While the concept of user experience and the term UX have become seemingly ubiquitous in the workplace, most non-UX professionals still have the wrong idea about what it is. Here are nine such common UX myths and ways to bust them like a boss!
UX Myth 1: Design is of paramount importance
A broken link, 404 error pages, the text on a CTA (Call to Action) button are elements on a page, which a UX designer can’t afford to ignore even if their design is near perfect. It is the fine details, which have a profound impact on the user experience as well as the conversion rates.
Your role as a UX designer is to leave no stones unturned to ensure that the website not only looks good, but also functions in the best way, giving an enhanced experience to the users. Fix all the broken links, give users creative 404 error pages, settle for interesting text on CTA buttons and pay attention to every small detail that can improve end-users’ experience on the website.
UX Myth 2: One size fits all
Another common myth that designers believe in, is – one size fits all. They think that if a UX design worked on a website, it will definitely work on their websites as well. Well, it is not wrong to draw inspiration from successful websites but then, you also need to understand what worked for those websites and why.
Don’t just copy their UX tactics blindly; know the reasons and implement the ones which will work in the favor of your website.
UX Myth 3: UX and UI are the same thing
UX equals to UI is probably one of the biggest bluffs floating around in the design circuit for quite some time. UX is not the same as making a product usable i.e. to help users easily accomplish goals. It is more about providing users a meaningful experience, which engages them completely and makes them take a call to action.
(Image credit: http://www.great-web-design-tips.com/web-usability/71.html)
Your course of action should be to give them an immersive design, which captivates them and retains them on the site so that they can inch towards the goal.
UX Myth 4: People don’t scroll/read
Let’s face it. ‘Above the fold’ doesn’t really exist anymore and people do scroll to go through content ‘below the fold’, especially when they are using their mobile devices. Think of Pinterest – the social media website with a great interface and the option of infinite scrolling. The trick to apply is to design the page for retaining users’ interests and encouraging them to scroll.
Parallax scrolling is one of the best ways to do this and you can draw inspiration from many websites, which have successfully incorporated it. Storytelling is another way of getting visitors interested and involved in the website and navigating it without feeling compelled.
UX Myth 5: Only amateurs test design
Test, test and test your UX design some more, even if you are an expert designer. Usability testing is the best option to rely upon as it gives a comprehensive analysis of the design, including details which might have skipped even an expert’s review. So, go for it without thinking that it is a trivial task on hand that needs to be tackled only by amateurs.
UX Myth 6: Focus more on homepage
Many prominent UX experts focus more on designing a flawless homepage. Taking the baton from them, budding designers and developers end up spending maximum time and resources on designing the homepage and neglecting inner pages, which are equally important. You need to remember that your end-users’ browsing habits on search engines as well as within the website are changing and as such, a homepage cannot guarantee maximum conversions.
The solution is to give equal importance to all the pages on your website from the UX point of view.
UX Myth 7: White space can be neglected
More often than not, empty space on a web design is neglected by designers who think that it is nothing but sheer waste of screen real estate. However, white space or negative space is an essential element and very much a part of the UX. After all, it reduces clutter and makes reading easier for visitors and draws attention to various elements on the screen. White space also makes the interface aesthetically appealing.
It can never be neglected.
UX Myth 8: Icons improve usability
There are scores of icons or icon packs readily available for download for UX designers. By definition, icons represent an action, idea or object, visually. When icons are ambiguous, users get confused and annoyed, often abandoning the website in the process.
Also, let us not forget the fact that icons are hard to memorize by the users, especially if they have never been used in living memory! Many of them require accompanying texts to understand the underlying meaning and this is what hinders the usability in the long run.
(Image credit: https://pixabay.com/en/icons-flat-design-design-web-393805/)
Icons do add value when they are universal.
For instance – play, pause, reply, social media sharing, mail, search are some of the icons, which can be easily understood by the users irrespective of their geographic location. If the same icons are creatively designed such as – drawn by hand, then they also add to the aesthetics of a web-page and make it look more appealing.
UX Myth 9: More choices impress users
Choices are good. In fact, choices are great. But when there are too many choices on a website, it becomes difficult for users to work their way in and around the interface without getting distracted!
High abandonment rates. No wonder designers are still following to the ‘less is more’ philosophy and settling for minimalist websites, which make users take less number of steps for a call to action.
Basically, don’t bombard your end-users with more options than they can handle and keep the interface clutter-free.
Expertise in UX design comes through continuous study and practice. It also comes from debunking these age old myths, which allow designers to derive maximum benefits of UX for their projects.
Do you have any other UX myths that need to be debunked? Let us know your views.