When you open up a web page to a new site it’s an intuitive experience. Every component on the page serves a purpose. The main page provides an overview of the most vital product information. The navigation bar outlines the most important topics. Drop-down menus and image rotators serve as interactive features to encourage further exploration of the site.
A pleasant and effortless user experience isn’t a coincidence. It’s created through (UX) design, a process that allows designers to build great websites, apps, and products that cater to those who use it.
UX design, often confused with user interface (UI) design, involves more than clever graphic design techniques or cunning color combinations. Find out what UX design is and how you can get started in pursuing it as a career.
What is UX Design?
UX design is an area of technology that combines human-computer interaction (HCI) with user or product service. John Amir-Abbassi, a user experience researcher at Facebook, describes UX design as a multi-faceted process that requires depth and perspective.
“User Experience Design is an approach to design that takes into account all the aspects of a product or service with the user. That includes not only the beauty and function: (usability and accessibility) of a product or a flow, but also things like delight, and emotion—things that are harder to engineer and achieve,” Amir-Abbassi told User Testing.
UX design involves a multidisciplinary understanding of branding, business management, and technology. UX professionals are expected to become some of the most in-demand tech jobs for 2021, according to LinkedIn’s 2021 Jobs on the Rise Report. Due to interest and demand, companies are seeking to hire designers with specialization in UX design to focus solely on the user experience.
UX Designer Role & Responsibilities
Now that you know what UX design is, you know the purpose behind a UX designer’s actions. However, that’s just one component of a UX designer’s role in a company. UX designers need to know how to expertly execute a website experience by having the following skills and qualities.
Ease of use occurs when a website or app is organized and visually pleasing. With too much clutter, the user may be overwhelmed. With too little information, the user will lose interest and move on to something else. A good UX designer knows how to create a product that a user wants to look at while also including the right breadth of information.
Interactive design elements are not only ideal in modern digital design but basic expectations when a person enters a site. Interactive design elements indicate a sense of professionalism and quality. Users who see embedded videos, dropdown menus, and other interactive content can get a sense of confidence that what’s being presented is real, even if they’re only seeing it virtually rather than in real life.
UX designers must know their audience, and research is a cornerstone to creating a great product. UX designers are responsible for monitoring target groups and conducting studies on a product. They must also know how to administer surveys for quality feedback that can improve the performance of a product.
Emotional Intelligence and Perspective
UX designers should have the high emotional intelligence to deliver and exceed user expectations. They constantly ask themselves, “How can I make a user’s experience better?” UX designers should also make sure that they consider multiple perspectives outside of their own. For instance, a website should be user-friendly for everyone. What features are needed for a person with disabilities so they can have a similar experience to someone who doesn’t?
How can I become a UX Designer?
Most who pursue a career in UX design have completed a university degree. According to a Nielsen Norman Group survey, some of the most common majors among UX professionals include design, psychology, and communication. There are also UX designers who did not complete a degree. Instead, they learned hard skills by themselves or through a program.
According to an article on Forbes, UX design is expected to see some changes in the next few years. UX designers will need to incorporate advancements in artificial intelligence and machine learning to create an even more personalized user experience.
The Importance of UX Design
Technology companies are leaning more on personalized, user-centered experiences. UX design is a process that cultivates unique user experiences through good design and technology. UX design is also an area in technology that continues to grow, with top companies like Facebook, Audible, Google, and LinkedIn hiring UX designers.
Ultimately, pursuing a career in UX design can start with training as a full-stack developer, and can be an ideal option for someone who wants to pursue a creative or communication-based career, while still venturing into technology.
Sophia Acevedo is a journalist based in Southern California. She is a 2020 graduate from California State University, Fullerton, and a proud Daily Titan alum.