User interface (UI) and user experience (UX) are two closely related terms that are often used interchangeably, but not always correctly. While their definitions intersect because, when done right, they ultimately lead to the success of a website, each refers to a distinct aspect of website building.
UI, at its core, revolves around how surfaces look and function. It is anything that a user could interact with in order to use a product or service digitally. It comprises touchscreens, pages, and even visual elements like buttons and icons.
UX, meanwhile, refers to the overall experience of a user that interacted with the digital product or service. Its main purpose is to make the website visitor’s journey to solve a problem as seamless as possible. UX designers work with other professionals, gather insights, and do experiments on how to continually improve a user’s experience.
Now that we’ve discussed what roles UI and UX play in the way we interact with and experience technology, how can you apply them when building your UK company website? We’ve got some key elements for you.
1. Know who you’re creating the website for
The end user should always be on the forefront of the designer and developer’s mind. They will need to consider what sort of elements would appeal to the target user and encourage them to go through the site as the architects intended.
2. Opt for a clean, straightforward, and consistent design
Needlessly complex interfaces are your enemy. During the planning phase,continuously ask: will the end-user have to dedicate a significant amount of their time learning how to navigate and interact with the site’s features? If the answer is yes, then you’re doing it wrong. Your website should be uncluttered and intuitive.
3. Check, then double check load speed and device responsiveness
The secret to keeping your website users’ attention is not to lose it in the first place. Make sure that your platform loads within an acceptable period of time, its content adjusts to the device it’s being viewed on, and the system responds to their interactions.
4. Simplify navigation with shallow silos and less clicks
Ensuring that the entire website experience is as seamless as possible is the name of the game. You’ll want to develop a site that has an intuitive navigation interface that requires the least amount of clicks and effort for the site visitor to get what they want.
5. Utilise a visual hierarchy complete with visual cues
Visitors usually only come to your site for one thing; don’t expect them to go through all your content. What you want to do is design the layout according to a visual hierarchy, making the contents scannable and while making the most important bits pop.
Another way to achieve this is through visual cues like icons, images, colors, and typography. Use them to direct attention and make page elements more scannable.
6. Make filling out forms effortless
One of the best ways for your visitors to interact with your website is through a form. It’s also one of the easiest ways to capture user data — so don’t bog the visitor with clunky and complex fields. Make them as simple as possible by paring the fields down to only the most important ones and formulating questions to be as clear and concise as you can get it.
7. Conduct website tests and ask for user feedback
You don’t put a site together, have it go live, and then call it a day. Create a mockup site and then perform tests to make sure all its elements are behaving as intended. The initial testing stage also reveals UI weaknesses that you could do better. Only when these UI concerns have been addressed can you even think about releasing it to the public.
But, even when your site is out in the real (digital) world, you can still find ways to improve your visitors’ UX by asking their feedback on the system, interface, etc.
Turn to a Website Developer that Knows Its Stuff
To be able to say that your website is successful, you’ll need it to convert. And the way to do that is to design with excellent UX in mind, which, in turn, relies heavily on the state of your UI. It’s a domino effect, so you shouldn’t be looking to prioritise one over the other.
Axadra knows about these considerations and keeps them at the forefront of our mind when we design and develop websites for our partners in the United Kingdom. With our help, you could be turning a high return on investment on your digital asset.
Call us for more information.