UI vs UX – What’s the difference anyway?
When you start the process of building your website, whether you take on as much of the workload as you can or outsource everything, one thing will become very quickly apparent to you: there is a lot of jargon to learn. You’ll likely become familiar with acronyms like SEO (search engine optimisation) and DNS (domain name server) but those aren’t the only terms you need to know. Too often we see business owners get overwhelmed by all the jargon and titles and phrasing and end up hiring somebody to build their website who doesn’t actually know how to meet their needs and give them the end results they’re looking for.
Well, at Mahi Web we speak fluent ‘online’, so in this month’s blog we’ll be looking at two trending and very important digital terms: UI and UX.
First of all, if you’re new to the game, UI stands for User Interface Design and UX stands for User Experience Design. We need to make one thing clear from the get-go, these terms are not interchangeable. And if you ever meet a web designer who tells you that they are, do not hire them!
User Interface Design is about the form and look of a website. Think more like a graphic designer; someone who’s main thought is “how can I make this site as visually appealing as possible?” Think about whoever created that iconic bird logo for Twitter or decided on the blue and white colour scheme and you’ve got the idea of a UI designer.
User Experience Design is focused more on functionality. And that doesn’t mean functionality that is void of beautiful design and visual spectacle, but a UX designer will look at a site and imagine how the user will actually interact with it. They’ll ask questions like: Is this information form too long?
Is this button positioned in the right place? Is the load time realistic for someone to wait? Is this website intuitive for an inexperienced user?
To put it simply a UX designer is the person who decided that users could double-tap to like an image on Instagram or that rotating your phone would convert a YouTube video to full screen. It’s all about creating a user friendly experience; a website that’s easy for users to interact with and doesn’t create any barriers to them moving forward and continuing on in their journey.
At Mahi Web you don’t have to choose between one or the other. Our designers have experience in both UI and UX and maintain focus on both aspects of your website at all times. To that end, we say ‘we don’t create show ponies, we build racehorses’… That’s because we are passionate about making sure your website doesn’t just look good, but that it performs – delivering a seamless, customer-centric experience that works hard to deliver on your strategic marketing objectives.
So now the next time you see UI and UX written somewhere you’ll know exactly what they mean! In a world where toddlers know how to use an iPhone before they are even learning how to speak, people expect websites to be intuitive, easy to navigate, and user friendly, and if yours isn’t chances are they won’t give it the time of day. If your business needs an impressive website that delivers results, don’t just settle for an artist with a nice portfolio, find yourself someone who thinks about the whole experience.