User Experience (UX)
How the end user experiences your product, whether it’s a brand new iPhone app or a stunning new shirt design, will ultimately influence how well your company does. With a huge influx of new businesses and ideas, the best ones often rise to the top and leave less desirable products hanging in the dust.
User experience is a multi-faceted field, and there are many aspects that go into how positively a user might experience your product. Peter Morville of Semantic Studios explains UX in an incredibly useful way:
The seven areas represented in the hexagons above make up what results in amazing (or horrible) end user experience for your product.
Useful. Is your product solving some pain point of the user? How does the product help them?
Usable. How easy to use is your product? At the end of the day, if your product solves all of the problems your client has but takes a team of 1200 engineers to operate and understand, it won’t be a great experience for them.
Desirable. How well is your product branded? How appealing is the interface? Does it have a human and emotional appeal to it?
Findable. This is closely related to usable. How easy is it to navigate the product? Is finding what the end user wants incredibly simple and intuitive?
Accessible. The population varies wildly from country to country and even street-to-street—is your product easy to access for your target market? What about beyond that? You don’t want your product hiding in the wrong corner of the world—someone shouldn’t have to look hard to find you.
Credible. Can your product (and by extension, your entire company) be trusted? Is your product as good as it claims to be? Building credibility is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and your business.
Valuable. Finally, the bottom line: is your product worth it? For the time, money, and energy that it takes someone to use your product—is it worth it?
Whether you’re designing software or a new fashion statement, if you can hit every spot on this honeycomb, your product will have a fantastic user experience.