iterate, Iterate, Iterate.

Understand the Product Domain, Profiles / Personas and Scenarios.

It is important to recruit participants that are similar to the profiles discovered from earlier field studies. This way you will be testing the correct type of user.

A prioritised list of user requirements to be actioned and discussed.

Testing Methods

Interviews
Surveys
Card Sorting
Group Task Analysis
Wants and Needs
Focus Groups
Field Studies

These methods should be employed at every stage of the application lifecycle.

Summary

Key principals for designing effective user experiences in the digital channel...

Accomplishing a goal should be obvious to the user, without confusion or explanation.

Micro-tasks should be validated with feedback. Failure to provide appropriate feedback pulls focus away from the goal and forces an intense focus on micro-tasks.

Performance issues indicate a poorly engineered product or technical malfunction.

The degree to which the process of accomplishing a goal is obvious.

A solution may solve a business problem without considering user needs but in the end will have a negative effect on the business.

Well timed, relevant content can increase user satisfaction and drive sales. (e.g. "Things you might also consider" when buying a product is a good example of this).

The website, application or interface should handle similar tasks in similar ways. Consistent visual design gives the impression of a unified, well-organised, professional product.

The visual appearance of a product should indicate its purpose and audience. This is also the case with branding standards.

The use of language or imagery should be appropriate to the context.

Issues that break engagement also injure the trustworthiness of a product.

Key Principles

The Elements Of Engaging UX
Responsiveness & Feedback
Performance
Intuitiveness & Efficiency
Helpfulness
Relevant, Valuable Content
Internal Consistency/td>
External Consistency
Appropriateness To Context
Trustworthiness