If you are into creating a product that has the customer in mind, then UX design is your thing. It’s so much more than just designing for a screen since it takes into account all the aspects of a product or service. While a designer makes a button, a flow, or a toggle beautiful and functional, a UX designer focuses on all the disciplines that make the user experience great as a whole.
We need to stop thinking about UX design as something static, possibly consisting of nicely designed wireframes and animations. While it does contain all these, it is much more than that.
This is where you should keep in mind that UX is not UI. Why? Because the interface is not the solution and because aesthetics alone won’t provide great usability. UI design is mostly about how something looks. UX design is more about how something looks, feels, and works.
Wireframing, prototyping, A/B testing, and user behavior analytics tools
UXPin is a product design tool that allows designing wireframes, mockups, and prototypes as well as to collaborate. What’s really helpful is that it synchronizes with Sketch and Photoshop files. So, after you upload them, you can change them into interactive prototypes. It’s a tool worth trying because it makes designing apps less time consuming and really enjoyable.
Figma is an interface designing app that lets you draw shapes, add pictures, change colors, fonts and layout pages exactly the way you want. It also has collaboration features so that several designers can design websites and apps together in real time.
InVision is mostly a prototyping tool since it relies on you to design the pages somewhere else (either Sketch, Photoshop, Figma etc.) and then import the designs into InVision. Then you can link these up so your app feels like it’s already developed. This way, the testers can tap around and navigate through pages. And you will be able to gather valuable user feedback and improve the UX design accordingly.
Adobe XD is another UX/UI design and collaboration tool. It’s great for designing within parameters, which makes going responsive way easier. Adobe also put a lot of effort into limiting XD’s feature set to just what you need. It has removed all unnecessary icons and tools. In addition, while in Photoshop, you have to select layers, in XD, you can simply click on the object and edit it.
Inapptics is an analytics platform that helps analyze user behavior in mobile apps. It allows seeing every action users perform on each and every screen, e.g. where they tap and how they navigate in the app. This way, you can discover issues related to user experience and improve your app.
Optimizely helps companies optimize their websites and apps by conducting experiments. It is great for A/B testing since it helps discover what works best for attracting new customers and users. And it’s the best option for companies that have never done A/B testing/experimenting before and have a smaller budget. In fact, Opimizely is much easier to implement than most enterprise software.
Resources to get started with UX design
Behance is an online creative community where users share their work. A wide array of creatives is included here, people like graphic designers, illustrators, UX/UI designers, web designers, typographers and more. So, this is a great platform to be on if you want to get daily design motivation.
At the very beginning, Dribbble was a place where designers were showing their daily work in small pieces. The main difference between Behance and Dribbble is within the scope of the project which you want to share. Usually, you show up to 3 screens of your work on Dribbble, but you need to prepare a much bigger presentation to get noticed on Behance. On the other hand, Dribbble is a great place for entrepreneurs to find aspiring designers.
This one is an online UX publication that discusses the latest trends in UX design and strategy. The best thing about this site is that it offers a community with location-based listings. You can find local talks, conferences, meetups, and classes here.
Tubik studio is a design agency that specializes in mobile/web design and development, as well as, motion design, graphics, and branding. They have a lot to share with UX designers and potential clients. In Tubik blog you can read about a wide array of user experience design topics that can help design better websites and applications.
If you do not have much time for web surfing and you simply want the best industry articles handpicked for you, then you can subscribe to Sarah Doody’s The UX Notebook which is a weekly UX newsletter for UX designers and product managers.
Do you know what is the best thing to do during a daily work commute? Yes, listening to podcasts. “Design Matters with Debbie Millman” is a great podcast to listen to. You can find some other awesome podcasts too.
Now that you have a handful of useful tools and resources to get started with UX design, it’s time to actually begin creating. We are not saying it will be easy, but we are guaranteeing that it will be fun. Go design!