Ever been to a website and felt an immediate sense of visceral revulsion (like this - arghhh!)? Or perhaps been quite impressed by the interface and then spent a frustrating eternity trying to find what you are looking for (help!!)? Inevitably this ends in a ‘what were they thinking!’ moment. And then you leave – never to return.
The answer to the question is they weren’t thinking much or not nearly enough! And certainly hadn’t adopted best practice in User Experience design (UX).
UX is the intricate process of producing a website. Planning, research, design and development are all steps in the UX process, often running concurrently and involving specially trained people. The cohesive interrelationship of each person and each task will lead to a successful website defined by a seamless and rewarding experience for visitors (‘users’).
We sometimes work on projects where an external designer without UX experience is tasked with ‘producing a skin’. Visions of prosthesis? Or perhaps wrapping a present, all tied up with a neat bow!
If this ever gets suggested to you, alarm bells should ring. Designing a visual identity or a brochure is a skill to be admired but the leap to website designer is wide. The wider the gap the more it’s likely to cost in getting expert help to support the development team or repair the damage. That’s why we never outsource to India or Uzbekistan.
The designer works within the process taking research and content and arranging it into a visual output.