Let’s accept it, the industry is ever evolving and the best thing we, as product managers and designers, could do is adapt and innovate to sustain our business and clients. Relying on best practices and keeping them as frameworks for designing not just limits our ability to bring in new features but makes our product look old-school, underwhelming or both.
That’s why don’t fall for the myths passed as best practices. These might have worked for businesses and products a couple of years back, but today, they might not hold a significant value to the customer.
So, if you’re a product manager or a designer still going by beliefs you think are right, you need to evaluate your strategies because you might be relying on a myth long gone extinct.
Check out such UX myths that are really hurting tech company CEOs.
A Simple UX translates to a Minimalist Design
One of the major reasons why minimalist designs went viral was because of not their simplified visual elements or colour schemes but functionalities. However, there is a preconceived notion (or a myth) that simplicity equals minimalism. That’s not true!
You need to find the balance between simplistic functions and minimalism as the two are very distinct to each other. As Jason Stirman says, “Fewer buttons, switches, and options do not make something simple.” What makes your product simple is the elegance in its functionality and ease of use for an end customer. Instead of forcing minimalism into your design, simplify your design’s framework and usability and see things falling into place.
UX Design is One of the Steps in Your Project
If you think, UX design comes only after you’ve done with strategizing go-to-market ideas, target audience analysis and other so-called fundamental processes, you cannot be more wrong. See, this is a serious myth we are talking about.
The entire lifecycle of your product depends on your UX design and it is not one of the steps but the initial steps you need to work. It starts at the time you are working on your business model and evolves from your intangible idea into a tangible, usable product. It’s impractical to keep the UX design as an ancillary process that you think you can start off with in the end because it defines your business, its strategy, the knowledge on the technology of your target audience, its competition, and more.
Usability Will Compensate for the Lack of Aesthetics
Before we debunk this myth, take a moment to understand that today’s generation uses handheld devices such as tablets and smartphones for most of its everyday operations. In such a scenario, one of the first things that strike an end user is the aesthetics of your design and that lets your user decide if he or she should stay on your product or website or switch to a different one.
The one that does not have a good colour scheme, layout, symmetry, organized navigation, typeface and image lacks the credibility quotient your users are looking for on the products or services.
Attractive designs and colour schemes tend to have a psychological impact on users’ minds. They find it more relaxed to explore your website or product. First impression which hardly lasts for about 5 seconds is all it takes to get your efforts and investments judged and people would not bother overlooking your product if it doesn’t entice their visual senses no matter how amazing your product or website’s functionality is.
Lorem Ispum > Actual Content
Just like how UX should be an integral part of idea evolution, content should be part of UX evolution. Most designers tend to add filler texts while designing their websites and later share their designs with writers to do their job.
It doesn’t work that way!
Design and content go hand in hand and it is together that cast the initial first impression. While designing, it is both the writers and designers who need to sit down and brainstorm the basic and right approaches to delivering the UX to users.
Working together allows a designer to better design the skeleton of a product or website and a writer to place the most enticing and eye-catchy copy for your product. Content is the undisputed king and keeping it as a secondary process in designing is only devaluating your product and its potential reach.
You are a Representation of a User’s Persona
When designing a product or a website, if you think your target audience is like you, you are wrong. The difference between you and your end user is that you know the technicalities of your product and designs and you could navigate to any part of the webpage or product information you intend to seek.
When you put yourself in the shoes of a user and design, you might have come up with a brilliant UX for your product. But give that to a real user and chances are highly likely that the user would not have understood what your product or website is all about, how to proceed with using it, or in the worst case, what to do with what you have presented.
While you don’t have to assume your audiences are dumb, you have to realign your thought process to theirs to find the best angle to deliver the UX that would make them use your product and feel comfortable. You need to avoid this lethal bias and interact with users to understand their expectations and thoughts.
So, have you been following any or all of these myths? Well, it’s time to analyze and fix the changes. Like we said, evolution is constant and how you adapt to changing trends defines your purpose and business. The next time you work on UX, consider these myths and share more such myths that you know of.