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UX design for business: Key concepts and importance

Due to its importance in the users’ journey, UX design is essential for modern organizations. It is time for businesses to give due attention to this field.

9 min read

The success of any product or service is dependent on the extent to which its design is able to meet the needs of the users. When an individual interacts with a design, he/she has a certain predefined goal in mind, some task that he/she wants to accomplish. If the product is designed in a way that helps the user in achieving the goal, the overall experience will, indeed, be rated highly. If, on the other hand, the user is not satisfied with the end result, or gets frustrated during the interaction, the design cannot be regarded as a successful one. Since no business can survive without a customer base, it is essential to give due attention to the user experience (UX).

Looking at it from a business perspective, the value of UX is increasing each passing day. A good design not only helps in meeting the needs of the target audience but also shows that the organization cares for its users. This leads to greater trust, a wider customer base, a competitive advantage, and more revenue. All modern companies have at least a few people working on the improvement of user experience. Whether it is a fashion startup or a tech giant, design professionals are highly valuable to the business. In cases where organizations do not have a formal design department, they often reach out to a user experience design agency, which is an equally effective approach. This article introduces the concept of UX design, its value, and how it can be beneficial to modern businesses. Read along to find what is the purpose of UX design, why does user experience matter, and what are the benefits of UX design.

UX design and why it matters

User experience (UX) design is a methodical approach used by designers to provide a better, useful, and usable experience to the end-users. UX design covers all aspects of a user’s interaction with an organization, its products, or services. The experience starts even before a user physically interacts with a design and lasts way longer than the actual interaction.

Essentials of UX design

The design practice relies on certain core values, commonly referred to as the UX design principles. Some of the most important principles are as follows.

  • Empathy: Empathy is an essential trait for designers. UI/UX professionals not only understand the needs of the users but also empathize with them to know what the major pain points are and how to resolve them.
  • Focus on the audience: A design should always prioritize the users. UX designers always adopt a user-centered approach, where their needs and expectations are never neglected.
  • Usefulness and usability: All designs have some limiting factors. Engineers, developers, and design professionals can only do so much to meet all the users’ needs and also keep things understandable. It is, therefore, important to ensure that the designs are useful and usable, so the audience can actually benefit from them.
  • Accessibility: UI/UX designers, along with being empathetic, are also mindful of the special needs of their audience. The goal here is to make the design process inclusive and the end products accessible to everyone irrespective of their physical abilities.

Why does UX design matter?

The importance of UX design can never be overstated. The design of any product or service dictates the relationship between a user and a business. Users want to save time and effort but are not willing to keep a product that is not perfect for them. This focus on efficiency and usefulness puts an added pressure on business, particularly when there are a dozen other alternatives that the target audience can switch to.

A good design holds the promise of making users’ lives easier. Additionally, such designs can save a lot of time and money for businesses. If, on the one hand, the businesses gain a competitive advantage, then, on the other hand, they are also saved from a host of complaints from their customers.

When it comes to the digital environment, the value of design gets more pronounced. Most of the content that we consume these days comes from our interaction with screens. The sheer amount of content, products, services, applications, and websites out there are overwhelming, to say the least. Modern businesses, therefore, need to understand the importance of user experience in web design, application development, and online information management.

Importance of UX design for business

There has always been a gap between the expectations of users and the products developed by organizations. At times the needs of users are unrealistic but at other times, businesses do not really understand what the users want and how those needs can be met. The latter can, and must, be controlled if a business has to function successfully in today’s world.

If a business focuses on UI/UX design, it is bound to deliver quality products to the users. This is one of the best ways to retain existing customers, attract potential audiences, and ensure a better return on investment. Some of the values of UX for businesses are as follows.

  • Comfort for existing users: The experience of existing users is of prime importance for any organization. It not only adds to customer satisfaction but also ensures that the users stay loyal to the company.
  • Better reviews and more referrals: A satisfied customer base means better reviews and a chance to get more business. The social network in the digital world ensures that the good (or bad) performance of any business doesn’t go unnoticed.
  • Increased conversion rates: It is one thing to attract new users and an entirely different thing to convert them into customers. This is where a good UX can be of immense value. If the users benefit from trying a small product or service, they’re likely to buy your product and stick to it for the years to come.
  • Reduced debugging cost: A product or service created with good design practices makes the tasks of developers easy as well. In case of an issue, for instance, it is easier to identify the problem, get feedback from the users, and resolve the issue in a little time. This not only saves cost but also brings relief to the developers.
  • Better success ratio: The rigorous practice of user experience also ensures that a product is thoroughly tested before it actually hits the market. This is of great importance for all businesses as a well-tested product is more likely to succeed in the real world.

It will not be wrong to say that, given the competitive nature of the market, it is impossible for businesses to survive, let alone thrive, in today’s market. The absence of good design practices can be devastating for any organization. The users today have a number of options to switch to and not a lot of time to wait for reactive businesses. It is important to make the users a part of the entire design process and move forward in a proactive manner. Similarly, if the users do not get something unique from a product, there will no longer be a reason for them to stick to it. UX design focuses on the users and, being dynamic in nature, ensures that their new needs are met accordingly.

If you’re still wondering why is UI/UX important for business, all you need to do is look at the leading organizations and UX design agencies to see designs in action.

What is most important to a UX designer

UI/UX designers are making the lives of individuals and businesses easier day in and day out. With their creative ideas and holistic approach to user experience, designers ensure that the gap between the needs of the audience and the services provided to them is minimized. The audience, which is most important to a UX designer, always takes the front row seat.

The essential principles of UX design, listed at the beginning, guide designers in making careful decisions before and during the development of a design. UI/UX designers always adopt a user-centered approach, thus prioritizing the needs of the target audience. This is where design thinking comes into play. In adopting a design thinking approach, designers ensure that the users are made an active part of the design process, from its ideation up until its completion. This helps in bringing quality feedback from real users, facing real problems, in the real world. The designers then use this information to make their products and services useful and usable.

Professional designers are always looking for improvements in their existing designs, trying to identify the shortcomings, and resolving the issues. Creativity, openness to feedback, and the ability to do more enables UI/UX designers to come up with innovative solutions. The end goal is to add value to the lives of users, provide them with accurate and understandable information, that too in an interactive and easy way. Peter Morville’s Honeycomb summarizes the key attributes of a good design.

UI/UX design is a multidisciplinary field where knowledge from a number of disciplines is brought together. A designer, therefore, brings a diverse set of skills to the table including, but not limited to, project management, research and analysis, and social media management. Designers not only help in making quality interactive products but also help other teams by collaborating with them.

The value of designers is only going to increase in the years to come. It makes even more sense for businesses working in the digital world, primarily because of the importance of user experience in web design. Modern organizations need a dedicated design team to keep a constant check on their new products and services. Such a team should not only be responsible for creating new designs but also focus on improving the existing ones, to ensure that the products meet the changing needs of the audience. Investment effort and money in UX design are worth everything for an organization that needs to keep ahead of the competition.

Conclusion

The value of UX design is increasing each day in the business world. Irrespective of the type and scope of an organization, it is time that due attention is given to the field of design. Successful startups and established companies all over the world implement best design practices and value their UI/UX professionals. It is one of the most important factors in the success, or failure, of a business.

UX designers provide a strong connection between the organization's goals and the users’ expectations. They are not only capable of understanding the needs of the audience but are also skillful enough to realize these needs, adding value to the organization. All modern businesses need to focus on UI/UX design, just like any other technical department, or even a little more than that.