User-centered design is the core of any successful interface. Implementing great design is no longer a choice. The alternative is a bad product. Crafting a great user experience is a mindset, not a skill set. It is not a step in the process, but rather it’s the entire life cycle of a project, even post-launch. At Avionos, we break great user experiences down into four parts: UX design, UI design, motion and animation, and engineering.
User experience (UX) design is the process of designing products that are easy to use, and provide a meaningful and relevant experience to users. UX design should start with a solid understanding of the customer and the goals of their site. At Avionos, we use a variety of methodologies to gain insight into what users are expecting from brands and where brands’ sites are falling short. This includes analytics, card sorting, customer interviews, surveys, journey mapping and heuristic evaluations. We then incorporate that user research to wireframe optimized workflows that align with the customer journey. Our last step before furthering the design is to validate taxonomy and flow. This means we organize and classify information throughout the site based on similarities of the concepts behind those features.
Good UX design focuses on how users interpret and search for content. This will save time, money, and user frustration by uncovering flaws before going live. Our UX designers get feedback early and often from clients and customers to ensure the final product will be successful.
User interface (UI) design is the visual layer that incorporates branding in a thoughtful and purposeful way. We use colors, typography, spacing, illustrations and more to set the tone, showcase professionalism, establish trust, and invoke emotion – all of which craft superior experiences that transform everyday touchpoints into meaningful and memorable ones. Without UI, UX would fall flat. Unsure about the difference between UI and UX? Read our blog on the differences between the two – and how they work together – here.
Motion and Animation
Motion design is a science. There is a fine line between improving an experience and making it worse when incorporating motion and animation. When used incorrectly, motion can waste time, distract users from content and key focus areas, cause confusion, and delay tasks. But when used correctly, motion is extremely powerful. Not only will it add delight and make users want to interact with a brand, but it can be used to get their attention on important content, can replace words and eliminate clutter, has communication properties and is especially useful for providing real-time feedback. However, the most important element of motion design is its ability to establish trust: motion allows interfaces to mimic real-world experiences.
Users don’t see code; what they respond to is design and performance. All of the intricate design work is wasted if it isn’t executed accurately or doesn’t perform efficiently when going live. Engineers who truly understand and value great design build better experiences. Our front-end engineers at Avionos focus on more than functionality. They understand the importance and thought that goes into every pixel designed, they have the skillset to bring designs to life using motion and animation, they require less input and testing from designers when translating designs to code, and they realize the quality of their code directly impacts performance. The end result is ultimately time saved and more importantly, a better experience for end-users.
These four elements are crucial when crafting any site. Skipping one pillar will cause the other three to collapse. Ready to improve your user experience? Contact us here.