The terms UX and UI are around for quite a long time, but people often confuse regarding UX and UI. These two terms are extensively used for web and app designing, and UX and UI complement each other. Often these two are placed as a single term as UX/UI design and it appears that both things are the same. However, in reality, these two are distinctly different, and in fact, the ui design should be considered as a part of UX design.
Here in this article, you will find an easy explanation for UX design and UI design. Once you complete reading the article, you will have a fair understanding of the differences between the two.
What does UX design mean?
‘User Experience‘ design can be thought of as the interaction of a person with the applications, products, or operating systems. To have ux design explained, it will mean defining in which way a product operates and how can it meet the need of the users. A User Experience design should be clear, user-friendly and comfortable and it is so elaborate and deliberate that you even don’ t notice it while using a website.
Whether a User Experience is good or bad can be gauged by the overall experience of a user with the products or the services of a company. How easy it is or how difficult it is to have interaction with each aspect or element of a service or product can be a good indicator of user experience. For example, whether the position or the colors of buttons encourage clicking or making people hesitate. Whether the content of the page is increasing the conversions, etc are often the questions asked by a UX Design engineer.
UX designer tries to understand the pain-points of the customers, carries the analysis of the competitors and understands the potential market gap. UX also considers the business goals and the objectives besides focusing on the understanding of the users and the need for fulfillment of the gap of market needs. This approach is adopted for building products that can align with the vision and mission of a company. The perception and interaction of the users can be improved by the best UX designs that can fall in line with the desire of the company.
What does UI design mean?
‘User Interface‘ design is mainly focused on the look and layout and is concerned about how each product will look. It includes the buttons, text, placeholders, checkboxes, images, and other visual interfaces, that people interact with. While the UX design deals with the working of the interface, and interaction of people with it, UI design helps in creating a proper look and feel. UI design focuses on the aesthetic aspects of a product like button styles, color palettes, graphics, animation, diagrams, typography, etc.
The User interface design also makes use of many other elements to make the applications, websites, themes, plugins, etc, look clean and neat while providing intuitive functions to users. A UX designer conducts market research and analyzes the findings to get educated about the need and desires of the customers for designing the product functionalities. On the other hand, a UI designer keeps updated on evolving graphic patterns and designs trends that change with the change of customer’s behavior and taste.
We have entered a multi-screen era and now the use of mobile devices is prevalent among the users who love to access the websites while on the go. It is, for this reason, the responsive designs meant for seamless mobile ui design has become an integral part of the UI design. Responsive designs make it possible for the viewers to access and view the websites on any type of device, whether it is a desktop, or laptop or a mobile device. The UI designers can optimize the interfaces so that it can provide pleasant navigation across different devices and the products can be looked appealing across any device. There is no need to create a different website for the different devices as responsive designs can bring the solution. Only one version of a website can be created by the UI designers that can scale elements and contents to match any type of screen size.
What is the key difference between User Experience and User Interface design?
The User Experience and User Interface are both extremely important to make a product or to break a product. They can work closely to decide how a product should look appealing and how it should function to give customer satisfaction. However, there are a few underlying difference between the working of the two disciplines and these are discussed as follows:
UX looks for providing solutions whereas UI decides the look:
User Experience design is primarily concerned with the expectation of the users for the products or services. UX is focused on locating and solving the problems with which the customers are facing problems. With a clever UX design, it is possible to earn the trust and confidence of the customers in certain uncertain and risky ventures like investing, easily. While looking to solve customer problems, UX design also takes into account the business goals and objectives.
On the other hand, User Interface design is primarily responsible for materializing the UX designer’s efforts behind the scene. It creates the interface of the products based on the functional requirements and further, it applies the standards, theories, and aesthetics to produce an excellent appearance on the screen.
UX focuses on the journey of the users; UI produces the snapshots of products:
Audience remains the backbone of a UX design and UX researches are mostly on experimentation and testing of the work to learn and to improve the user experience. Functional interactions, behavior and the emotional reactions, of the users throughout their journey, become the core of UX strategy. Why customers are shying away from a feature or why the customers are not clicking the CTA buttons, etc are some questions that UX designers dig into to decide for UX strategy.
UI designers, on the other hand, focus on the layout to make the customers delighted and to entice the customers to make buying decisions quickly. A User Interface designer combines the graphic, motion, interaction, and design for branding to produce the best layout. It is the job of UI designers to turn the layout and the conceptual content in an intuitive, attractive and responsive interface for the users. Whether to add a three-dimensional illustration to add depth and to sharpen the contrast or whether to use more aesthetics in the design are some considerations taken by the UI designers to make a brilliant interface design.
UX designer and UI designer have different types of roles:
Nature of User Interface and the User interface is different and the designers working in each profession has to different types of work.
The work of UX designer:
The structure of a product, functionality of the product and the flow of the product are created by UX designers. The UX designers need to work with business analysts, marketers, and the product team, very closely to understand the user needs. After identifying the target audience and understanding the goal, the UX designer needs to analyze the market data, and compare the benchmarks.
UX Designers need to conduct user testing and also analyze the competitors to create suitable solutions that can enhance the UX at all touch points. Once the research and analysis are complete,the UX designers start sketching the wireframes to give an illustration of different elements, user interactions, and content. Prototypes are created from the wireframes by further adding the functional information architecture, and these prototypes are handed over to the UI designers.
The work of UI designer:
UI designer before starting the work will discuss the job with the UI designer to decide the structure of the project and how it will look. UI designers create high-fidelity layouts by following the style guide, visual identity, and UI kits. The layouts are prepared with responsive designs and it defines the animations as well as transitions.
The designers create a comprehensive reference and style guide to help the developers understand the project clearly. UI designers need to work with the developers closely to test the design of the product and to give feedback until the final version of the design is completed.
User experience designer remains complete in charge of the project and responsible for the overall outcome. The UX designers closely supervise the work of UI designers and coordinate with the UI designers as well as developers to ensure that the final product matches the need of the audience.
How can UX and UI designers live in harmony?
The job of a UX designer and a UI designer is completely different and comparing the jobs, it may appear that each work independently of the other. However, in reality, both UX designers and UI designers are extremely important to design that can serve to produce the best possible design for user experience. UX designers decide about where the audience wants to reach and UI helps to achieve that goal or UX designer makes the process engineering and UI designer make detailed engineering.
If UI is extremely beautiful, without the help of UX users will find the design useless and the underlying requirements of the users will remain unfulfilled. On the other hand, even if the UX design concept is excellent, without a proper UI design, the brilliant ux design description may be blunt and ineffective. For making the best design of a website for developing a winning product, both the UX and the UI design are essential.
The UX and UI design focus on achieving the ultimate objective of bringing user satisfaction and pleasure, that is very essential for business success. Both the UX and UI designers complement each other to bring the desired outcome of the business. While a UX engineer is primarily responsible to design a brilliant concept of the product, the UI designer focuses on the aesthetics part to make the product look beautiful. When both work in tandem, a company can easily become successful in tapping a large customer base in its favor.