The world of design is in a constant state of flux. Certain styles change depending on current trends and consumer preferences. However, the opposite is also true. A designer’s fresh ideas can influence people to look at and experience things in a new way. This applies to every field that requires the creative skills of a designer, from environmental and industrial industries, to communication. This article covers communication design in particular, which encompasses graphic, information, digital and web design.
There is an admitted confusion between User Interface (UI) design and User Experience (UX) design, and they can be difficult to tell apart for both laymen and business executives. Hiring such UI/UX designers can also prove challenging if there is no clear understanding of what their roles are. An employer might be expecting UX results, thinking a UI designer can produce them, and vice versa. While they are quite different, both disciplines are required to work together to create a great experience for its target audience and users. Here are three significant differences between UI and UX:
Application: General or specific
To make it easier, let us first differentiate how the disciplines are used. While the term originated from the digital realm, UX has a non-digital application, which can be found in every field of design. To demonstrate what this means, simply think about how you may feel about a certain product, such as a house, a car, or a website. What you experience when you use them is your UX. The term, however, is just more commonly used when talking about digital or graphic design.
Conversely, UI relies on or will require some degree of coding to create. Its end result should be able to provide you with a user-friendly interface. This confines it to the digital realm, where it is usually used to establish a structure or platform that allows users to experience the company’s brand.
How it relates to its audience
Connecting UI with UX is one of the main roles of a UI designer. He must be able to visually recreate the brand’s concepts to provide a consistent experience for the user. Simply put, UI is an artistic interpretation of the company’s image and feel on a digital platform.
UX design is more socially-inclined. It considers the user’s current tastes and preferences derived from market research. The purpose of UX is to know what design features could elicit positive reactions from your audience while using the company’s product or service. The designer has to be able to convey this properly to the development team that creates the digital interface.
Strategy in its creation
A UX designer must analyze market data in order to understand the company’s competitors and clientele. This information is then used to formulate the designs. As such, UX requires a working knowledge of the overall concept of the project, and this must be consistently tested during the process so that it results in the desired experience. The process of testing includes analyzing the different components of a product or service to make sure that the target audience enjoys using it.
Unlike its analytical and non-digital counterpart, UI design is very technical in its approach. It is created during the implementation stage, where the developer uses code to visually represent the company’s concepts in the digital realm. In doing so, UI must be able to enhance your experience when using the final product.
Good UX and UI is something that can truly enhance the company's brand. It encourages clients to want to use their interface because of the good experience that they derive from it. One part requires the other in order to create a complete package. I does not matter how good the UI or UX is individually. It is the totality of their design relationship that will ultimately dictate how effectively these can communicate to its users.