Ux Blog

UX, not UI

ux-not-uiThe UX is how it works and not how It appear. The best strategy approach is join everyday your Team for an interactive strategy session. Use your prioritized personas and customer journey map to determine which problems to tackle first. A good approach is based on personas and customer to analyze what are the first problems to solve. The next step is to brainstorm in which to solve the problems of your customers, without getting too deep to contain the costs of the project. This session will therefore defines the UX and  not the user interface (UI).


The UX process

This image is represented as a simple diagram of how to proceed in the UX flow analysis to achieve its objectives. Inside this flow exists up also the analysis of a potential interface and its visual design.

Once you’ve identified some possible solutions, storyboards can offer a quick way to get feedback on which ideas resonate with your users. Artistic skill is not required; one of the most popular comics on the web, xkcd, relies on stick figures for communicating both simple and complex interactions. Save time with this storyboard template made in Balsamiq or Axure Mockups.


Test Early & Often

Validate these storyboards with your users, they’ll let you know when you’re on the right track.

Conceptual Design

If you’ve come this far, and everything went in the right direction it is time to move forward towards the Identified mental model, to explore the possible interface models. The strength is the realization of a user-friendly design and here only experience can help you. Try to find inspiration from the app. with a mental model similar to your product. Draw six to eight concepts in 5 minutes, then pitch and critique. At the end, narrow it down to 2-3 concepts for testing.


Prototype & Test

The best way to test is the prototyping in environments such as Axure or Balsamiq.
The conceptual designs should focus on flow, not on specific UI controls. You can use the design scenario from your winning storyboard as a script for testing out the concepts. I always recommend to try the user mockup installed on a real device. In this way you will discover the actual reactions of the user.


Site Map

Once you get a solid concept designed, you can start the site map. This is another dirty deliverable, “not because it is imprecise or lacks details, but because it can change”, Chris Farnum at IA Summit 2011.

This map will help prioritize UI design and development efforts since it highlights the screens for the most important flows.
Author: Walter Fantauzzi

Di Walter

Business Model Maker