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User Experience Design for Web and Mobile: Minimize User Errors, Maximize Desirable Outcomes

User experience design is fascinating because it deals with both objective and subjective experiences. On an objective level, typically from the technical standpoint, a feature on the web and mobile might be functioning properly. However, if users encounter trouble using the feature, or even locating it, we can argue that the system can be regarded broken.

As a starting point of creating an optimal user experience design, we need to find out information about the target audience, their commitment to use the site, and their preferences for web and mobile media. We discover answers to questions such as:

  • Who is a typical user of the web and mobile site / feature?
  • How much time do they spend on the site?
  • How frequently do they visit the site?
  • Is there any time for a learning curve?
  • What is threshold of a visitor leaving the page or site?
  • What is the most wanted action that takes place on the site?

When specking new features, we want to make sure that the target users have been properly heard; and that they have given feedback on the type of  features they find valuable. Increasingly the web and mobile experience is so much more than a traditional one-way interaction (such as navigating through web pages and using a contact form): More and more sites and apps are built on the staple of member exclusive features that typically require registration and a user account creation. User experience design is crucially important in these extensive web application rich user interactive web and mobile sites; users need to be able to understand the site’s purpose and its key functionalities, use them without errors, and ideally enjoy the process.

Standard key features to optimize for dynamic sites are:

  • Placement for login and register buttons
  • Easy to use pleasant online forms
  • Attractive and functional visual environment
  • Error messages
  • Email notifications
  • My Account structures
  • Call-to-action button and links

Furthermore, increased usability can be offered by developing customizable dynamic features such as:

  • User can adjust or organize content structure for My Account dashboard
  • User can adjust or organize content structure for a landing page
  • User can choose and adjust notification settings
  • User can create custom feeds according to interest
  • User can save content

We can also get more information about the user behavior by developing dynamic tracking features such as:

  • Run reports on logged in/log out times
  • Run reports on member action
  • Run reports on most visited pages
  • Create visual reports on data
  • Provide statistics on latest action
  • Export any data

User experience design is not exact science. User experience is something that can be improved and honed, over and over again. The more time we can have to hone the interfaces and user flows, the better the results. The more feedback and observations we can receive from the actual users (and/or focus groups), the better the results.

The goal of user experience design is simple: Improve usability of web and mobile interfaces. Minimize user errors. Maximize desirable outcomes. In short: Create pleasant user experiences.

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