Design

Excellent Design Used to Be a Luxury

Here's Why It's Now a Necessity

February 7, 2017

Design has become a key part of product development for numerous reasons. Many of them have to do with consumer trends, financial benefits, and preventative measures. Here are the top reasons why excellent design has become a necessity.

Startups Benefit

User experience and user interface are probably the two most important aspects of software and web design. These components connect the user to the site or software’s functions. If users don’t respond well to the overall design and interactivity, they could be lost as fast as they were gained. Great UX and UI will can make someone a lifelong user.

The Experts Say So

Experts now say that design is more important than ever before. That’s because the 2015 Design in Tech report found that “great design is changing how [people] live and work.” Project management tools like Jira from Atlassian are helping small businesses simply and easily strategize and track progress. Great designs are likely to continue to grow in importance.

It’s Valued in Every Market

The 2015 Design in Tech report also revealed that some unlikely businesses are finding good design to be integral to their success. Businesses like financial firms are hiring some of the world’s best designers to build their websites and custom software. It looks like even the most business-minded professionals are seeing the benefits of great design.

A photo of Jira from Atlassian, a product with great design.Source: atlassian.com

It’s Good for Business

The reason designers are valued in every market is because research has proven that companies with excellent design do better financially. According to TechCrunch, adding a team of great designers can boost a company’s value and growth.

Designers are Tech’s Superstars

Designers in tech are being hailed as the apex of a company’s success. That’s not to say that other members aren’t integral, but it’s true that there are a lot of options out there, so design is often what sells the product.

Design Thinking is Popular

Design thinking is seen as a competitive strategy for development. The strategy simply asks that team members use empathy and creativity in their work. The best way to ensure these are met is by using agile development, like design sprints or SCRUM.

It’s a User’s Market

It takes a user less than three seconds to identify a focal point on a webpage. It’s said that the only thing that really keeps a user interested at that point is design. If that’s true, then the design of your website could make or break your business’s success.

Big Companies Set the Bar

Large tech companies set the bar for good design. Unfortunately, the small companies have to stack up against the designs that come from more robust design teams, like those at Google. If you really want to be able to compete in the big leagues of development, ensuring excellent design should be your first step.

A photo of all the Google products logos, products with great design.Source: odosta.com.

Establishing a Brand

Regardless of your company’s market, branding is incredibly important. Great brand development helps people recognize your company on sight. That’s why all the great tech design companies have amazing branding. That starts with picking the right fonts, logo, and styling. Doing so requires you to know your products and your audience. Without excellent design on your company’s website, app, or software, you could be losing out on returning customers.

Building Personality

Beyond building a brand, it’s important to show people the personality behind your products. Design does just that because it’s like the face of your product. Of course, functionality is extremely important as well, because your product needs to work well. However, the look of your product is what draws people in to try it out in the first place.

Meaningful Results

Pointed design brings meaningful results. Good design always has purpose. No logo is placed arbitrarily, and no menu is made without forethought. At least, they shouldn’t be. Purposeful design is goal oriented, and therefore, improves business outcomes.

Making a Product Enjoyable

There are different aspects of design that make an impact on your user, but user experience design probably makes the biggest impact. Basically, great user experience design helps people better enjoy your product. If they have fun using it, they’re likely to use it again. Good user experience design is what makes users come back for more.

Prevent Foreseeable Problems

Functionality glitches turn users away fast. These bugs could be prevented with adequate design strategies. Having a dedicated design staff involved in the development process will help your programmers and tech designers solve problems before the product goes live.

Effective Leadership

Many designers end up being great leaders. Designers who become team leaders are creative, tech savvy, and knowledgeable. They make incredible leaders who can really help structure your project’s development cycle.

Design is a Powerful Force

According to The International New York Times design critic, Alice Rawsthorn, “Design is one of the most powerful forces in our lives, whether or not we are aware of it, and can also be inspiring, empowering and enlightening.” Rawsthorn makes a great point. Design impacts users even if they don’t know it. Now that’s ultimate power.

A photo of Alice Rawsthorn, a design critic.Source: parisphoto.com

Design Wins Awards

Award-winning products in the tech field must have excellent design. You’ll never find a product that has won a tech award that is hard to use, unappealing, or unresponsive. Design standards are nonnegotiable, and your product won’t get any acclaim without them. The highest acclaim, though, is given to innovate designs.

It’s Cost Effective

Some development teams ignore or shorten the design section of the project to lessen timelines because management thinks that will be cost effective. However, that’s not really true. In the long run, solid design strategies save businesses money because they reduce customer turnover, bounce rate, bad reviews, and more.

Fewer Updates and Bug Fixes

Bad design impacts the product later on down the road. More work ends up being required of the development team to fix problems that come up as customers start using the product. More work means spending more money. If you start with ample time for designing, you’re likely to prevent extension updates and copious bug fixes.

Avoid Brand Degradation

Once that buggy version of your product is on the market, users are going to associate your brand with bad design. So even if you fix the original issues in the product, users may still be hesitant to update. New products could also suffer because the brand has been degraded so much.

It Could Save Lives

At this point, all industries require some tech integration. Industries that impact people’s health and wellbeing have a significant challenge to face when their tech products aren’t user friendly. The healthcare industry, for example, uses a lot of software to track patients, medicines, and procedures. In this field, a user error could have big consequences. Designing for the user can prevent such things from occurring.

Plans for a Prototype

Without a good design, how can you create a decent prototype? You can’t! A testable prototype must have the backbone of a well thought out design to be effective. Otherwise, your test group might not even get a representative sample of your product.

The Necessity of Design

It’s clear that developers are no longer in a world where design doesn’t matter. To be honest, design has always mattered, and the products with the best designs have always been the ones to do best in the marketplace. As you can tell, the benefits of having an adequate design cycle are tremendous. Regardless of the product’s purpose or audience, great design will help your product succeed.

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