Custom software development is on the rise. A recent report predicts a 22% annual industry growth between now and 2030. An increasing number of companies are hiring third-party experts to streamline processes and optimize their operations.
But is software enough on its own – or is UI/UX design also becoming a necessity? We live in a digital world. Consumers, bombarded with content from all sides, are raising their standards. The average person today holds websites and apps they use to a much higher standard. According to AWS, 88% of users are unlikely to return to a website that offers a bad user experience.
In this article, we’re going to discuss supplementing your custom software development team with a UI/UX expert. We’ll talk about what exactly that is, why it’s important, and how the right designer can help your ROI.
What is UI/UX design?
UI(user interface) and UX(user experience) design refer to creating the user interface and experience of digital products – websites, applications, and software.
The two terms often go together, and you may have heard them used interchangeably. It’s not uncommon for a qualified designer to have both skill sets. And yet, there are some differences.
User Interface design refers to the visual aesthetic and layout of a product. This could include graphics, images, fonts, colour schemes etc. A UI designer aims to make your product pleasant and appealing to your users.
User Experience design, as the name suggests, refers to designing the way users interact with your product. Aspects such as ease of use, responsiveness, and intuitive navigation are all parts of UX. The goal here is to create a product that’s both functional and enjoyable to use.
A UI/UX designer combines both skill sets to create a user-friendly, visually appealing application. Let’s look at three main ways a user experience professional can directly contribute to your product’s success.
Improved customer acquisition and satisfaction
As we said earlier, a UI/UX designer’s primary goal is to make your product easy and pleasant to look at and use. It’s crucial to remember that, ultimately, its success depends on your users’ satisfaction. An aesthetically pleasing interface that’s also easy to interact with is a great way to attract new clients, keep current ones coming back, and even motivate them to recommend your product to others.
In fact, according to a recent study, better UX design boosts a website’s conversion rate by up to 200%. A great user experience involves a number of steps, including user research, testing, and iterative design. By understanding the needs of your users, a UI/UX designer can ideate and create a product that’s tailored to them, resulting in a more rewarding experience for your audience – and increased engagement for you.
When discussing UI/UX design, people tend to focus on the way clients and customers interact with the product. But there’s another, equally important point of view – the way your employees interact with the tools and systems they need to do their jobs.
The Employee User Experience (EUX) is an often overlooked aspect of business that can directly impact productivity, save the company money, and even affect internal culture.
Let’s look at an example. Imagine you need an internal module to track and sort through engineering proposals. A properly designed system that works smoothly would streamline your internal reporting and directly increase productivity. On the other hand, a clunky, complicated, unintuitive system can turn minute tasks into daily ones and discourage people from using it at all.
A cohesive, easy-to-use internal system can even bring employees together and promote collaboration. A good employee user experience enables staff to easily access the tools they need, reduces frustration, and promotes workplace positivity. Furthermore, since UX design is an iterative process that requires a lot of feedback, the very journey to achieving it facilitates teamwork and professional closeness.
When you invest in custom software development, you expect a sizable return. Many companies focus on the technical side of things – but neglecting the user experience can lead to many missed opportunities.
It’s a little-known fact that UI/UX improvements can directly affect a company’s bottom line. According to a Forrester report, every $1 invested in user experience results in a return of up $100.
It makes sense. Increased customer engagement and satisfaction is an obvious way to stand out from your competitors. But it’s more than that. Good UX can reduce costs, as well.
Users who had a positive experience are more satisfied, reducing the need for costly customer service on your part – in addition to boosting customer loyalty. Furthermore, a UX designer can reduce development costs by identifying and addressing potential issues early in the development cycle. That reduces the likelihood of bugs surfacing and saves money and time in the long run.
Custom software development comes with many benefits – but sometimes, there’s more to a successful product or service than software. In today’s digital landscape, it’s not enough for a product to be functional. Users expect more – they want software that’s intuitive, easy to use, and visually appealing.
A UI/UX designer can help a good product stand out, appeal to your users and inspire loyalty. Furthermore, a good user experience and a friendly interface can improve internal morale and boost efficiency. In a business world that’s more competitive by the day, it’s a potential investment that shouldn’t be overlooked.