User experience design (UX design) is based on the actual needs and behaviors of your users, which are then strategically aligned with your specific business goals. In other words, a UX designer’s goal is to increase the quality of your site’s user experience – you know, how a person feels about the interactions they have with your site or web app as they’re using it.
User interface design (UI design) then takes the UX research and design and begins to focus on how your site or app will look and operate. This includes everything from the site’s navigational flow to the colors and visual design. The UI designer’s goal is to make sure everything resonates with your users.
Not to Be Confused With:
Customer experience (CX), which includes every interaction a person has with an organization or brand – both digital and in-person.
CX should always be considered though, and your UX/UI design should be aligned with any established branding and messaging.
Great UX designers are great analysts. So, to start our design process, we make a commitment to seeing the world from your users’ perspectives. This means that we bust out our magnifying glasses and start seeking information on their needs, goals, motivations, and behaviors (such as how they are currently navigating your site, where they are getting hung up and, most importantly, how they feel about these interactions).
Precise Online Surveys
Exhaustive User Testing
Accurate Persona Creation
Separate but Equal
When conducting user research, we know the difference between listening and observing, and we know how important both strategies are in developing the perfect site structure.
It’s Time to Define
A persona represents a cluster of users who exhibit similar behaviors or patterns when visiting a site, using a product, or making a purchasing decision.
Now that we know how your users currently behave, we can design a customer journey that helps them find what they are looking for easily. This is generally referred to as the Information Architecture (IA) process; our team of UX sleuths will organize the hierarchy of your site and content, structuring and labeling it in such a way that allows users to reach their goal.
Once the IA process is complete, we can start with the wireframing process. Wireframes (visual representations of a website, software, or web app using a simple diagram) outline the different journeys we can take the user through. These templates will rarely contain color, images or styling, as they are meant to remove aesthetic distractions and allow us to focus on the site’s navigation and overall structure.
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” - Steve Jobs
If your site or web app doesn’t work well, then you end up with frustrated customers and empty baskets.
A prototype is a draft version of your site that brings you as close as possible to an accurate representation of your user interface, as seen across all sizes and platforms. It allows you to interact with your site’s design in real time and can be used to gather additional user feedback and reactions.
"Make it pretty"
At M+Co, we don’t do flashy user interfaces for the sake of sparkle. Designs focused on looks over functionality are only vanity projects if users can’t understand how to navigate the site.
Our job is to understand your users and create something beautiful and user-friendly.
Which sizes, fonts, and text arrangements help increase scanability and readability?
Are the interface elements evenly distributed?
Was the color scheme laid out consistently? Do the chosen colors clash in particular patterns?
Can users navigate and interact with the pages easily? Is it consistent throughout the site to ensure efficiency?
Were elements from popular sites employed wherever possible to make users feel more comfortable?
We let you guide this step and determine how deep of a dive you would like us to take. After all, research shows that 85% of usability problems can be found by testing just 5 users.
Choose the research you’d like completed and let our UX/UI detectives get to work! We’ll make sure everything is functioning exactly as intended and that your users can navigate intuitively and efficiently. And, if they can’t, we’ll change things up until they can.
Usually a moderated one-on-one usability session that allows you to take note of every action the user takes, rather than simply gathering data on their thoughts or opinions.
Remote User Testing
Usability sessions where the participants, facilitators, and observers are all separate, but online. Fair warning: while convenient, this format will dilute your interactions with the users and it can be harder to analyze the data.
A form consisting of detailed questions, preferably based on persona interviews and potential user problems, that is sent to a sample of your target audience.
A/B Version Testing
Also known as split testing, this assessment compares two live versions of your site or web app. However, version testing should only be conducted if you already have a product or service to improve, not if you’re still designing one.
A Horse of a Different Color
While UX and UI designers are two-sides of the same coin, developers are an entirely different coin altogether. Whereas our designers focus on the look, feel and functionality of your site or web app, our developers focus on its technical side and specialize in coding your perfect site from scratch.