UX and UI are not the same; but even some industry experts use the terms interchangeably. During the last decade, UI and UX designers have become popular because many companies are prioritizing UI and UX design to build amazing websites.
Let’s take a look at how UX and UI are different and how they help shape projects.
What is UX?
UX or user experience is the overall experience a user has with a company and its products. Good or bad user experience determines how easy or hard it is to interact with each element of a product or service.
For example, do users experience smooth, seamless or intuitive design when using your website? Does the button position or color encourage clicking? Does adding more steps to the onboarding process add to clarity? UX is responsible for answering these types of questions.
UX is researching or identifying customer’s pain points, potential market gaps and competitor analysis. Aside from focusing on customer’s unmet needs it also takes into account business goals and objectives to build products and services that align with a company’s mission and vision.
Designer and information architect Peter Morville developed the User Experience Honeycomb to illustrate the 7 facets of user design.
This diagram highlights areas that are important to good user experience. It’s a helpful tool for businessmen, shareholders and UX designers to continuously improve products and services.
What is UI?
User Interface focuses on design and layout. They focus on how each element of a product or service will look – including buttons, place holders, checkboxes and images – visual elements clients interact with.
UX determines how people with interact with it and UI focuses on the product’s aesthetics. UI designers conduct market research to find out customer’s needs and desires to design a functioning product. UI designers keep themselves updated on graphic trends and patterns that evolve around customer’s taste and behavior changes.
Consumers today interact with products and services on a multi-screen platform where smartphones reign supreme. Responsive web design is one of the ultimate goals of UI designers. They design interfaces that optimize views on different devices so that products or services are aesthetically pleasing when they’re viewed on different screens like desktops and smartphones. Instead of creating different version for each screen size, they create one version that scales content and element to match any screen size.
Key Differences Between UX and UI
UX and UI are both critical elements that can make or break a website or product. They work together but they also have key differences.
The most important thing to remember is that UX searches for solutions while UI determines the look.
UX is concerned with the user’s expectations. Their goal is to locate and solve problems users are struggling with. UI on the other hand creates a website’s or product’s interface based on functional requirements and applies design theories, standard and aesthetics to create a world class experience on screen.
In other words, UX focuses on user journey while UI focuses on product snapshots.
UX and UI Work Together
UX and UI are very different. Comparing them means that they can work independently without affecting each other, but this is not true. UX and UI complement each other so that users and customers can have the best user experience. UX defines where a customer wants to go and UI helps them get there.
They are equally important. No matter how beautiful the UI is, without UX customers will find the product useless because they will find their needs unmet. Without pleasing UI design, even great UX will become half baked.
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