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Design is a rather broad and vague term. It exists in different sectors, whether it is industrial design (automotive, supplies), printing (magazines and other publications) or in high technology (mobile applications, websites).
With the emergence of the latter category, which focuses on creating interfaces for small screens, the concepts of user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) have come into consideration. In this article I will try to explain what UI and UX are and how they apply to WordPress.
But before, if you have never installed WordPress discover How to Install a WordPress Blog in 7 Steps et How to search, install and activate a WordPress theme on your blog
Then back to why we are here.
UI and UX are really close concepts that are complementary. But the fact remains that they are different in their objectives and scope. More practically, as a WordPress developer, a good understanding of these concepts is crucial in the design of your products and brands.
In web development, user experience can be defined as the culture of customer satisfaction and loyalty through the optimal development of usability and the positive emotional response that the visitor discovers on your website.
In this sense the user experience focuses on how the user feels the product. It puts into perspective different approaches for solving specific user-related problems. The goal is to position the objectives of your project on the same axis with the needs of your users. To better understand, let's see what UX Designers are doing.
Their job is to make sure your website navigation flows logically from step to step. They conduct user behavior tests looking for potential problems the user might encounter until they find the ideal user experience. Here is an example of job description of UX designer at Google.
User experience is at the heart of your brand. She defines theexperience what visitors experience on your website. What is important here is the entire experience, not the website or the components; because when the experience is good, your brand and your project are better off.
User Experience and WordPress
Much of the success of your website depends on its clarity, and how it is organized. The passage of a visitor to your website should be pleasant and meaningful.
Discover by reading this article How to provide WebP images instead of traditional PNG & JPG
In this period, the visitor should be deeply immersed in the website and the product in such a way that they identify with them and use them. A connexion must be born between the visitors and the brand (the website or the product), at the risk of losing them.
How to improve your user experience
The best way to improve your user experience is to involve it in all stages of development and its key aspects of: positive emotional response, sense of control, relevance and understanding. It is from these aspects that trends such as:
The responsive design : which unifies the user experience regardless of the devices. Avada Premium WordPress Theme is perfect for this feature.
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Content-based design : who presents the content in an aesthetic and obvious way for an exceptional experience. Example: Uncode
Now more than ever, you need to integrate user experience into your developments, so that your visitors (and you) are satisfied.
The user interface is the set of physical and technical elements with which the user interacts with a technology or a product, controls, buttons, checkboxes etc ... It is the visual representation of what has been designed by user experience. So what do interface designers do.
They are responsible for ensuring that the product interface communicates visually according to the principles that have been laid down by the user experience. Thus, they create typographies, icons, and all kinds of interactive elements that solve user problems. They are also responsible for the consistency of the interface.
WordPress user interface
WordPress developers and designers need to focus on design and functionality together in order to build clean, intuitive and efficient websites. In WordPress, the user interface also includes the dashboard.
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It is important that the dashboard is highly operational and efficient. With equal functionality, users will prefer a WordPress plugin that is easy to use, quick to learn, intuitive and interactive. For the example, here is the dashboard you know:
Now see what it was a little over 10 years ago:
and tell us which of the two versions you would prefer with equal functionality. Tell the truth.
Read also our article on How to publish your articles by email on WordPress
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The user interface is another determining factor in the success of your website because customers want something clean, organized, clear and intuitive.
How to improve the features of your user interface
The answer to this question cannot be exhaustive. To give you a picture, let's just say that the characteristics of a good user interface are:
- consistency : the design and behavior of the product must be consistent.
- intuitive : the product must work in a way that is natural to the user, without learning.
- responsive : the interface design must be flexible in order to adapt to all terminals.
- familiar : Design changes should not be suitable for the user.
- clean : Design and functionality must be organized and simple.
- aesthetic : the design must be pleasant and pleasant.
- efficient : especially if the user must spend a lot of time on your site.
- content-oriented : Powerful content, texts and visuals add value.
The trends in interface design are:
Google Material Design : This is the kind of design that Google, Apple and Microsoft use. It is content-driven, adaptable, streamlined, and combines visual movements and interactions. It makes websites cleaner and improves their performance.
Card Layout : It is a widely adopted design due to its simplicity and versatility. It can easily be integrated into a responsive layout for a better experience.
Microinteractions : These are moments embedded in the product that perform a small task. Programming an alarm and silencing your telephone are examples.
Even if the micro interactions are almost invisible they can add value if they are well implemented like the button J'aime Facebook.
Icons : They are perfect substitutes for heavy images and long texts. They can create a good atmosphere in a website.
Scrolling : The parallax effect or scrolling creates a good experience and shortens page load times. It's something more developers need to embrace.
Twentyfifteen is the epitome of a good user interface. It's clean, simple, efficient, responsive, content-driven.
Here we have done the tour. We have seen that the user interface is the set of components that allow the user to use the product effectively, while the user experience is the cumulative effect of all these components on the user. In other words UI is the way to get better user experience.
All in all, it can be very dangerous not to be able to tell a big difference between experience and user interface if you are a designer, a developer or if you have both. Not knowing the clear limit could harm your projects and brands.
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In this article, I have explained to you the difference between interface and user experience, how you as a WordPress developer can improve the characteristics of these concepts in your projects and how these concepts apply to WordPress.
However, you will also be able to consult our resources, if you need more elements to carry out your projects of creation of Internet sites, by consulting our guide on the WordPress blog creation or the one on Divi: the best WordPress theme of all time.
Do you know of any resources that may not have been mentioned? Other practices that improve the interface and user experience? How are they involved in the projects? Share them with us in the section of Comments.
We also invite you to share on your different social networks.