UX vs. UI – How To Improve Both


While the days of brick-and-mortar shops might certainly be on the wane, the need of buyers for a pleasant shopping experience has never gone anywhere.

With eCommerce, that shopping experience has simply migrated to the realm of the digital: for now it is the look of your website, its feel and navigation that have become the floors and walls of your store. Or in other words, it’s all about your UX and UI now.

So what are those? And how can you improve it? To answer these questions, we’re gonna take a look at the primary elements of UX and UI, the things to consider when designing them and some of the apps that will help you with it. Let’s get started!

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User Experience (UX)

As the name suggests, user experience (UX) refers to the overall experience of your buyers with your product or service, such as website, online store or mobile app. The importance of a good UX design cannot be overstated:

  • It helps to increase the user satisfaction with your brand, making customers 5 times more likely to purchase from you.
  • It also lets you stand out. In a space where many competitors are offering similar products, a good UX design can become a decisive factor for customers to choose you over others.

Take Pannhorst Classics, for example.

Their UX design, which allows a user to explore a vehicle right on their website, is quite exemplary – it’s handy, saves consumers’ time on product examination and keeps them engaged with the interactive experience. The originality of the approach further helps the brand to stand out from the competiton. And this is just how effective UX design can be.

So what are the steps to improving it? Let’s take a look.

1. Study your user personas

User personas are imaginary characters used to represent all sorts of users who are likely to use your product or service.

To understand them, you need to do research on your audience. This will give you an overview of the main types of customers you have, their needs and the main points to focus on when developing your UX.

2. Map out their user journey

So once you have an overview of your user personas, consider and write down all the processes and steps they’ll have to take to complete a task on your website or app.

Also known as user journey, this record will give you a clear picture of the potential problems your customers will face when using your service as well as the features that might help them with it.

Source

3. Test it

With user personas and user journey at hand, you’ll get a better theoretical understanding of your audience. However, it is just as essential to put that knowledge to practical test.

So make sure to get the feedback from your potential users about your product. For example, find out their perception of such factors as:

  • the functionality of your UX elements (or how usable and useful they are)
  • their aesthetic appeal
  • the ease of navigation across your website, store or app
  • the credibility of its information

As a result, such user testing will help you troubleshoot the potential issues with your product or services before deploying it, thus saving you quite a bit of time, money and nerves.

User interface (UI)

While UX referred to the more general experience of your users with your product, UI stands for a more specific interaction of the users with the elements of your interface. This can include colors, typography, images and the overall look presented to the user.

It is essentially the first point of contact between the user and your brand and as such, it can become a large factor in determining whether the user will come back or not.

Designing UI

As with UX, it is essential to tailor your interface according to your user personas and their journeys. In other words, consider how they might interact with your product or service, what will be their expectations from it and then make sure to test your guesses.

Some other things to keep in mind while designing UI:

  • Keep the design simple and straightforward – the elements should be unambiguous so that the user knows exactly how to locate the needed features and content.
  • Make the interface appearance consistent across all sections of your product or service. This will make it easy for users to recognize patterns and elements across your product or service. 
  • Consider the colors you use and opt for those that will not distract users – the warmer ones are usually universally good.
  • Think of the positions of the features on the screen. Keep the important ones more prominent and use negative space for better contrast.
Example of contrast use by Yoga Rebel. With nothing else to lock onto, the visitor’s eye becomes naturally drawn to the CTA.

Apps for better UX/UI

If you want to save some time and effort on design,you can also consider using specialized UX/UI apps. Some of the better ones include:

  • Adobe XD. A great tool for crafting user flows, animations and website designs. The synchronization feature further allows to keep it all in one place or collaborate on the designs with several people at the same time. The plans include one free option and the paid ones start at $9.99/month.
  • Protopie. As the name suggests, Protopie lets you create interactive design prototypes. Based on the model Object + Trigger + Response, this kind of fast prototyping allows you to streamline your UI testing and get results quite fast. Price starts at $13.
  • Figma. Another great tool for UX/UI design, Figma gives you the opportunity to easily insert elements on your screen, thus helping you create and test your design ideas with an immediate feedback. Price: free starter plan and the paid ones starts from $12/month.

Wrapping up

As we’ve seen, UX and UI can be pretty vital for your business. From making the first impression on customers to sustaining their attention, these two parts of their experience with you define your performance and success as a brand.

Hopefully, though, with this guide you’ll be equipped better to improve your designs and achieve greater efficiency with your customer interactions.

Meanwhile, we wish you all the best in your UX/UI strategy. Thank you for reading!

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