In the dynamic world of Information Technologies, it is very difficult to find many stable laws that work regardless of the situation, market conjecture, and so on. Everything is constantly changing and the most important skill is the ability to change, pivot, make the right decisions on time. This situation simply forces entrepreneurs to reduce their risks as much as possible, including saving the budget by refusing any additional work. And in this matter, design always remains at the top of the reduction lists. In this article, we wish to explain why you need UI and UX design for startups and what you should know and focus on to succeed.
Does your startup need design?
First things first. We always want to answer this question affirmatively. Indeed, having a design is always better than not. But everyone understands that there are many pitfalls in this matter and too much depends on a large number of conditions that must be met. Without enough information, it is impossible to reliably answer this question. But we will try to create a kind of manual so that everyone could find the right answer themselves.
- First of all, it is important to understand what situation your startup is in right now. What are its tasks? Do you already have potential clients, or just need to attract them?
- UI design is what will help you attract new users. UX design will help you satisfy existing ones (and make them want to come back). You know better where your business is now.
- There is an idea that the B2C business can afford to abandon design in the early stages, but this is not true. In reality, UI/UX studio design are important for both B2C and B2B companies, even at the MVP stage and we’re about to explain why.
Good design is not only a matter of product attractiveness, but it is also a matter of functionality and user satisfaction. After all, research by industry giant Adobe suggests that 46% of users won’t buy a product if its design (be it an app or a website) is terrible. But what resources will be allocated for its development depends entirely on the position of your startup and the resources available.
How to create design properly?
Having answered affirmatively to the question of the previous section, you can move on to what you need to focus on and what steps you need to take in order to make things right.
Understand where and to whom you are selling your product
Remember that your goal is to achieve user satisfaction. Therefore, it is important to put yourself in their place at every stage of the development of a startup and understand what they expect from your product. There are two ways to determine the correct direction.
- Develop a collective image of your users. A medical application is different from a taxi call service, it is important to keep this in mind. Focus on your target audience, examine their pain points, create a user journey map, and try to understand how your product can help them.
- Take an example from your competitors. This is not an option if your product is something completely new and unique, but let’s face it – this is a very rare case. Most often, the segment already has ready-made or similar solutions that you have come up with how to improve. Regardless, their approach to design can be extremely rewarding, as someone else’s experience can help you avoid the pitfalls of investing in unnecessary features.
Prioritize and create
When working with a startup, it is very important to understand the priorities – what needs to be done now and what can be left for later. That is why the Lean Startup technique has become very popular in this matter. This method suggests that it is more important to determine the most essential things that should be developed now in order to show your product to users. The rest can be left for later. This method works identically from the design perspective. Determine what design features you need now. Do you need to attract new users? Create a beautiful UI. What features can you refuse of at this stage? A complex registration form, a convenient transition from page to page, beautiful pop-ups – all of this, most likely, will have a low priority in the early stages of design development.
Need for Speed
When working with design in a startup, it is important to act quickly, evaluate the result obtained, and change the strategy (if required). In general, in order to do everything right, you need to introduce such a concept as design thinking into the paradigm of your enterprise. At its core, it repeats many things from other directions, but boils down to the following:
– quickly identify the problem through a study;
– come up with creative solutions;
– create simple wireframes;
– evaluate user reaction;
– adjust your strategy to new data.
This mindset is perfect for developing a design for a startup. There is no need to immediately think about complex work. Instead, create simple wireframes and test user reactions, collect feedback. Another rule: don’t be afraid of failure. Design in many ways works on an emotional level, and it is very difficult to predict anything here. Simple design failures won’t take a lot of your time and resources but will give you an idea of where to go next. Need to start over from scratch? This is not a problem if you haven’t gotten far yet.
Summing up, we must say that design in a startup is not something that should take a lot of your time and effort. But this does not mean that it can be completely abandoned. The importance of design is huge, but with limited resources, you need to try small and quick solutions and look at the result. And before that, do not forget to study your users and your competitors’ strategies in as much detail as possible. Ultimately, your goal is to get a working design solution in the least amount of trials.