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The differences between UX and UI design

The differences between UX and UI design

ecompix 829 01-Sep-2020

What is UX design? 

UX design stands for user experience design. In UX design, the experience of the end-user, the person who uses the product, is central. This can be about a website, app, or tangible product, such as a mobile phone.

A UX designer checks whether the interests of a customer are being met and proposes adjustments where necessary. One goal of a UX designer is to optimize the entire experience, from raising awareness to recommending the product to friends. This is also called the customer journey. By constantly working on the total picture, user-friendliness can be guaranteed. That is why it is important to have a UX designer participate in the entire process: from a strategic plan to the optimization of the product well after delivery.

Also Visit: ecommerce website design

UX-researcher vs. UX-designer

The boundaries of the field are not completely demarcated. The Nielson Norman Group, one of the largest UX companies in the world, recognizes two positions within UX: UX Researcher and UX Designer. A UX researcher mainly focuses on researching and interviewing users. A UX designer focuses more on translating user needs into a design.

What is UI design?

UI design stands for user interface design. It is a free translation of graphic design, but digitally. Where a UX designer designs functionally, a UI designer designs emotionally. A UI designer takes care of the complete look and feel of a product: the appearance, the presentation, the readability, the color psychology, the interaction. A UI designer designs a product from buttons to animations. The goal of a UI designer is to apply the branding, find the right balance between functional and emotional, and deliver a complete design.

For example, on the Fairtrade Netherlands website, we have placed emphasis on the green to strengthen the connection between the platform and the brand's mission. On the other hand, at Agora we focus more on the brand elements in order to bring out the playful nature of the educational form.

UI-designer vs. web designer vs. digital designer

Web designers focus purely on (responsive) web experiences. A digital designer also includes other elaborations, such as mobile apps. As a UI designer, you can call yourself a digital designer and vice versa.

UI-designer vs. product designer

Product designers are concerned with designing platforms. A platform is for example a dashboard, a management panel, or an app. Some well-known platforms are Trello, Spotify, and Notion. Product designers are UX and UI designers in one.

Want to know how a platform is built? View our case about the Visser platform.

How do UX and UI designers work together?

Suppose we are going to build a new website for the fictional company Acme. Our UX designer is the first to get started. He looks at possible competitors, user personas, the customer journey, and the statistics of the current website. He listens to Acme's goals for the website. This results in a list of functionalities, wireframes, and guidelines for a web and content strategy.

It's time to introduce our UI designer. He is eager to bring the surf to life. The wireframes are converted into designs, a perfect balance of brand identity, storytelling, and interaction. The UI designer then works closely with the developer to bring the designs to life.

What is a UX / UI designer?

If you've come this far, it should be clear to you: UX and UI are two specialties. So why are so many companies advertising vacancies for UX / UI designers?

UX and UI designers are mainly active in the design and tech world. You will not easily encounter these functions outside of this. Therefore, business leaders, HR staff, and recruiters may not know the difference; they think this work is done by one person. But there is not always a misunderstanding here. Some companies are simply looking for a designer who can take on both roles.

Why two functions for one job?

Do you know someone who has mastered every aspect of their field? We certainly don't. Every designer excels (un) consciously in a certain aspect of his field. Of course, you can use a UX / UI designer for a project, but with the combination of a UX and UI designer, you have the best of both worlds. By constantly sharing and shooting your progress, you keep each other on your toes and deliver a better product than working on your own.

What we have learned ?

There is a clear difference between UX and UI designers. Although one person can perform both roles, there is a good chance that there will be stuck somewhere. When two people each take on a role, you have a better chance that the project will be a success.

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