APPROACH ON DISCOVERY
My approach to the research & strategy
process with clients and customers
Why should we research new features and improvements?
Building a digital strategy that is user-centered requires you to interview your potential users, find their pain points, and ideate solutions that address these issues.
From usability testing to research interviews, we will work closely with your team to develop a clear picture of what’s wrong and how we can fix it. My process for developing digital strategies or collecting research involves observing and analyzing your customers, competitors, and industry.
I uncover impressions, develop insights, and use those to help define a company’s brand voice and target audience. The data collected gives me insight into what a company already knows about its users, as well as where a deeper understanding of the needs and where it may be lacking.
As UX/CX professionals, we spend time getting to know who our users are and what they do. We get to know where they came from and what brought them to the product. Knowing all of this information helps us craft a plan/roadmap for the future. But sometimes we can get caught up in the process and get attached to our solutions. This sometimes results in us losing sight of the business goals.
Before starting, remember the T.I.D.E.S. of UX
If you are going to swim in the ocean that is discovered, empathy and experience, remember the T.I.D.E.S.
It’s a good way of staying grounded during discovery. You are never ready for the range of emotions that the user & customers demonstrate during interviews and although sympathizing is a good thing, we can’t lose sight of the goal.
Ideas are free
Simplicity is Consistency
Tailor experiences and customize content.
Hello, David, welcome back.
The simplicity and effectiveness of designing experiences that are personalized for the user are incredible. Whether it’s a custom welcome message or a small activity box that is personalized for the user could be the difference that either engages the user long enough to continue exploring.
Not having custom content could tell the user, this is the same information that everyone gets and they may even lose interest. As strategists, we should always try and meet that 1-1 threshold of custom content, meaning for every single global feature, offer one persona-based feature. Remember, offering users custom content and persona-based actions helps reduce friction and eliminates the time to action for users, thereby improving the experience.
Ideas are FREE and don’t cost anything.
I understand the need for some business-driven thinkers to want to steer clear of ideas for solutions that may be costly, have complicated requirements, or even those with doubtful feasibility.
Remember that having what some may call “extravagant ideas” or a “pie-in-the-sky” way of thinking, is a good thing. Apart from keeping users engaged, the benefit of hearing what users’ heart desire help strategists empathize on a deeper level.
It challenges us to think of what a product or solution could be, rather than what it is. Look past the duck tape solution, and even discover new features that on some occasions render the current initiative… unnecessary.
Detach and remember you are not the user.
It’s hard to maintain emotional distance from a product that you’re designing. The goal of user research is to sympathize with people using the product, so it may be tempting to get attached to better understand what it’s like for your users.
You are not the customer. You are not the user. The problems you are solving belong to them, the features you are building are for them, and the overall experience should be their primary concern.
I want my users to be happy with their experience, but I also want them to provide me with honest feedback. Loving a product makes it hard to be objective, so by keeping myself emotionally detached, I can ask questions and get honest answers-a win-win!
Include customers in as much of the process as you can.
Take it a step further… allow them to do the ideation, bring them into the creative process, and, let them solve their own problems and develop their own features. Who better than the users themselves know what causes them friction?
It’s fun to participate in user experience interviews and discussions, but imagine if you were also allowed to draw, and own your solution. I found that 10 times out of 10, users who own their solutions and designs, tend to love them more!
Apart from interviews, I also, have them whiteboard what they think would be good ideas, encourage them to participate in every step of the ideation process, and in the end, with a few tweaks, I present their solutions back to them. Ta! Da! This method guarantees user satisfaction 99% of the time.
Simplicity is Consistency
Lean on simplicity and reuse helps aim for consistency. When you are designing for a user-centered experience and creating an intuitive interface, users should be able to predict how the site will behave once they interact with it.
User experience research is a science, not an art. It’s a process that uses data, analytics, and research to meet business goals. Consistency in user experience research eliminates confusion and saves money by improving usability. It creates delight by reducing unwanted surprises.
Visual consistency and functional consistency are two key elements to a seamless user experience and are important in building trust. Visual consistency provides users with a sense of ownership, control, and understanding. It helps users recognize typical elements and journeys and feel more comfortable navigating your solution.
Functional consistencies add to the predictability of a solution and make it feel safer, more secure, and confident. Functional consistency makes it easier for users to complete a task when they know what to expect.
Check out my most recent case studies,
product designs, brands designs and strategies portfolio samples.
API Center User Experience Improvement Case Study
A six month long engagement into Discover’s API Enablement and Standardization Discovery Research. In this case study we take a look into this deep dive exploration…
AT&T national business omni mid-market CX strategy experience
The AT&T national business customer experience transformation initiative is a multi-year project examining the opportunities and challenges that…
Believer in design before code & user-driven research…
Are you planning a retro before moving forward with a product cycle? I partner with UX and design teams to validate the decisions reserved for any upcoming…