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Step By Step Guide To Design Process: The Capyba Way.

Nowadays, the term UX design is all over the internet and most companies have invested a lot of time and money in improving their UX designs in 2022, or even in creating new ux design solutions to support their offline business, such as websites or apps. That doesn’t come as a surprise, since every year more businesses are relying on the online world for the success of their products. In this article, I will tell you what UX design is, why it is so crucial for the success of your product, and, I will guide you through the process Capyba follows to create successful UX designs, as well as the challenges ux designers face during the process.

If you want to jump in to any specific section, you can follow these links:

  1. Research and Planning.

What is UX Design and UX Design Process and Why are they so Important?

According to the Interaction Design Foundation, UX Design or User Experience Design is the process design teams use to create products that provide meaningful and relevant experiences to users.

That means UX design is the aspect of the design that covers aspects of the usability and functionality of the product.

UX design is centered on the user and its needs, and that’s what makes it so important. It pretends to facilitate the user journey to complete a specific task, as well as make it more pleasant. Therefore, a good UX design is expected to generate more leads, as users will be unconsciously encouraged to take action.

The UX design process is often described as a list of steps that designers need to follow strictly one by one. However, it is actually a cyclical process and, even those steps everyone is talking about are repeated several times before getting to the developing phase of the product.

Moreover, depending on the core of the product, the ux design process can vary, giving more importance to one step over the others. For example, according to our designer Jose Gervasio:

Some projects may take two days for the research phase and 3 months to complete the final design, while other projects may take a longer time in the research phase and a bit less time in the rest of the stages. (Jose Gervarsio, designer at Capyba).

As a design driven software agency, Capyba relies heavily on the UI and UX design of the products it creates. Our team believes the development phase is important, but it is the design, and mostly, the UX design, which will define a product´s success. Therefore, Capyba puts a great part of its efforts into that phase.

At Capyba, the UX design process, thus, is a little bit different from other design guides. Right below, I will take you through the steps our team believes necessary to achieve a successful UX design, and I will give you a brief explanation on how to act on each step.

So, let’s get started.

What are the steps Capyba follows to achieve Successful UX designs?

Researching and planning.

Experts often say that the very first step in the UX design process is finding the problem. However, our team believes it is a bit more than that.

Often people get confused with the statement of ¨finding the user´s problem¨. It is like: Finding the problem? What does that exactly mean? How can I know what problem my users are facing?

That’s why at Capyba we give it a different approach, assigning the first step as the research phase.

Here, it is important to tackle several aspects to find out what the so-called user problem is. Below you can find the sub-steps we take:

  • User research. First of all, it is necessary to know the user. Knowing who is in your business´s niche, talking to them and observing their behavior is the best way to find out what problem they are facing.

There are several ways you can do that. Experts often recommend interviewing your audience. And that is indeed a good option. However, it is often not enough, because users don´t usually know what they want and they will unconsciously try to please you by saying what you want to hear.

So, although it is good to take the interviews as a first step of the user research, don’t rely just on that.

The questions you ask you users are also quite important here. They need to be very objective and defining. For example, imagine you are creating an online bank application, you could ask your users questions such as:

-Are you currently using any online bank solution?

-Which one?

-Do you find it handy?

-Why do you like it/ dislike it?

-How would you improve it?

-What features do you think it’s missing?

Those questions are objective enough for your users not to unconsciously lie, and with them, you can know if there is a need for that specific product, who your competitors are and what issues they are not tackling with their solution.

After having those questions answered, you can move on to other techniques such as: focus groups, online observation or surveys. Our favorite is online observation, because the information can be broader and users are not conditioned to specific questions or other’s opinions. You can do online observation by exploring your niche´s forums, online communities, and competitor´s reviews.

  • The second aspect you need to research is your competitors. Find out what similar solutions are they currently offering, if any. We recommend not reinventing the wheel and go for solutions that are already being somehow offered, since that means there is really a problem there and the risk will be lower. However, if you are up to take a bigger risk and strongly believe in your solution, GO FOR IT!

When you know how your competitors are solving the user´s problem, find any possible flaws, bugs, missing features or subproblems that are not being tackled in their solution. That way, you can differentiate from the competition and create a more appealing UX design.

  • Finally, research the market. Find out your niche´s trends, how the market is facing the problem and what is the market lacking.

After the research, you will have a clear mind of what you want to do, what you want to reach and how you will do it. However, it is always good to write it down and have it always close. That’s what we call the planning phase, where we write down the following points:

  • What the user´s problem is.

Now that we know what you need to solve, we need to know how to solve it. So we leave the research phase closed to move on to the ideation phase.

Ideation.

The ideation phase is when designers get together with the team to explore the problem more deeply and find possible creative solutions to it.

For that purpose, designers need to put themselves in the feet of the end user and go throughout their journey to complete each task.

Here, it is a good option to make use of storyboards and personas to have a clearer understanding of the user and their journey. From the main page of the app/website, how will the user complete the task that will solve their problem? How might we make it easier for them?

During the process, designers have a brainstorming session with the team to bring up some solutions. Here, we never judge any ideas, since we believe this is the moment to let out team members’ minds wander free. However, the discussion of the ideas is important and it is equally important to analyze each idea and understand which ones are better for the end user. For that reason, it is always good to go through this stage with a team and not by yourself.

When we have all the solutions written down, we move on to the next phase: Definition. However, the ideation phase is not closed yet. We might come back to it later to improve the solution.

Definition.

During the definition phase, we take the list of possible solutions and we choose the best one to solve the problem.

Then, we define the design´s unique value proposition, and how will it be different from the competition.

It is good to document this phase too, in order to have insights in case there is a need to come back to it later (which will probably happen, because no one reaches success at first trial).

Prototyping and Evaluation.

After defining the problem, knowing who the end user is, and having a great solution in mind, designers do a sketching version of the design they have in mind. That will be handy to know what features the solution will include, where each feature goes, and what the process of completing the task will be.

We test it with the team and change what is needed to have the perfect solution. When everything looks nice, we often do a low-fidelity prototype (depending on the complexity of the solution and the time available), which we ideally test with the end users to identify usability issues. However, this is not always possible, so sometimes it is good to have a back-up of testers.

Finally, we create a high fidelity prototype, using Figma, and we test it with the end users.

When everything looks good, the design team sets up what we call critique sessions, which are moments to discuss the design and the solution, and come up with improvement points for both.

Of course, the ux design process is a cyclical process, so after the testing we often go back to previous stages. Mostly we jump from evaluation to prototyping several times.

At last, we also create design specifications and systems that will include design assets, patterns, components and styles for developers to be able to know what they need to do. For us, it is really important to deliver proper product documentation and style guides, to facilitate a very nice and fluid handoff process for the development team. Thus, we make a great effort at this stage.

Launching, Analyzing and Improving.

Finally, we launch the design and start the development phase. However, the UX, as well the UI design is never totally finished. The trends keep changing and we will only know the real success of a design once it is launched in the market and a bigger number of end users are able to interact with it.

Thus, we like to extend the collaborations and keep working together with our partners during the development phase and after, to be able to maintain the solution, keep analyzing the metrics and improving the user experience to finally create the most suitable solution for each niche.

What are the Main UX Design Challenges?

According to Jose Gervasio, one of Capyba’s designers ¨a common challenge, mostly, for beginners, is to find the perfect balance between usability and aesthetics. It is important to create something beautiful, but more important is to create a design that is functional and easy to use.¨

It is important to create something beautiful, but more important is to create a design that is functional and easy to use. (Jose Gervasio, 2022)

Another big challenge, as Gervasio says, is to manage your time. ¨The designer needs to choose the tests correctly, in order to understand the user’s needs and follow the partner´s restrictions regarding time and budget.¨ That’s why it is important to set objectives and know what is going to add more value to the project, with those objectives in mind.

According to another of Capyba´s great designers, Mariana Moraes, ¨a big challenge in the UX design process is to understand the main problem (s) the design needs to solve.

¨As designers, we need to relate to each user, understand their environments, their journeys. There are many possibilities out there and, having that vision of an innovative solution, as well as setting the user as the main focus point, is definitely the biggest task we have during the process. Furthermore, aligning that with the nowadays technologies and the feasibility of the development, is as important as challenging.¨ (Mariana Moraes, 2022).

Finally, Moraes adds that ¨making the user experience satisfying, as well as pleasant and easy to get the task done is also a challenge design teams usually face.¨

Conclusion.

Making a successful UX design is not easy, and neither is it often a short process. However, it is fun, and definitely worth it when done correctly.

At Capyba, we love doing it, and we want to help businesses to do it by themselves, as much as possible. That’s why I wrote this guide to help your business understand and complete the process in-house.

However, if you are still lost, don´t have the resources needed, or it is just too much, we are willing to help you! Send us a message and let’s create something awesome together!

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Design, Software and Business — Capyba Blog

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