You are entrepreneur or a startup founder and you have a brilliant idea for an application that will change the world. You already know what the product should do more or less, you might have a business strategy and maybe you already have a small beta being used by some customers. Here are a few questions and answers that will help you optimize your UX and sell your idea.
(The video is in Hebrew and contains English subtitles)
1. What UX process will get me to the next level?
● If you are in the initial stages of the product you should focus on user research. Talk to as many potential users as you can, understand their wishes and needs and how they work currently, with what tools / competitors. Users’ research is the most important part at this stage. You could also try guerilla user testing- create an initial design and show it to potential users and listen to them.
If you are in the initial stages of the product you should focus on user research. Talk to as many potential users as you can, understand their wishes and needs.
● If you are before the fund raising round, you should consider creating an interactive demo or a few static screen graphic design as part of your presentation. Since you are at this stage I imagine your resources are limited and you need to decide if you could handle it without a UX or UI professional and what you need in order to convince the VCs. Your decision should rely on a few considerations: If your idea is easy to imagine and understand, I’d hire a good graphic designer. If your idea is complex and disruptive, I’d consider consulting a UX expert (maybe as a partner) in order to understand your product and user more profoundly and create an interactive demo in addition to the graphic design. This process will help you understand your market value and user needs in addition to creating an interactive demo that will enhance your selling pitch. You should take into account that in many cases a design at such an early stage could not be used in the “real” product.
● If you are a funded startup and you already have a beta you should go through a full methodological UX process (users’ analysis, flows, tasks, wireframes and UI design). This process will demand more resources and time and will bring about better UX and more customers.
2. Do I need UX? UI? What’s the difference?
If your product is a light and simple mobile app or a game of which there are many similar products around, all you need is a good UX oriented UI-graphic designer. If your product is fresh and complex, for expert professional end users you’d better hire an experience UX professional.
If your product is fresh and complex, for expert professional end users you’d better hire an experience UX professional.
3. How do I choose the right expert?
● The first thing you could consider is- should I take a UX co-founder? Some of the most successful startups were founded by UXers- Pinterest, Kickstarter, twitter and YouTube. If you find the right person it might really help.
● If you chose to hire a consultant or an employee you should look at a few points. I’ll start with the less important capabilities: domain experience, experience with similar apps and knowledge in a specific platform or technology- all these should not guide you while choosing a UX expert. A knowledgeable expert will inherently have these abilities- this is what they do all the time: understand different users from various domains, in different platforms and represent them in the UX process. The most important aspect you should consider is the match between the UX expert abilities and what you need from them at this stage of the product. If you need an overall process, system analysis and high level thinking, you need an expert who thinks at a high level about your product strategy and users without falling into the small controls and details. If you need to elaborate on an existing application’s capabilities, you need a more detailed oriented professional. If you mainly need better visuals and the ability to sell the UI, a UI graphic designer will answer these needs.
I advise you to check out the person that will guide you during the process (especially when he is from a big agency). Look at their LinkedIn profile, their recommendations, their deliverable and if they worked on various types projects. Meet with them and pay attention to the way they present their projects and what they did in the process.
A small tip: if the UX expert cannot explain in a single sentence what the application is and what the users do, I would not select him for the project.
If you ask yourself these questions you will probably know quite easily who is the right UX expert and what is the optimal process you should take in order to get to the next level and sell more.
I’d be happy to hear your thoughts. You are welcome to comment and share.