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Want to start reading about UX design but don’t know where to begin?

Well, that’s not a surprise since there are so many great books out there finding the right one for you can be a bit daunting.

To help, here are our recommendations of UX books we’ve read and love. These aren’t the only great books out there, but every book on this list definitely has a claim to being an all-time great one.

Enjoy!

1. Don’t Make Me Think – Steve Krug

Don’t make me think is Krug’s First Law of Usability. The book is a light-read that covers all the basics of UX, human–computer interaction and web usability you need to know.

It explains the notion that a good online experience should let users accomplish their intended tasks as easily and directly as possible. If users need to stop to think about that they’re doing then it isn’t designed well enough.

Krug points out ways to reduce clutter, noise and anything unnecessary to make designs simpler, providing clear examples accompanying each rule.

 

2. Smashing UX Design: Foundations for Designing Online User Experiences – Jesmond Allen and James Chudley

Smashing Magazine is probably the most popular resource for web designers and developers around the world. So when they publish a book, you should probably pay attention.

The book aims to be a complete reference manual for the entire UX and User Centered Design process, examining different UX tools and techniques.

The book includes high-quality illustrations, examples, top tips, and detailed how-tos to share UX knowledge.

 

3. Designing Web Usability – Jakob Nielsen

Jakob Nielsen is the co-founder of world renowned usability consultancy NN/g and also developed what’s become the most referenced set of usability heuristics for UI design.

Designing Web Usability is Nielsen’s definitive guide to website usability and is a must-have for any usability professional. The book provides guidelines for everything web, from page and content design to designing accessibility for users with disabilities.

 

4. The Design of Everyday Things – Donald Norman

The second half of the founding team behind the NN/g consultancy, Don Norman is widely held to be the one responsible for inventing the term “User Experience”.

Norman’s book includes timeless solutions to design flaws backed by psychology principles. This book will change the way you perceive and experience your physical surroundings and will raise your expectations about how things should be designed.

 

5. 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People – Susan Weinschenk

A behavioral psychologist who’s been working in the field of design and user experience since 1985, Susan Weinschenk believes designing without understanding the science behind how people behave is what results in unusable and inefficient products.

Her book is a collection of scientific theories and research side-by-side with practical examples that act as a guide for designers to understand people’s behaviour. It breaks down how people behave, from the way they think, see, remember, focus, feel and more.

 

6. Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-it-yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems – Steve Krug

We know the value and necessity of usability testing, but for a lot of businesses and startups, it’s not always financially feasible to invest in hiring usability consultants.

Instead of accepting “I can’t afford it” as an excuse, Steve Krug published this book as a how-to companion to “Don’t Make Me Think”, with step-by-step guide for usability testing that anyone can do on their own.

Krug explains how to test any design, understand which problems to be focusing on and use the “least you can do” approach to fix them.

Rocket Surgery Made Easy includes demonstration videos, before-and-after examples, humorous illustrations, and practical advice to facilitate grasping the ideas better.

 

7. Handbook of Usability Testing: How to Plan, Design, and Conduct Effective Tests – Jeffrey Rubin and Dana Chisnell

If there’s one book you need to read in order to learn everything there is to learn about usability testing, it’s this one. This fully revised handbook provides clear, step-by-step guidelines of every aspect of a usability testing project.

You’ll learn how to recognize factors that limit usability, decide where testing should occur, set up a test plan to assess goals for your product’s usability, and more. The book also includes numerous case studies and tips that are proof of the importance of applying usability testing.

 

8. Mobile First – Luke Wroblewski

Currently Product Director at Google, Luke Wroblewski shares all his knowledge in this entertaining, to-the-point guidebook. Mobile First makes the case for why websites and applications should increasingly be designed for mobile first.

With more advances in technology, mobile devices are becoming dominantly used by people to get things done. Luke outlines how web design teams can make the transition from designing for desktops/laptops to mobile to design delightful experiences.

 

9. The Elements of User Experience: User-Centered Design for the Web and Beyond – Jesse James Garrett

If we had to pick one book to give to someone as the perfect entrance to all things UX, it would be this one.

The Elements of User Experience provides a conceptual framework for understanding the field of UX and has come to define the core principles of the practice.

Designed to be read easily within a few hours, the book helps readers understand the big picture of web user experience development and eliminates the complexity of creating user-centered designs. It covers the “why” of developing for the web rather than the “how”. If you need to understand the context for the decisions that user experience practitioners make, this book is for you.

 

10. Interviewing Users: How to Uncover Compelling Insights – Steve Portigal

An essential tool for all researchers (not just UX) Interviewing Users will help you learn how to ask the right questions and draw the correct insights when conducting user interviews. It provides techniques and steps to follow for everything from before the interview even happens to documentation and optimization of the interview.

Steve Portigal uses stories and examples from his 15 years of experience to show how interviewing can be incorporated into the design process, helping you learn the best and right information to inform and inspire your design.

 

11. Lean UX: Applying Lean Principles to Improve User Experience – Jeff Gothelf

Taking its lead from Lean and Agile development theories, Lean UX is a must-read for anyone who’s managing a product team.

Full of practical advice, Jeff Gothelf teaches you everything you need to know about the principles, tactics and techniques of applying lean processes to UX design.

Set up in three sections, first, delivering an introduction to what Lean UX is and it’s founding principles. Gothelf goes on to discuss the process of Lean UX and why each step is important, and in Section 3 covers the application of Lean UX practices into your organization.

 

12. Usable Usability: Simple Steps for Making Stuff Better – Eric Reiss

Known for his work in the field of information architecture, usability and service design, Eric Reiss shares his knowledge from decades of experience in this book.

Usable Usability is a comprehensive guide to spotting and fixing usability problems. The book teaches you how to understand a user’s needs, reveals techniques for exceeding user expectations and provides advice for improving the overall quality of a user’s experience.

 

13. Measuring the User Experience: Collecting, Analyzing, and Presenting Usability Metrics – Tom Tullis, Bill Albert

Measuring the User Experience is a how-to guide for to evaluate the user experience for any product.

Authors Tullis and Albert share their decades of experience in UX with practical lessons throughout the book. They explore different usability metrics, considering best methods for collecting, analyzing, and presenting the data. The book includes in-depth case studies to show how organizations have successfully used usability metrics and the information they revealed.

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Tools Every UX Pro Should Know About http://uxbert.com/ux-tools-every-design-professional-should-know-about/ Wed, 29 Aug 2018 09:17:19 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=14611 A list of the most popular available tools UX professionals use for user research, design, analytics and project management.

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With 100s of tools available for your UX projects, finding the best one for your needs can be overwhelming.

To help save you time and effort, here’s a list of some of the most popular tools out there.

Mind Mapping & Diagramming

MindJet

Developed by Mindjet, this is one of the best mind mapping softwares available. You can manage and plan projects, brainstorm, compile research, organize large amounts of information and much more with the help of their digital mind maps.

Visio

Visio helps you increase productivity by allowing you to visualize information using diagrams, graphs, hierarchies,  flowcharts and more. You can make your data instantly understandable by using the available icons, shapes, symbols, and colors to incorporate into your diagrams.

Gliffy

An easy-to-use, low cost web app tool to create user flows and diagrams. It integrates directly with Google Drive and allows for collaboration with your team.

XMind

A mind mapping and brainstorming software created by XMind Ltd. In addition to the management elements, the software can capture ideas, clarify thinking, manage complex information, and promote team collaboration for higher productivity.

Wireframing, Prototyping & Interface Design

Sketch

Sketch is a popular app to design high fidelity interfaces, websites and mobile apps. Although it’s available only on Mac, it makes up for that by offering some amazing features.

It’s quite similar to Photoshop and Illustrator but more flexible when it comes to UX design.

Sketch allows UX designers to avoid a lot of unpleasant manual adjustments by easily adapting to changing styles, sizes and layouts. New objects are automatically attached to a new layer allowing for creative combinations and easier navigation. You can also easily export your layers very easily.

Framer

Framer is a great tool to create high fidelity platforms and fluid native apps .

It’s basically an environment for writing coffeescript (simple version of javascript) with a good interface to display and affect it in the preview.

However, the learning curve can be steep for a designer who doesn’t know how to code. If you just need low-fi prototypes to test a hypothesis or validate your ideas, Framer might not be the tool for you.

Axure RP

Axure RP is a comprehensive UX tool that’s probably the tool of choice for a lot of UX professionals out there but with a steep learning curve.

Essentially it’s a prototyping tool with diagramming, documentation, and interactive tools to design and share interactive prototypes and specifications. Both static, low-fidelity prototypes and more sophisticated, interactive ones can be created by Axure.

Omnigraffle

OminiGraffle is a design tool with extensive options for objects, canvases, templates, inspectors, and stencils to help designers produce a multitude of design deliverables such as user-flow diagrams, sitemaps and wireframes.

The popularity of the tool means that a large number of high-quality, pre-built and reusable resources have been made available for download. This can save a huge amount of time and effort.

Invision

One of the best prototyping and collaboration platforms out there.

There simply isn’t anything else out there that maximizes speed with fidelity. The tool not only allows you to create interactive prototypes from imported designs, but is also useful for collecting feedback, for collaborating on designs and for generally keeping tabs on a design project.

And if that wasn’t enough, InVision now supports remote mobile user testing.

Indigo

Indigo Design is perfect for prototyping interactive and animated web, desktop or mobile apps.

It’s very intuitive and surprisingly fast once you create a few prototypes.  Prototypes can be created from existing mocks (by bringing them in as images) or by building out individual elements for each screen within Indigo Studio.

The built-in screen transitions and touch gestures lets to create prototypes that look, feel, and act like a real app on your mobile device.

Indigo Studio also lets you invite members to publish design alternatives or edit prototypes in a group workspace. It comes with real time commenting, so viewers can add markers and comments directly on the prototype.

Marvel

Marvel is web-based app that is very simple and easy to use.

It has features such as gestures, layering images and user testing. It also offers a Sketch plugin which allows you to do your design work on Sketch but borrow some of the cool features from Marvel such as layering and gestures.

You can make your project a collaborative one, but only with an upgraded account.

Adobe XD

With Adobe XD, you can build high-fidelity prototypes .

The tool is focused around two functionalities: Design, and Prototype. The Design tab is used for creating your design and features simple vector and text tools. The Prototype tab is for previewing, and sharing your design.

Balsamiq

If you don’t want to spend a lot of time on prototyping, you should use Balsamiq.

It’s not the most aesthetic choice, but is simple and highly effective when it comes to creating a useful prototype. It’s quick and doesn’t require a lot of practice to get a handle of it.

You’ll have a concrete version of your early ideas that you can test with users and iterate before moving to something more polished.

UX Pin

A powerful tool that can create extremely realistic high fidelity prototypes.

Although is has a broad range of features, one of its unique functionalities is that it facilitates building responsive clickable prototypes directly in your browser.

The tool also has a Photoshop extension feature that allows designers more flexibility. It might have a steep learning curve, but it is definitely well worth the effort.

User Research

UserTesting

A usability testing tool that enables you to record user feedback as they use a product.

In less than an hour you can run an unmoderated usability test of your website with a predefined user base. UserTesting is also full of useful content if you want to expand your research knowledge.

TechSmith Morae

Morae is a testing suite that allows you to conduct usability testing sessions by recording the screen and the user, incorporating surveys and analysing and editing the final results.

Morae allows you to easily share your research with your team.

UsabilityHub

If you’re looking to analyse single pages, UsabilityHub is a great tool. Designed specifically for usability testing, it provides a series of different tests that can be run: five second tests, first click tests and navigation tests are just three examples.

User Zoom

User Zoom is a UX research and analytics platform which captures user interaction and provides powerful data.

It allows you to test websites and prototypes and also to remotely record user tests. You can perform market research by evaluating multiple websites and competitor websites to provide UX benchmarking. The tool provides insightful reports on user actions, number of clicks, unique views, heat maps and more.

Lookback

Lookback built by the UX guys from Spotify allows you to understand not just behaviour, but emotions and experiences as well.

You can even record the full screen of a device, and use the reverse camera to record the user’s facial expressions at the same time. The recordings appear on Lookbacks dashboard, where a team of people can analyse the results.

Snagit

Screen capture software that allows you to edit your screenshots and videos.

Helio

Helio (used to be Verify) is the easiest way to collect data and analyze user feedback with design surveys. Verify lets you quickly upload any screenshot or image to gather user feedback on your designs.

Project Management & File Management

Slack

Slack is the most popular workplace messaging app currently around. It gives everyone a shared workspace and makes all conversations organized and accessible by making a searchable archive of your team’s tasks and conversations.

Basecamp

Basecamp is a web-based project management and collaboration tool.

With Basecamp, you can manage project tasks, communicate with team members with micro-blogging and live chat, and view project updates. It’s the perfect tool for UX professionals because it allows you to upload visual assets and share them with your colleagues.

Each project can have multiple to-do lists, making it an ideal candidate for integrating multiple teams, such as design with development.

Trello

Trello is a web-based project management tool that offers boards, lists, and cards which enable you to organize and prioritize your projects.

With Trello you can create boards to organize anything you’re working on. It allows you to invite coworkers and clients to collaborate. You can assign tasks to yourself and coworkers and comment on items with your friends.

JIRA

JIRA is a software development tool used primarily by UX professionals to plan, track and release their product. It has a Scrum board which makes task assignment much easier.

JIRA makes it real easy to track bugs and see which issues are still outstanding and how much time was spent on each task.

Evernote

Evernote is a sophisticated note-taking application that is available online and in app format for a range of computers and mobile devices. It enables you to save, remember and keep in sync pretty much anything, including bookmarks, photographs and pieces of text.

Evernote also has the facility to search text across all notes, whether they are typed text or photographs of hand-written notes.

Google Drive

Most projects require some sort of written documentation, either in the form of spreadsheets or actual documents; and that documentation is usually the result of a collaboration between team members and stakeholders.

Google Drive allows for creating those documents, collaborating in real time and tracking different versions. Plus, it runs in your browser and it’s free.

Analytics

Kissmetrics

A great analytics tool which is very easy to set up and use. It helps you create funnels and reports based on customer behavior on your website.

CrazyEgg

CrazyEgg is a heat mapping tool that shows you exactly where users go to on your site, where they stop on the page and for how long. It’s simple, affordable and yes there’s a free trial too.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics tells you everything you need to know about the performance of your website. It turns customer insights into actionable solutions and shows you how effective your current strategy is.

Optimizely

Optimizely, like UserTesting, makes it easy to test and personalize your website and mobile app. However, Optimizely focuses on one specific type of test, A/B testing, so that designers can see how tweaking an interface will affect conversions.

Mixpanel

Mixpanel is a comprehensive tool which enables tracking of each individual user’s journey, from engagement through retention to funnel pathways.

And you only pay for the metrics you use. Mixpanel automatically collects everything but you’ll only be charged for those metrics when you start analysing them.

Hotjar

If heatmaps are your thing, Hotjar offers a comprehensive service, with added bonuses such as conversion funnels, form analysis, polls and surveys.

 

At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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7 Great UX Presentations on Slideshare http://uxbert.com/7-great-ux-presentations-slideshare/ Wed, 02 May 2018 13:48:34 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10246 Slideshare is the world's largest professional content sharing community. So it’s safe to say it’s a great place to go for presentations on any topic. We’ve gathered 7 great presentations that cover steps, guidelines and psychology of UX.

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Slideshare is one of the world’s largest professional content sharing community. So it’s safe to say it’s a great place to go for presentations on any topic.

We’ve collected 7 great UX presentations from slideshare that we think do a great job explaining and illustrating UX definitions, processes, guidelines and more.

1. What is UX? by David Carr 

Looking for a simple way to understand what UX is with real-life examples? Then look no further, learn about UX briefs and their elements, followed by UX Process examples and wireframes.

 

2. Content UI Design Usability User by Jayan Narayanan 

This slideshare busts UX and UI myths, breaks down the elements of UX and explores what UI is, followed with new trends and disciplines for UX design.

 

3. UX 101: A quick & dirty introduction to user experience strategy & design by Morgan McKeagney 

An excellent introduction to understanding what UX is, followed by it’s elements and processes. Overall great coverage to learn how to approach UX.

 

4. UI/UX Design by Sumit Singh

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in UI Design, this is the perfect slideshare for you. It asks and answers questions with thorough examples to help set you on the right path in making your career choice.

 

5. Simple Steps to Great UX/UI by Koombea

Breaking down the difference between UX and UI, this slideshare explains the importance in both as well as design tools to use to create amazing products.

 

6. Usable Psychology for UX/UI Designers by Maor Shabbat

No UX is complete without taking into consideration users behaviour. Understanding the psychology behind how users use your products sn one of the core foundations to designing great UX.

 

7. UX & Design Riyadh: Usability Guidelines for Websites & Mobile Apps by UXBERT Labs 

A thorough presentation covering the basics of UX Design and how it’s implemented. Filled with guidance and examples on how to ensure delivering an excellent UX.

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At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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13 Psychology Principles All UX Designers Should Know http://uxbert.com/ux-psychology-principles-design-ux/ Mon, 30 Apr 2018 13:40:22 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=11610 In this article we detail 13 psychological principles that UX designers should understand and use when designing any product.

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Psychology has an important role in designing the user experience.

By understanding how different psychology principles influence human behaviour, you can design your products to elicit specific responses and actions from your users.

To get you started, we’ve compiled and simplified 13 psychological principles that will help improve the usability, aesthetics and effectiveness of your designs.

1. Hick’s Law

2. Gestalt Principles of Visual Perception

3. Psychology of Persuasion

4. Selective Disregard and Change Blindness

5. Memory Limitations

6. Mental Models

7. Psychology of Colors

8. Von Restorff Effect

9. Visceral Reactions

10. Dual Coding Theory

11. Psychology of Shapes

12. Pareto Principle, or 80/20 Rule

13. Fitt’s Law

 

1. Hick’s Law

Imagine going into a restaurant that has over 100 items on the menu. Reading through all the options, and making a decision is going to take much longer than if the menu only had 20 items to choose from. The same goes for designing interfaces.

Hick’s law states that the time it takes for users to make a decision increases as the number of choices offered increase.

Hick's Law Graph

Whether or not you are consciously aware of it, the decisions you make are influenced by what you perceive as “worth it”. You subconsciously weigh the costs and benefits of a decision before you take it. This is known as the cost-benefit analysis.

The most effective way of getting people to take action is to make the target action as simple as possible while ensuring maximum benefit out of it. If the costs outweigh the benefits, users won’t take action.

So how do you apply Hick’s law to your web design?

One simple rule. Keep in mind that users arrive at your website with a specific goal. Remove unnecessary links, images, text and buttons from pages to allow users to find what they need and do what they want as quickly as possible, no distractions.

This website is cluttered with distractions irrelevant to the purpose of the website, making it probably the most unusable website out there. (Source: www.lingscars.com)

This website is cluttered with distractions irrelevant to the purpose of the website, making it probably the most unusable website on the internet. (Source: www.lingscars.com)

Hick’s law in your design also applies to how you arrange your information architecture. Instead of providing all the navigation options immediately, give users broad categories to start off with, then break them down into further subcategories.

North Face Menu Dropdown

Breakdown of options into categories and good use of white space makes the user more likely to respond faster. (Source: www.thenorthface.com)

Shorten long lists and reduce the amount of options where possible. In cases where long lists are inevitabe, limit the number of options the user can view at a single time to make scanning easier and faster.

hickslaw

Break down complex processes, such as registration or checkout processes, into more manageable and simplified steps. Offer clear paths to reduce navigation time and bounce rates in order to create a delightful user experience.

Your aim should always be to reduce the time it takes for users to make their decisions, so they end up making one.

2. Gestalt Principles of Visual Perception

Our brain processes information in a fascinating way.

Often times our perception is manipulated by how we see objects and relate them to each other based on spacing. Gaps, incongruities or disturbances are overlooked by our brain based on the laws of organization. 

The Gestalt theory explains that viewers subconsciously group together separated objects to perceive them as a whole

The principles of Gestalt theory are organized into six categories:

Gestalt Principles

Law of Symmetry: Humans naturally find symmetry aesthetically pleasing, so when we look at certain objects, we see them as symmetrical shapes that form around their centers. Starbucks and McDonald’s logos are great examples of how symmetry is applied in design.

 

Starbucks Logo                         Mcdonald's Logo

Law of Proximity: When elements are placed close together they are perceived as a group. The example below show the difference in the lines of the adidas logo. When the three lines in are placed at random, further away from each other, they are not perceived as one unit. The close proximity of the slanted lines is what unifies them to be seen as one image. 

Adidas Logo

 

Similarly, Unilever’s logo consists of several distinct objects, but is wholly seen as one unit because they are in close proximity to each other and are similar in color and size.

 

Unilever Logo

 

Law of Similarity: When placed in close proximity to each other, similar objects are often related to each other. The example below shows identical circles placed beside each other, but because they are colored differently, each row is perceived as a single unit.

 

Law of Similarity

 

Figure and Ground: Users differentiate between an object (figure) and its surrounding area (ground) and can switch between them to view different images. The logo for the Hope for African Children Initiative makes use of this principle by creatively using the white space as the African map silhouette while forming the image of a child and an adult with the surrounding orange shades.

 

Hope For African Children Initiative Logo

 

Law of Closure: An incomplete object is perceived by the brain as a whole by mentally filling in missing information. When users see IBM’s logo their brain unconsciously fills in the gaps to complete the shape of the letters making it legible.

 

IBM logo

 

Law on Continuity: This psychological phenomenon occurs when the eye is compelled to move through one object and continue to another object. This is often achieved through the creation of curved lines, allowing the eye to flow with the line. The logo for Hotel Association of Canada makes the user’s eye naturally follow the smooth flowing crossbar of the “H” that leads directly to the maple leaf.

Hotel Association of Canada

 

3. The Psychology of Persuasion

Influencing others is a science of human behaviour that can be used to help improve the success of your business. Users need to be convinced before taking action on any website. To gain and maintain satisfied users,the Psychology of Persuasion can be one of the most powerful approaches.

Dr. Robert Cialdini in his book, “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion” coined the 6 Principles of Influence and they are:

Reciprocity

Offering something of value upfront to your users will make them feel indebted to you and more to take a desired action. A common example of this is offering free ebooks, blog posts, podcasts or other free content in return for the user’s email address.

everydaycarry.com law of reciprocation

This website offers free newsletters containing giveaways in exchange for the users email address, creating a high benefit to low cost. (Source: http://everydaycarry.com)

Authority

People tend to obey experts and authoritative figures of high-status as they are regarded as highly trustworthy. Authority is usually conveyed through titles (Dr., Prof., CEO), visual appearance and success of a brand.

Academic and high-status titles help people rely on others by assuming that they have an extensive knowledge of the field. Associations with successful companies are often mentioned to establish a certain level of respect and credibility of the company. 

Law of Authority

(Source: www.atomic.io)

Law of Authority

Both companies use authority by providing leading brand clients to establish a sense of trust and reliability with their services. (Source: www.principleformac.com)

Scarcity

People attach more value to things that are limited in number or are available for a limited time. Limited inclusion, creating a sense of exclusivity by making the service “invite-only” or previewing limited information without a signup, is also a major aspect of the scarcity principle. It triggers a psychological phenomenon known as FOMO, or “Fear of Missing Out”.

A good example of this is used on Booking.com where visitors are shown how many rooms are left, creating a sense of urgency to make a decision before it’s too late. Groupon and many other online ecommerce websites also use the scarcity principle by providing a countdown to the deadline of the offer.

Booking scarcity

Displaying the limited number of remaining rooms makes the user more likely to take an action before there are none left. (Source: www.booking.com)

Countdown Timer

This online store uses a countdown timer for a limited time sale to create a sense of urgency in the user to take action before they miss out on the savings. (Source: www.extrastores.com)

Liking

You are more likely to agree to requests made by the people you like. From your closest friends to complete strangers who you are attracted to. Major brands often use celebrities, athletes and models to make products and services more favorable.

Turkish Airlines Celebrity Ad

Turkish Airlines cleverly used two admirable athletes loved by millions to promote their brand and created a buzz around their airlines. (Source: www.turkishairlines.com)

People agree and follow others that are similar to them in terms of interests, opinions, personality and other traits. Interacting with your users through different channels of social media and blog posts to establish a relatable feeling to your users will definitely help improve your reviews and ratings.

Social proof

People don’t always know why they behave the way they do. We look to others to guide our behaviour and decide what the “right” thing to do is. We look for validation for our actions and decisions from experts, celebrities, previous users, large groups or peers.

In e-commerce, websites use social proof such as ratings, reviews, and recommendations to attract other users and guide them in making their purchase decisions. Amazon has a section of “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” to make items more relatable to you and get users to think “If they need it, I need it too”.

Amazon Recommendations

Amazon influences customers using social proof. (Source: www.amazon.com)

 

Reviews

Extra stores website makes use of expert and customer reviews and ratings to persuade users in their purchase decisions. (Source: www.extrastores.com)

4. Selective Disregard and Change Blindness

Want to know where to place certain information on your website?

Then it’s important to understand your users. If you don’t understand how users interpret what they see, you can’t make designs that will be effective.

When online, users have learned to naturally ignore what they consider irrelevant. This behavior is known as selective disregard.

Because it is impossible to give attention to every stimulus in our environment, we use selective attention to select what stimuli are important as events occur.

With an attention span that has dropped from 12s to 8s since the mobile revolution began, users look for what they need as quickly as possible. If they don’t find it immediately on your site, they won’t hesitate to search elsewhere.

Selective Disregard Heat map

The highlighted areas show where the users look while using this site, anything outside these areas could go unnoticed. (Source: www.eyequant.com)

Change blindness occurs when a change in visual representation takes place but the observer does not notice the change. In web design, change blindness can occur from an interruption to our visual perception such as page reload, blinking, page orientation changes, or quick changes in visual details.

Change blindness can affect critical information such as error messages and navigation menus, leading to user confusion and task failure. Placement and contrast of content is key when designing to avoid being overlooked by users.

Change Blindness

The Add to Cart button on Vans website changes to Out of Stock with no indication that can easily go unnoticed by the user. (Source: www.nngroup.com)

5. Memory Limitations

“Memory is deceptive because it is colored by today’s events.” – Albert Einstein

Memory isn’t always reliable. The way we store information is reconstructed by our thoughts, feelings, beliefs and surrounding environment.

Several studies have shown that people often create false memories in which they either remember things that didn’t happen or remember them differently from the way they really were.

Since memory is suggestive and malleable, it’s important to build designs based on the brain’s habit, or mental models (more on mental models in the next post) because they are easier to remember.

Our working memory capacity is around 10-15 seconds, remembering only 3-4 items at a time.

So while designing, assist users by creating experiences that rely on recognition and not recall. Don’t expect your users to remember things from one page to another, go through endless screens of text, or leave them guessing about what is happening.

Provide user assistance and feedback where possible and an undo option to reduce user frustration when they make mistakes. Personalize experiences to cater to your user’s preferences.

6. Mental Models

Mental models are formed from a person’s experiences and expectations of the real world. People always have a mental model of how to interact with objects or systems.

With increasing time being spent online, users have formed mental models of how to interact with and what to expect from interfaces.

If your product’s design and features don’t match these mental models, then it’s likely your users will initially find the product difficult to use.

To design effective online experiences, you need to match people’s mental models of how they expect to be able to use them.

People expect similar navigation, interactions and terminology throughout their experiences. The most established examples include things like users expecting global navigation to be located at the top of the page, links to be in blue and underlined, and a site’s logo to link back to the home page.

Sign Up Mental Model

Users expect the option of having one-click social sign-ins. (Source: www.conversionxl.com)

Usability testing, task analysis, observations and interviews are just some of the ways to understand what your users’ mental models are and build upon them.

7. The Psychology of Colors

“Color is a power which directly influences the soul.” – Wassily Kandinsky

Color psychology is the science of how color affects human behaviour. Our ability to see color is a highly complex process. Both the eyes and the brain work together in order to translate what we see in colored images. This translation is subjectively associated with feelings and thoughts and is therefore used as a marketing mechanism in many industries.

Studies show that up to 80% of consumers think that color increases brand recognition. When choosing colors for your website and branding, you should understand your target audience, purpose and timing to maximize efficiency of your design and elicit certain emotions associated with your brand. 

But making things look nice also matters. Cognitive psychology research proves that the more attractive a product is, the more usable it is perceived to be. This is known as the Aesthetic Usability Effect. 

Positive feelings and attraction is linked to higher quality, which means if your users like what they see, your sales will increase. People will often overlook usability issues because of pleasant aesthetics.

Let’s take a look at the general characteristics of each color.

Color Psychology

Blue: strong, honest, calm, loyal, trustworthy, secure

Corporate businesses often use blue to convey a neutral sense of trustworthiness. Facebook’s blue color scheme helps convey to users that it’s a secure, strong social network. 

 

fb logoVISA logo

Ford logo

 

 

 

 

Red: energy, love, exciting, action, bold, passionate

Coca-Cola is one of the classic examples of how a company has used red in its branding to communicate how exciting and energetic it is as a product. 

 

Cocacola logo

Redbull logo

Kelloggs logo

 

 

 

 

 

Orange: happy, sociable, friendly, affordable, enthusiasm

Orange is often used to draw attention and is considered a color of enthusiasm. Children’s channel Nickelodeon uses orange in their branding to give the impression of a happy, playful environment. 

 

Orange logo

Nickelodeon logo

Fanta logo

 

 

 

 

 

Yellow: logical, optimistic, forward-thinking, confidence, playful

Yellow stimulates our mental abilities and offers uplifting feelings and cheerfulness. The color is the most highly visible of all colors, which is why it can’t go unnoticed.

 

Mcdonalds Logo

DHL logo

bic

 

 

 

 

 

Pink: feminine, passion, youthful, fun, gentle, nurturing

Pink is a combination of powerful red softened with the purity of white. It’s often used to show tenderness paired with excitement.

 

LGVictorias Secret LogoBR logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple: imaginative, creative, nostalgic, royalty, spirituality

Purple stimulates imagination, bringing emotions of energy of red in combination with spirituality of blue. 

Cadbury Logo

Hallmark Logo

Yahoo logo

 

 

 

 

Green: growth, organic, natural, fresh, stability, positivity, comfort

Green is a balanced color that is easily relatable because of its natural occurrence in our environment. Whole Foods uses green in their color scheme for the connection with its products to nature and freshness.

Whole Foods Logo

Starbucks logo

Spotify Logo

 

 

 

 

 

Brown: earthy, simple, honesty, security, protection

Brown is a down-to-earth color that represents structure and stability. It elicits feelings of friendliness and loyalty. Courier service, UPS elicits user trust through it’s brown branding scheme. 

ups logo

AandW logo

mandms logo

 

 

 

 

 

Black: sophistication, luxury, seductive, formal, authority, strength

Black is most often seen used by high-end brands to portray their sophistication and luxurious products and services. News channel BBC, uses black in their logo to portray authority. 

Nike logo

 

BBC logo

Chanel Logo

 

 

 

 

White: simplicity, purity, light, innocence, goodness

Being the lightest colour, white is regarded as the most complete and pure. Apple is distinguished for its simple white branding techniques creating increased sense of sophistication yet simple-to-use products.

Apple logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Multi-color: multi-channel, positive, playful, bold, boundless, diversity

Companies with multiple colours suggests that they offer a wide choice of products and services. Google, the classic example of a multi-channel, playful company that communicates it effectively through its use of the multi-color scheme.

 

Google logo

NBC logo

Olympics logo

 

 

 

 

 

8. The Von Restorff Effect

Also known as “Isolation Effect”, this principle states that distinctive items are more likely to be remembered than ordinary items. This distinction can be a noticeably different visual, context or experience. To stand out from the rest, your designs should create a memorable experience for your users. 

Von Restorff Effect

Call attention to important design elements and concepts to make it easier for your users to process and retain what they see and do. Emphasize important details by altering light, color, size, image, font, animation, words and sounds. 

Medium Website

Medium uses a green CTA button that contrasts with the background colors to draw attention to it. (Source: www.medium.com)

But keep in mind that the Von Restorff principle must be used in moderation. Trying to make several things stand out can cause your users to become overwhelmed with all that is happening on the screen and lose focus. Remember, less is more.

9. Visceral Reactions

Ever come across a website you just don’t want to leave because of how beautiful it is?

This feeling is a visceral reaction. It’s an instinctive response to a stimulus or experience created by chemical messengers in our brain. Eliciting visceral reactions through your design will keep visitors coming back for more.

Users make a split-second decision about how they feel about a particular design as soon as they see it. If they enter a site and the layout is not immediately appealing, they may not hang around for too long. 

Acquiring a visceral reaction from your users that generates a positive behavioral reaction in them will help you gain their loyalty and support, which will in turn help develop a better image for your brand.

Simple design elements such as fonts, colors, imagery, and icons can be determining factors of the overall feel of the site. People are most comfortable with things they can relate to, so while creating a unique experience keep in mind to maintain an underlying familiarity.

Airbnb homepage

Airbnb uses intriguing imagery of destinations to elicit a positive visceral reaction associated with using their website. (Source: www.airbnb.com)

10. Dual-Coding Theory

Make it easier for your users to remember important things from your website by taking advantage of the dual-coding system. The dual-coding theory suggests that memory has two distinct but interconnected systems, one for verbal information and the other for non-verbal information. The relationship between these two channels affects memory and learning.

You create visual images for words in your mind based on your experiences and perception of the real world. Think of the word “tree” your brain automatically imagines a brown trunk and green leaves, or something along those lines. By pairing words with images, it makes them easier to recall upon mentioning them.

We see this in children’s books all the time. Not only is it for the visual appeal, but it helps children learn new words by imprinting the images associated with them.

Dual-coding

Dr. Seuss is famous for using the dual coding system in his books for children, making it easier for children to remember what they read.

Pair an article of text with a visual representation to allow readers to grasp the idea faster, engraving it into their memory. Infographics are a great example of how to make use of the dual-coding system.

Designers need to focus on the design of content itself and not just the layout to both convey messages and ease learnability creating intuitive experiences.

11. The Psychology of Shapes

“I found that I could say things with color and shapes that i couldn’t say any other way” – Georgia O’Keefe

Our subconscious mind responds to shapes by associating them to qualities that we think they are representative of.

We form these connections from universal associations that we encounter without even being consciously aware of it, such as the red octagon that is globally-known as the STOP sign. Brands use shapes along with colors to form their logos and other visual elements to trigger emotional connections with their brand.

Some commonly used shapes are:

Circles, Ovals, and Ellipses

Round shapes create a positive emotional message, perceived feminine trait and suggest community, infinity, relationships and unity.

Pepsi LogoAudi Logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Squares and Triangles

Logos that have straight edges suggest stability, strength, professionalism and efficiency. Triangles are related to power, and associations with science, religion and law. These shapes are often viewed as a masculine quality.

Microsoft Logo

Google Drive

 

 

 

 

 

Vertical Lines

Vertical lines in logos such as Cisco and SoundCloud are associated with masculinity, strength, and aggression.

Cisco LogoSoundcloud Logo

 

 

 

 

 

Horizontal Lines

Horizontal lines in logos such as AT&T and Human Rights Campaign are connected with community, equality, tranquility, and calmness.

AT&T Logo

Human Rights

 

 

 

 

 

12. The Pareto Principle, or the 80/20 Rule

The Pareto Principle, also know as the 80/20 Rule or the Law of the Vital Few, states that just 20% of the work that you have done to achieve something is responsible for 80% of the results that you’ve achieved. Simply put, you only need to fix a little in order to get a lot of positive change.

80/20 Rule

Trying to tackle and perfect all your issues at once is overwhelming and yields diminishing results. Prioritising your efforts on the small portion that could have the biggest impact will definitely help you fare better.

Analyze your design’s functioning to discover your 80/20 requirements. With fewer elements to focus on, you can maximize precision and finesse to increase conversion rates with minimal wasted efforts.

Keep in mind that although you do want to focus on the 20 percent in your design, it does not mean the remaining 80 percent is irrelevant. Where time and resources permit, fine-tune all details to create the ultimate user experience.

13. Fitts’ Law

Fitts’ Law proposes that the time taken to move to a target area is a function of the size of the target and distance to the target.

The law suggests placing target buttons closer to expected mouse locations and making them larger to decrease interaction time. This concept is important in web design because the time required to take a desired action affects conversion rates and any additional time is a risk of losing a potential customer. 

Fitts Law

(Source: www.interaction-design.org)

Increasing link size when hovering over items, as in Apple Macbook’s menu bar, is useful for increasing usability index. A common misuse of Fitts’ law is when the text of a menu bar is clickable but the tabs themselves are not, decreasing its usability index.

Fitts Law

The law can also be used for undesired actions, such as delete buttons, decreasing their target size and placing it further away from mouse position reduces the likelihood of making mistakes and frustrating the user.

Conclusion

Considering psychology in your design process helps fulfill business goals while strengthening user relations. Understanding how a design is perceived and interpreted is a crucial asset that designers must possess.

Follow usability best practices to satisfy usability principles. Enable learnability, efficiency, and memorability of your system. Take advantage of psychological principles to ethically guide user behaviour. Create seamless experiences to boost conversion rates and user satisfaction.

Any successful design will need updating from time to time, but the best part about psychology principles is they’re timeless solutions to your designs.

 

At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

The post 13 Psychology Principles All UX Designers Should Know appeared first on Saudi Arabia's 1st Web & Mobile UX, Usability & Ecommerce Research, Experience Design and Testing Consultancy.

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Usability Engineering in Saudi Arabia: E-commerce Website Souq.com http://uxbert.com/usability-engineering-saudi-arabia-e-commerce-website-souq-com/ Wed, 07 Feb 2018 10:35:50 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10944 In the first of our Usability Engineering series, we ran some quick usability tests on e-services available through the Saudi Ministry of Interior’s website. The aim was to show how even the simplest usability tests can bring to light significant usability flaws in your design. Moving away from government e-services, for our second article in […]

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In the first of our Usability Engineering series, we ran some quick usability tests on e-services available through the Saudi Ministry of Interior’s website. The aim was to show how even the simplest usability tests can bring to light significant usability flaws in your design.

Moving away from government e-services, for our second article in this series we’re looking at usability testing on e-commerce websites.

E-commerce websites (and apps) are great candidates for usability evaluation as even the smallest design changes based on insights collected from usability testing can result in a significant increase in sales.

The best example of this is the $300 million button case study by Jared Spool and UIE where a single design change to the checkout journey based on insights from usability testing resulted in an increase in purchases of 45%.

Test Subject: SOUQ.COM

For this set of usability test sessions, we asked users to browse, choose and purchase a laptop on the Saudi Souq (saudi.souq.com) website.

Souq.com is an English and Arabic language e-commerce platform which sells a range of products like consumer electronics, beauty products and household goods. It is the largest e-commerce retailer in the Middle East. Often described as the Amazon of the Arab world, it was actually recently acquired by Amazon.


A total of 3 users took part in the tests, each of whom were asked to use the site to purchase a laptop of their choice from the website.

Ideal User Journey For Task Success

The following is a list of the steps the user would ideally take to navigate to task success in the quickest, most efficient way.

Task: Purchasing a laptop

  • Step 1: Hover over the “Electronics” label on the main navigational menu on the Homepage
  • Step 2: Hover over “Computers & Laptops” in the “Electronics” dropdown
  • Step 3: Click “Laptops”
  • Step 4: Navigate to the filter widget and filter by brand, type, screen size etc.
  • Step 5: Click on the laptop of your choice
  • Step 6: Click on “ADD TO CART”
  • Step 7: Click on “PROCEED TO CHECKOUT”
  • Step 8: Select the available shipping address or add a new one
  • Step 9: Select a shipping service
  • Step 10: Select a payment method
  • Step 11: Enter your payment details
  • Step 12: Click on “PLACE ORDER”

Issues and Recommendations

The issues identified below are been listed in the order they took place as users went along their journey

1. Users Were Frustrated By The Default Viewing Mode on Product Listing Page

The product listing page had two viewing modes: a default ‘List View’ with detailed product descriptions and small images, and a ‘Grid View’ with larger product images without a detailed description

Although the user wanted to compare products using their pictures, he did not notice the option for changing the viewing mode to the grid view.

Another user discovered the grid view after browsing products for a long time and said he preferred this view because he could go through all the products faster.

Proposal:

Customers hardly read everything on the page, especially when there is a lot of content. Studies report that about eighty percent of users scan any new page and only sixteen percent read each word.  We found the same pattern in our testing sessions too. Customers in the list view did not initially pay attention to the lengthy product description. Their gaze alternated from the product price to the product image. Only if they were interested in the product did their gaze shift to the product description.

However, since the users we tested with weren’t actually planning on buying the laptop, their behaviour isn’t 100% representative. A user who’s actually in a ‘buying state’ may be more interested in product details (the text) than someone who’s just ‘browsing’.

So although the users in this research preferred grid view, further research would be required for a conclusive solution. Many case studies tout one layout over the other, but they aren’t necessarily a definitive source of evidence that there is no one right answer.

List view provides users a format that follows their natural reading patterns like the F-shaped pattern, while grid view is a little more interruptive, making it best suited for visual content. It all depends on the type of content on your website and the audience you’re catering to.

In the end, the decision to use list view versus grid view should be aligned with how your users behave. In this study, since participants preferred the easily scannable grid view, making it the default view would be a potential solution. However, more rigorous usability engineering research is required to ensure the fidelity of this solution.

2. No Filter by Year

Users wanted to filter products based on the year they were released but the Filter widget did not offer any such option. The only way they could determine the year was through the product description.

Proposal:

Add an option for product release year in the Filter widget. People will do the least amount of work possible to get a task done. To minimize workload, users must always be provided with good ways to reduce available options as efficiently as possible. The system should do as many things as possible, so that users can concentrate on performing tasks that actually require human processing and input.

3. Items In Saudi Website Cannot Be Shipped To Riyadh

The homepage of the website enables users to select their shipping location. Although the users selected “Ship to Saudi”, many items on the product listing page couldn’t be shipped to Riyadh. This frustrated the user and he considered leaving the website.

Shipping detail issues are common nuisances in Saudi ecommerce websites. In our more formal usability research, we found that e-commerce websites often do not provide sufficient shipping information until the last stages of the checkout process. When users realize that the item doesn’t ship to their location after completing the whole checkout process, they get frustrated and consider leaving the website completely. In fact, 88% of online consumers are less likely to ever return to a site after having a single bad experience.

Proposal:

One possible solution to this issue is to have a single, consistent website instead of separate ones for each shipping locations. Users should be allowed to filter the products based on the country it ships to on the product listing page. If the user does end up clicking on a product that does not ship to their location, a clear message should be provided in the product description well in advance.

Amazon Filter Options

Amazon allows users to filter products based on shipping location.

4. ‘Check Where It Ships’ Dropdown Menu Listed ‘Riyadh’ For Items That Don’t Ship to Riyadh.

When the user encounters an item which does not ship to Riyadh, the website provides a link for them to ‘Check Where It Ships’. On clicking it, a dropdown with the label “Show estimated delivery time to” appears. The dropdown has an option for Riyadh despite the fact that the description states that the product doesn’t deliver to Riyadh. The user selected ‘Riyadh’ assuming it would show him estimated delivery date for Riyadh, but the dropdown disappeared without any feedback.

Proposal:

To avoid confusing the users and increasing their cognitive load, you should simplify dropdown menus by removing all unnecessary inputs. Do not include the user’s current location in the ‘Check Where It Ships” dropdown menu and remove the estimated time label from the dropdown menu. Show the estimated time only if the user makes a selection.

5. Checkout Process Issues

One of the users encountered several issues during the checkout process. The issues are listed below as they took place in order of the user journey.

  • Cluttered Notification Message on The Shopping Cart Page

After he selected a laptop, the user logged into his account and was directed to his cart which contained items he had previously added. A cluttered notification message appeared on the top of the page with a list of changes in prices and availability for each item. The message also stated that unavailable items had been moved to the “Save for Later” list. The user only glanced  at the message before closing it, assuming that it was something unimportant.

Proposal

Users who scan generally read headings, but do not read full text prose– this results in users missing critical information when a page contains dense text. The list in the notification message should be organized in a way that makes it easier for users to scan and understand. Clutter leads to a degradation of performance when trying to find certain information.

The use of meaningful labels, effective background colors, borders, and white space can reduce visual clutter.

  • Untitled List in Shipping Page

In the shipping page, there was a list of items on the bottom of the page without a title and no indication about what the list was for.

Proposal

Clearly indicate what the list is for with a descriptive heading. Providing a descriptive heading allows users to readily understand the reason for having a list of items, and how the items relate to each other. The heading helps to inform users how items are categorized, or any prevailing principle or theme. Users are able to use lists better when they include headings.

  • Dead End in Shipping Page

In the shipping page, there was no “Next” or “Continue” button for the user to proceed. The user assumed it was because there was a problem with the address so he tried to change his address but it didn’t work. Then he assumed that the dead end was because there were some unavailable items in his cart. So he began deleting items one by one. 

Proposal:

Make sure all your pages within the checkout process have “Continue” and “Back” buttons. Don’t lead your users to dead ends. It is essential to provide the user with good navigational options. Dead ends create confusion and lead to additional and unnecessary clicks.

  • Browser Refreshes Each Time User Deletes An Item

Every time he tried to delete an item from the shipping page, the page refreshed and took a long time to load. He wondered why there was no “Delete All’ button. To quicken the process, he opened his cart in a separate tab and started deleting items from there as well.

Proposal:

Don’t refresh the page every time the user deletes something. Instead let the user make all the selections and then click a ‘Filter’ or ‘Done’ button so the page will only be refreshed after the user has finished making all selections.

As a rule of thumb, if the result of the action will bring the user back to the same page, then eliminating refresh is a good idea. For example, instead of re-displaying the same account page after the user entered an incorrect password, giving feedback on the password immediately after entry can make for a nicer experience.

  • User Was Not Sure Which Page He Was On

When he went back to the Cart page after deleting items, he was confused about which page he was on. There were lists for ‘Save For Later’ and ‘Cart’ and he said he wasn’t sure which page it was. The laptop he deleted from the cart earlier was in the ‘Save for Later’ list and that confused him even further.

Proposal:

Provide feedback to let users know where they are in the Web site. Feedback provides users with the information they need to understand where they are within the Web site, and for proceeding to the next activity.

Examples of feedback include providing path and hierarchy information (i.e., ’breadcrumbs’), matching link text to the destination page’s heading, and creating URLs that relate to the user’s location on the site.

Additionally, each web page should have a descriptive heading. Spending time during the design process to ensure that the site contains many carefully written headings and subheadings will allow users to rapidly understand which page they are on.

 

Points of Note

  • Users preferred grid view rather than list view. Most users do not read a lot of text and prefer choosing products based on images.
  • Most users faced difficulties due to the shipping details – items that could not be shipped to Saudi were included in the product listing which frustrated users.
  • The checkout process on the Arabic UI had several issues with structure, organization, labeling and feedback.
  • More rigorous usability engineering is required to ensure the fidelity of the solutions offered in this article.

 

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At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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Why UX is Not UI http://uxbert.com/why-ux-not-ui/ Wed, 27 Sep 2017 14:31:15 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10110 User Experience (UX) Design and User Interface (UI) Design are some of the most misused terms in our industry. Job advertisements often write “UI/UX’ as if they’re interchangeable. But what is the difference between UX and UI? What exactly is meant by ‘good UX’ or ‘poor UI’? In this article we'll take a deeper look at what each of the terms mean.

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User Experience (UX) Design and User Interface (UI) Design are some of the most misused terms in our industry.

Job advertisements often write “UI/UX’ as if they’re interchangeable. As UX guru, Don Norman said, “they just sort of entered the vocabulary and no longer have any special meaning. People use them often without having any idea why, what the word means, its origin, history, or what it’s about.”

So, what is the difference between UX and UI? What exactly is meant by ‘good UX’ or ‘poor UI’?

There’s a lot of confusion surrounding these two terms. Let’s first take a deeper look at what each of them means.

Defining UX and UI Design

User Experience or UX is the term used to encompass the entirety of how a person feels when interacting with a system or product. While the system or product doesn’t necessarily have to be digital, in most modern contexts it generally refers to any product that has a form of human-computer interaction (HCI).

The process of User Experience Design (UXD) relates to how UX designers evaluate how a person feels when interfacing with a system and the methods and processes they follow to increase efficiency, satisfaction, utility and a range of other quality attributes.

UXBERT_UX_Process_v2

The UX design process is a multifaceted one involving many steps ranging from user research and prototyping to development and usability testing. In short, designing UX relates to designing the entire experience.

Apart from research and design, a UX designer can also be involved in areas like marketing, communications and support to ensure that the experience is cohesive from start to finish.

UX design applies to the design of any medium – a product, a website, an app or an event. It draws from many disciplines like cognitive science, anthropology, psychology, computer science and graphic design.

User Interface Design (UID) on the other hand is concerned purely with how the product looks and feels. The user interface (UI) is the visual and technical elements of an interface, like the controls, the buttons etc that allow the user to interact with the product.

To make things simpler, let’s consider UI in the context of a restaurant. The UI of a restaurant would be the visual theme around it – What color is the wallpaper? How are the chairs and tables aligned? How bright or dim is the lighting?

In the online world, a UI designer is responsible for creating typography, icons and other interactive elements that solve direct interaction problems for the user.

UI elements on the Facebook homepage

UI elements on the Facebook homepage

The Difference between UX and UI

For a lot of people, the line between UX and UI is blurry.

To put it simply, UI is what faces the user when they look at the product whereas the UX covers the entirety of the user’s dealings with the product. UI is generally about visual and information design around the interface. UX is about the complete experience, and it may not even be about an interface. To deliver an exceptional overall experience, they must go hand in hand.

To understand things easily, think of a rollercoaster in an amusement park. UX is the anticipation leading up to the ride. It is the feeling of excitement and thrill during the ride. It is the feeling of wanting to try it again.

User Interface, or UI, is the way the ride is built. The construction material (nuts, bolts, concrete, steel), the quality of the ride (how sturdy is it?) and the placement of loops and turns.

Although the UI doesn’t constitute the entirety of the experience of sitting in a ride, it is a very important part of it.

But keep in mind that great UI does not mean great UX. And bad UI does not mean bad UX.

Some sites are designed to look pretty, but they can be frustrating to use because of slow loading times, frequent crashes or unconventional navigation.

On the other hand, some sites have very poor text-based UI, but they have excellent UX because they do exactly what the users expect them to do.

Websites like Craigslist and eBay are examples of websites which have very simple text interface without fancy buttons. But they still have millions of users per day. Users like it because they can get things done easily and quickly.

Craigslist-Step-2

Craigslist homepage

There are numerous factors that influence UX. Content, IA and interaction design are just three of the many aspects, aside from UI design, needed when creating a great user experience for your users. Each factor contains its own set of processes and requires a sense of empathy for the user.

While visual aesthetics and the user interface design are essential in UX, it’s important to remember that the user experience encompasses all aspects of your end-user’s interaction with your site or product.

Let’s Work Together!
Got a project or an inquiry? Fill the form below and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. 
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At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

The post Why UX is Not UI appeared first on Saudi Arabia's 1st Web & Mobile UX, Usability & Ecommerce Research, Experience Design and Testing Consultancy.

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Usability Engineering in Saudi Arabia: Ministry of Interior E-services http://uxbert.com/usability-engineering-saudi-arabia-ministry-of-interior/ Wed, 09 Aug 2017 14:54:15 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10768 Usability testing shows you exactly where (and why) your customers have problems using your product. Companies that invest in usability testing see direct return on investment (ROI) through increased sales and revenue, lower development cost and time, lower support costs, increased productivity and user satisfaction.

In this series, we'll be conducting so called "proto-research sessions" to demonstrate the kinds of insights that can be collected from even informal research.

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You are not your user.

Designing usable software, websites or mobile applications requires that you test designs with actual users.

At UXBERT Labs, UX Research is a key part of our process. Whether it’s a brand new design, or a revamp of an existing one, interviewing users and running usability testing is essential. Starting projects with research means we’re designing based on actual data rather than assumptions.

Usability testing shows you exactly where (and why) your customers have problems using your product. Companies that invest in usability testing see direct return on investment (ROI) through increased sales and revenue, lower development cost and time, lower support costs, increased productivity and user satisfaction

In this series, we’ll be conducting informal research sessions to demonstrate the kinds of insights that can be collected from even the smallest amount of research.

Usability testing shows you exactly where (and why) your customers have problems using your product.

Websites tested will include governmental services, e-commerce sites, business services and more.

Our aim is to show that regardless of whether a site’s purpose is informational or transactional, testing with real users provides valuable insights, immediately. And when these insights are fed back into the design process, it results in positive user experiences.

Similar to when we do formal usability engineering research, analysis of issues identified and suggested solutions are drawn from a combination of scientific research-based usability guidelines and an understanding of best practices based on expert research experience.

Eye-tracking technology is also used to support analysis of issues that revolve around layout, navigation and interaction.

Test Subject: Saudi Ministry of Interior Website

For our first set of sessions, we asked users to complete 2 simple tasks on the Saudi Ministry of Interior (moi.gov.sa) website.

The Ministry of Interior website offers Saudi residents several e-services such as iqama renewal, driving license renewals, traffic violation enquiries and health insurance. It allows people to conveniently access these government services while aiming to minimise frustrations associated with the bureaucratic process.

A total of 3 users took part in the tests, each of whom were asked to use the site to perform the following tasks:

• Check for any unpaid traffic violations

• Check to see if their fingerprint scan had been successfully registered and updated in the system

Ideal User Journey For Task Success

The following is a list of the steps the user should ideally take to navigate to task success in the quickest, most efficient way.

Task 1: Checking For Unpaid Violations

  • Step 1: Hover over “Electronic Inquiries” label in the global navigation menu on the Homepage
  • Step 2: Hover over “Traffic” in the “Electronic Inquiries” drop down
  • Step 3: Click on “Public Query Traffic Violation”
  • Step 4: Enter personal details and Image Code
  • Step 5: Click ‘View’

 

Task 2: Checking If Fingerprint Is Updated

  • Step 1Hover over “Electronic Inquiries” label in the global navigation menu on the Homepage
  • Step 2Hover over “Passports” in the “Electronic Inquiries” drop down
  • Step 3: Click on Public Query FingerPrint Enrollment
  • Step 4: Enter your ID Number and Image Code
  • Step 5: Click ‘View’

 

Issues and Recommendations

Reporting of identified issues begins with a single usability fault that was identified across both tasks.

It’s followed by issues listed in the order with which they occurred as users went through the journey.

Common Issue: Missed Label “Electronic Inquiries” On the Main Navigational Menu

When asked to check for their traffic violations or fingerprint status, almost all users went straight to the E-services label.

Users typically get an idea of the menu contents from tab labels. However, in this instance, users clicked through each category and reviewed items in the submenus one by one to figure out where they could find the traffic violations and fingerprint options.

When users compared the ‘E-Services’ and ‘Electronic Inquiries’ menu options, they couldn’t understand the difference between the submenus for each category because there was a lot of redundancy in the available options.

This issue points to potential issues with the website’s labeling and information architecture. Bad information architecture causes the majority of outright user failures (Nielsen, 2004).

 

Proposal:

Potential solution for this type of issue are twofold:

Make menu labels more descriptive

Tab labels should be clearly descriptive of their function or destination. Tabs should be descriptive enough to allow users to know what it contains and to minimize selection errors. When tab labels cannot be made clear because of the lack of space, include descriptive tips when the user hovers over a specific menu.

Redesign the website’s information architecture

Serious issues with the website’s site map and navigation need more than just descriptive labels. Designers need to present information in a structure that reflects user needs and the site’s goals.

Good information architecture enables users to understand the nature of the site’s organizational relationships, supports them in locating information efficiently and reduces the chances of users boredom or frustration.

Improving the structure of the website so that it is more intuitive for users can be done with the help of organizing techniques like card sorting.

Card sorting can help you figure out the optimal menu structure by telling you where people would want to find something. It’s a reliable method for finding patterns in how and where users would expect to find content or functionality. It can also help you figure about appropriate nomenclature for your menu labels.

Task 1

Issue 1: Arabic Error Message in English UI

When the user logged into his account to check the unpaid traffic violations, he got an error message after entering his personal details. The error message was in Arabic so the user couldn’t understand what went wrong.

 

Proposal:

It’s necessary to ensure consistency of elements through the website. Language inconsistencies not only confuse your users, they also reduce their trust in your brand, degrade website credibility and convey an overall lack of attention to detail.

Research suggests that the number of errors made using visually inconsistent displays is reliably higher than when using visually consistent displays. Tasks performed on more consistent interfaces have reduced task completion times, fewer errors, more user satisfaction and reduced learning time.

Issue 2: Inconsistent UI When Users are Logged In

There is an inconsistency between the interfaces when users are logged in and when they are not. When users are logged in, the ‘Public Query for Traffic Violations’ option is available under both E-services and Electronic Inquiries. If the user isn’t logged in, it’s not available under E-services.

 

Proposal:

Information across the website should be organized consistently to allow users to perform tasks in the same sequence and manner across similar conditions.

Consistency is acknowledged as an essential design principle and should be applied throughout the content and interactions within the website.

Task 2

Issue 1: Fingerprint Status Message at the Top Was Not Noticeable

When the user clicked ‘View’ after entering his personal details, he did not notice the fingerprint status message at the top. Because of this, he entered the ‘Image Code’ for verification twice because he thought the page refreshed. The user had change blindness, a phenomenon where users do not always notice the changes that occur on the screen. This change blindness affects critical information and leads to user confusion and task failure.

 

Proposal:

Users can easily overlook changes in state because the visual presentation blends in with the rest of the page. Slow feedback, long load times, and extraneous things competing for your user’s attention can all make them blind to seemingly obvious changes on the page.

One way to deal with change blindness is to minimize visual interruptions by avoiding page reloads where possible. When page reloads are necessary, keep attention focused on the action button location while the page loads, then display any state changes in the same general area. The ideal solution is to transform the button into a progress indicator.

Another technique to deal with this issue is to strategically place important new visual elements close to the point where the user’s’ eyes are already focused. Participants in change blindness studies are better at detecting changes in the center of the visual field, where most of their attention is focused.

Using appropriate visual emphasis such as contrast, size, and padding can ensure that important elements are noticeable.

Issue 2: Users Thought The “Passport” Label Was Unclear

The user did not expect to find the fingerprint query under “Passports”. It wasn’t immediately obvious to him that he could check his fingerprint status from ‘Passports’. He expected to find it under the ‘Expats’ category. He mentioned that the Arabic word “Al Jawazat” made more sense than the English label “Passports”.

 

Proposal:

This kind of issue arises when you rely on direct translation from Arabic to English content or vice versa. When creating your website copy, you’ll need to make an effort to think about what exactly it is you want to communicate and how best to do it by taking into account the context of the users.

A key component of a website’s information architecture is an effective nomenclature or labeling system.

A number of IA tools can be used to determine effective nomenclature and organization for the website including but not limited to card sorting and content inventories.

Points of Note

  • Most of the website’s issues revolved around issues with site information architecture.
  • Several labels were unclear to users because of which users struggled to find information.
  • The website had language inconsistencies (Arabic Error Message in English UI) and inconsistencies between the interfaces when the users were logged in and when they were not.
  • Because of potential issues with the website’s information architecture, there is a need for card sorting usability engineering to redesign it.

 

Let’s Work Together!
Got a project or an inquiry? Fill the form below and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. 

 

Fields marked with an * are required

 

At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team CX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we’ll help you create customer experiences that make your business stand out and keep your customers coming back. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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July Meetup Recap: Emotional Design http://uxbert.com/july-meetup-recap-emotional-design/ Mon, 31 Jul 2017 14:27:26 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10736 Our all-female July meetup was an exciting evening with local and international developers, designers and students joining. In this recap article we do a quick run down of how the evening went.

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Our all-female July meetup was another exciting evening full of stimulating discussions!

Attendees included both local and international developers, designers and students who were curious about emotional design and it’s importance in creating great user experiences. They all looked forward to the opportunity to connect with people with a similar passion for UX.

Our very own UX superstar Linah Aburahmah was the speaker for the event. She kicked off the meetup by asking people to introduce themselves while helping themselves to the snacks and drinks provided. This sparked off a discussion about everyone’s respective backgrounds and what attracted them to this event. By the end of the ice-breaker, there was a relaxed and intimate atmosphere around the room.

The presentation began with an entertaining example of a company who successfully incorporated emotionally intelligent design in their website. Linah showed the audience some quotes outlining the company’s design philosophy and asked them to guess which company it was. The audience gave answers like ‘Google’ or ‘Apple’ but were surprised that the answer was actually Mint.com.

With people’s attention was engaged by an entertaining introduction, Linah dove into the key concepts and principles of usability and user experience. The crowd kept the discussion going with their own hilarious personal experiences on websites with poor usability.

After a quick run-down of the basics of UX, Linah went on to explain how beautiful products induce positive emotions and these emotions directly impact the product’s usability! She used several studies and examples from real-world websites to demonstrate this to the audience.

The fact that aesthetics and usability were related was a new concept for many audience members. The rest of the presentation was aimed at helping the audience understand the different theories of emotional design and how to implement them in design.

IMG_6615

While talking about the theories of emotional design, the audience had a discussion about how a product’s brand identity can help a person develop an emotional connection to it. They cited the iPhone as an example and said that most people buy Apple products because the brand has a ‘hip’ or ‘cool’ vibe. Our cognitive scientist and comedienne in-residence, Nadeen Alloush, gave her own example; saying, “This is why I always buy water that says “Canadian Water” on the bottle. I know it’s just plain water but I can’t help it! I’m Canadian! When I see it, I just need to have it!”  

The most exciting part of the meetup was the Twitter challenge at the end of the presentation. Audience members were asked to explain their attachment to Snapchat using emotional design concepts. They were given 10 minutes to tweet @uxbert their answers to the question.

Although we had awesome answers from everyone in the crowd, Sara (@Sarasization) had the most innovative and original idea and was awarded the first prize. She described the cultural reasons behind why Snapchat was especially popular in Saudi Arabia. The prize gift was the book called “Emotional Design” by Don Norman.

The crowd was very pleased with the entire experience and all of them were willing to return for future meetups. The ladies stated that the UXBERT Labs office had a really cool interior and requested a tour before leaving. By the end of the meetup we had all gone from strangers with similar interests to friends exchanging our personal experiences together.

We’re always proud to bring together the UX community and share our expertise together and learn from each other. Make sure you don’t miss out on future meetups by joining our User Experience & Design group on meetup.com or signing up to our blog email newsletter.

We’re looking forward to seeing more and more UX enthusiasts in our upcoming meetups!

For any questions, comments or suggestions feel free to email us at [hello@uxbert.com]

Subscribe to our newsletter
Sign up for all the latest UX, Usability & Ecommerce news and tips!

At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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6 UX Best Practices for Bank Digital Services http://uxbert.com/6-ux-best-practices-for-bank-digital-services/ Thu, 27 Jul 2017 13:48:56 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10701 A list of 6 UX guidelines that banks should implement when designing their online experiences in order to deliver optimal customer experiences.

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While customers are getting used to seamless, cross-functional user experiences from the likes of Google or Apple, retail banks have been struggling to keep up.

The pressure is on for banks to design an improved customer experience, or lose out to existing competitors and new fintech startups that match growing expectations.

So what do customers want from digital banking, and how can banks best organize themselves to meet customer expectations?

We’ve put together a list of 6 guidelines that banks should implement when designing their online experiences in order to deliver optimal customer experiences.

1. Optimize Your Site to Improve Speed

Research from the design and technology company Beyond suggests that 53% of bank customers want faster ways to transact online.

There are many ways banks can do this. For starters banks should avoid asking for extra input data and instead focus on just information that is vital for the processes. Additionally, UI’s and user journeys should only include necessary elements in order to create faster and to-the-point payment processes. Customers should be able to complete their transactions in as few clicks as possible.

2. Design to Increase Security

Studies show that 55% of users are concerned with ID theft and as many as 71% of customers want additional levels of security.

To maximize security, banks should use multiple security solutions like gesture patterns and biometrics in addition to more traditional authentication via passcodes. Biometrics are particularly useful because they are difficult to fool, not to mention a lot better compared to digital passcodes. They provide instant access to the service with an acceptable level of security. This solves the design problem of increasing security without compromising on speed or ease of use.

MobileBanking-1

You can provide a quick entry to the account through biometrics but for certain functions like changing security settings or for the transfer of large sums, additional passcode authorization should be required.

Where designing digital passcodes is necessary, the following practices should be kept in mind:

  • Add an auto lockdown function if there are many failed attempts.
  • Font size should be large when creating the passcodes to make it easy to read.
  • Keep the passcode hidden as they are being entered.
  • Allow for time-out option that triggers for passcode entry after inactivity of about 1 to 5 minutes.
  • Don’t accept obvious passcodes like 1111, 1234.

3. Personalize Your Customer’s Experience

Almost every business is realising the importance of personalizing the customer experience. Personalisation is especially important for banks, whose customers need to trust the brand and not feel like just another account number.

Banks can achieve this by creating unique experiences for customers based on past user data. This involves collecting data about customers, such as their behaviors and preferences, in order to create and present content in a way that best works for them. If your data suggests that a customer has just started a family, you could send them information to help with financial planning for the future.

Customers increasingly want personalized online tools. Some 50% of customers believe that banks should provide tools and services to help customers save money and make financial decisions based on their data. Most customers (73%) from this group also felt that these tools would significantly increase their loyalty to the brand.

By providing personalized digital advice, banks will be integrated into the center of their customers’ financial lives.

4. Design to Build Trust

Transparency

Just like in real life, being honest and upfront with all relevant information is necessary for building trust on the web.

People appreciate when sites are transparent with information that relates to the customer experience. This is especially important for banks where customers have higher security demands. You should always clearly include details like contact information or any additional fees or charges accompanying a service. The trick is not to hide this information behind layers of information but rather make it available to the user at the point of the user journey that they’ll need it.

Aesthetic and Minimalistic Design

Banks should make sure that their websites have an updated look and feel with a modern, clean style that reflects the financial institution’s brand. This will help instil confidence and trust in the experience and, in turn, the financial institution.

090214_CO-ASP-New-UI_Caption_SO

Accurate and Detailed Information

Make sure to add detailed and accurate information related to the website. This shows that the organization is well informed, up-to-date and committed to helping its customers.

Avoid using flashy banners and popups because they seem untrustworthy and spammy. Use a style of writing that is clear, direct and sincere.

5. Strive for Ease of Use

As many as 50% of bank customers want easier ways to log in to their account. Financial institutions should simplify the online banking experience in terms of page layout, navigation, task flows, and content display.

The most frequently used tasks should be clearly accessible. Simple navigation leads to ease of use throughout the experience, as well as increased efficiency and confidence for the end user.

6. Create a seamless, cross-functional customer experience across all channels

There is a lot of room for improvement in the creation of experiences that are better integrated across channels. Many customers who use both branch and digital say the channels are not well integrated at most banks.

In addition, a growing number of consumers are banking from smartphones and tablets, yet online banking remains foundational to the digital banking experience. An ideal online banking experience will resonate across digital channels with consistent information and design elements.

Conclusion

Banks face a major challenge when looking to redesign their digital offerings. The speed at which customer expectations are changing is faster than ever. To stay relevant in today’s marketplace, they must be able to respond more quickly to changing customer needs. There is no silver bullet solution for banks, but implementing these six design tips will be help banks improve their online experience.

Subscribe to our newsletter
Sign up for all the latest UX, Usability & Ecommerce news and tips!

At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team of UX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we deliver custom designed and built software that will help your businesses succeed, whatever the industry. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, get in touch at hello@uxbert.com

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How To Choose the Best Software Development Company In Saudi Arabia http://uxbert.com/saudi-businesses-software-development/ Tue, 25 Jul 2017 13:59:41 +0000 http://uxbert.com/?p=10598 Saudi businesses are investing heavily in technology. With a growing software development market in the Kingdom, choosing a company that is a perfect fit in terms of ability, experience, and budgeting is a difficult choice to make. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve (an experienced software development company ourselves) listed the most important things to look out for when choosing the best software development company in Saudi Arabia for your projects - big or small.

The post How To Choose the Best Software Development Company In Saudi Arabia appeared first on Saudi Arabia's 1st Web & Mobile UX, Usability & Ecommerce Research, Experience Design and Testing Consultancy.

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Saudi businesses are investing heavily in technology.

Whether to improve customer experience, user experience, employee experience, digitize their companies or just to get their brand online with a simple website, businesses of all sizes in Saudi Arabia, local are turning to software development companies to realize their goals.

With a growing software development market in the Kingdom, choosing a company that is a perfect fit in terms of ability, experience, and budgeting can be a difficult choice to make.

To help you make an informed decision, we’ve (an experienced software development company ourselves) listed some of the most important things to look out for when choosing the best software development company in Saudi Arabia for your projects – big or small.

Experience and Product Quality

As we always say, The Experience Matters.

When selecting a company to carry out your project, always make sure to check up on the projects they’ve worked on and who they’ve worked with.

Knowing which clients the company has worked with can give you a rough picture of the calibre and capabilities of the company. Software development companies, like UXBERT Labs, that have worked with tech giants (like Microsoft, Google, Apple etc.) are amongst the best in the region and would be the ideal companies to approach for large project needs.

Experience with Clients

UXBERT’s Growing List of Clients

This doesn’t necessarily mean companies that haven’t had the opportunity to work with tech giants shouldn’t be considered.

There are plenty of good software development companies in Saudi Arabia that cater towards smaller organizations and deliver world class services. But if it’s a large scale project you’re looking for, you likely want to work with someone who’s done it all before.  

Just as important is to do a bit of research into the actual products they’ve worked on. The best indicator of a top software development company is the quality of the products they’ve built.

Check out our environmental dashboard for MODON here – Futuristic MODON Environmental Dashboard 

Creating top class products and delivering flawless services that are loved by clients is the mark of an experienced software development company. 

Technical Ability

Most software development companies feature examples of their work on their websites.

Flat Stack’s project page

Flat Stack’s project page

While they won’t reveal all of the information about the technical specs, the products can give you a fair idea of how good they really are.

Many companies will also give you a lot of information about the tools they use if you simply ask them. It’s not only of benefit to you but also gives the software development company the chance to show off their technical abilities.

Certain software development companies might have the expertise only to tackle mobile development while others could take on digitization projects that transform your business completely and enable it to succeed in this digital age.

Depending on your needs, whether it’s getting a website made or your company transformed, approach software development companies that can handle your project efficiently and without any strain. Handing a native app development project to a company that specializes in web development will leave you disappointed and with a bad app that could drive users away.

Location – Saudi Arabia

Every software development project is affected by the location. While it is true that a mobile app or a website can be made by a company that isn’t located in your region, keep in mind that that company won’t know the details about mental models of the target users if they’re local users. 

saudi business

For businesses in Saudi Arabia that target local users, hiring an offshore software development company can be a risk.

Local Saudi software development companies know the region better and more importantly know the users better.

Hiring an experienced software development company within the MENA region increases the likelihood of a successful product because they’ll tailor the software exactly according to your and your users needs.  

Read about how designing an Arabic UX differs from UX in other parts of the world – Designing An Arab User Experience

Another benefit of hiring a local software development company in Saudi Arabia is that you can be physically involved in the entire process, trying and testing your product throughout while communicating with the company in person.

With growing interest in technology in Saudi Arabia, top quality software development companies have sprung up in recent years. Some of these companies are at par with the best in the world and should definitely be considered for large scale projects such as digital transformation.

Security and Trust

One of the most important traits of a software development company is its trustworthiness.

If the system you want to develop has significant sensitive data, classified information, proprietary business information, personal information, and/or medical information, making sure this data is safe and secure is very important.

5.1_cc_to_safe

Check out our cool gifs on dribbble.com/uxbert

Not all software development companies are properly insured to work on high security or high safety systems so handing projects with sensitive data should always be done after a mutual bond of security is formed between you and the company.

While approaching a company make sure you check their previous systems and softwares for quality and efficiency.

To keep all your intellectual and sensitive data safe, make sure that you sign an NDA (Non-disclosure agreement) with the software development company before handing over your project.

Getting Your Money’s Worth

Budgeting is important.

High end software development companies charge more for their products and services as they meet the highest quality standards.

But if you’re looking at a simple website with minimal interactions, a freelance developer might be enough for your needs. Whether you go for a one-man team or a premier software development company, do your due diligence and make sure that whoever you hire has the proven experience (see above).

Not all software development companies can or will take on projects of any size. Some companies are only interested in gigantic, multi-year, multi-enterprise projects. Other companies specialize in only one kind of project, such as mobile media applications or enterprise systems integration.

You should select a software development company that helps you get your money’s worth. By this we mean that the company shouldn’t over charge you for your product. With bigger companies and bigger projects, certain services, such as site maintenance, are often free of charge. This same service could charge you more in companies that don’t have enough personnel to continually manage your product after deployment.

These are the some of the most important points to keep in mind when selecting a software development company in Saudi Arabia that fits your needs.


Watch how UXBERT Labs does its Eye Tracking Usability testing!
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Sign up for all the latest UX, Usability & Ecommerce news and tips!

If you’re a Saudi business looking for a software development company, look no further. At UXBERT Labs we specialise in using scientific UCD processes to design world-class innovative and beautiful experiences. Hosting Saudi Arabia’s first commercial and state-of-the-art Usability Lab, and a team CX Researchers, Designers and Developers on-site in our Riyadh office, we’ll help you create customer experiences that make your business stand out and keep your customers coming back. If you have a project you’d like to work with us on, drop us a mail at  hello@uxbert.com and we’ll get in touch with you ASAP.

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