Improve UX Design Planning & Efficiency 🎨

By Ricardo Ohlsson  |  5 Jan 2024

A great user experience (UX) is important for making any product or service a hit, whether it’s a website, mobile app, software, or even a physical thing. It’s all about how users see and use the product. It can seriously affect how many users like it and stick around. Here are some pointers that Tech Genius believes can make a difference to your user experience in the long run.

1. Do The Research 🖥️

It’s important to note that initial research can take up to 30% of your time and there’s a good reason for that! UX research involves understanding an industry and its audience. Although your focus is on a web app, your audience includes people from different regions, generations, and backgrounds. Another way to get a clearer understanding of your UX is by researching and experimenting with existing apps, there are already so many out there!

By listing your findings, you could just collect the components you want and start designing from there. Regarding your end goal, you’ll need to find a balance between the needs of your client and your client’s clients, alongside maintaining the functionality and features that their app must have. With the right level of research, the end goal will be clearer and easier to maintain.

2. Experiment With User Stories 🧪

It’s no use creating an app for children when it takes an adult to understand it which is why a good user story is necessary. User stories usually apply within an Agile software development environment but when it comes to UX, this has made a major difference to understanding our user needs.  A user story is an informal way of expressing a software requirement from the perspective of an end user or customer.

A user story would usually follow the following format: As a [type of user], I want to [goal to achieve], in order to [the reason]. User stories will help you understand the actions a user must take to achieve a specific goal when using the app. Good user stories include acceptance criteria, which allow a QA team to ensure the app is working correctly with testable scenarios.

From a UX perspective, acceptance criteria are focal points for providing user feedback. When users perform an action, getting feedback, like a small confirmation popup or “changes saved!”, is very important.

3. Use It Before You Improve It! 📊

You may not have the opportunity to actually test the application before it’s release, or your QA team has already done it with no negative feedback. Here’s the thing, you’re the UX designer. Your focus should be on improving the user experience and the best way to do that is to use it!

Whether you’re a newbie or a UX expert, there’s always room for improvement, but you’ll end up wasting time if you keep circling on the same design aspect because you don’t know how to improve it?

We always suggest sending in your work and waiting for feedback before making further changes, especially when you start designing in circles. External input from your team can help but it’s the users’ input that actually makes a difference. Play around with the application, make notes, and essentially design without prioritizing perfection.

4. Simplify Your Mockups 📱

Depending on the size of your next project, the client’s budget, or your allocated due date, you’ve got to make it work. What better way to do that than to provide a simpler mockup of your design before going into full designer mode?

Whether it’s a technical sketch or just wireframes, all that matters is relaying your plans correctly so that your team and client both understand what you’re designing and its purpose. Why create a Figma mockup when you can relay the purpose of a dropdown before implementing it?

Users perform actions throughout the app, and these actions form a process tree, which can also be another way of relaying information before implementation. We’ve found many ways to improve UX just by understanding the full process tree and then relaying it to my client. In turn, we don’t always need mockups to know the next step in the design process.

5. Compile A Story 📖

As a UX designer, you must ask yourself how to maintain interest in actually using the app, which doesn’t involve UI design, fancy colors, or modern fonts. Creating a story means streamlining your app to match itself. Yes, itself! As we design an app, we grow and we learn, finding better ways of doing things. This can result in different parts of the app.

When you started, you included a lot of filters on a page’s search feature, in a specific order. Closer to the end, you didn’t include as many filters and they’ve now been organized differently. This can cause difficulty navigating the app and eventually frustrate your users. Similar to a story, don’t stray too far from the end goal, keep your design tactics for this project and other projects separate as they require different generations of ideas.


The Conclusion 🏁

These may not be all the methods for improving your UX design performance but these minor aspects can make a big difference to your and your clients’ experience, making you more efficient and potentially boosting your motivation.

  1. Research Matters: Spend time understanding your audience and industry. Study existing apps for insights.
  2. User Stories: Use user stories to express requirements from a user’s perspective.
  3. Use It, Improve It: Actively use the app for improvement. Seek feedback from users and your team.
  4. Simplify Mockups: Use simpler mockups to convey design plans effectively.
  5. Maintain Consistency: Keep the app’s design consistent and avoid drastic changes.

Being a designer in any industry can be difficult due to the increase in the number of styles, user preferences, and updated techniques. At the end of the day, maintaining your cool and being prepared always comes in handy!