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4 key UX Design Principles and Practices Newcomer Designers Should Learn

Are you a newcomer in the world of UX design? You have a lot of things to learn to nail your job! But luckily, you’ve come to the right place to find all the information you need to design websites that attract, engage, and make customers come back.

Everybody talks about user experience these days, including entrepreneurs, marketers, consumers, and especially UX designers.

Lately, consumers have become very picky with their purchasing decisions, primarily because they have a range of brands they can choose from. They no longer “fall” for the impersonal advertising strategies, they have other criteria for choosing one product over another, and they know that they have the power to demand the best customer and user experiences.

UX has also come into the scene in web design. Why? Mostly because people spend more and more time online, which makes websites the main interface where brands connect with their audiences.

But UX design is an ever-changing field and it can be really challenging for new practitioners to keep up. Yet, there are some foundational UX design principles that every newcomer should understand. Let’s walk you through these principles and some key rules you should align your design practices with to grow an impressive web design portfolio.

Focus entirely on the users

As a UX designer, you’ll work with many clients and each of them will have unique vision on what they want their website to look like. Yet, their vision may not always be in favor of the customers.

Sure, a client may ask you to add a lot of elements to the design. But one of your responsibilities as a professional is to advise your clients on what’s best for their website and their business goals. And, to do that, you need to get your facts right. To spare you some time, we’ve gathered some of the essential statistics related to what users expect from a website design:

  • User experience increases the chances of customers recommending a product by 16% (Medium)
  • 93% of of users will leave a website if it doesn’t load fast enough(Hubspot)
  • Nearly 89% of consumers purchase the product or service from a competitor after having a poor user experience(WebFx)
  • 93% of users leave a website if it doesn’t display correctly on the device they are using(Hubspot)
  • 48% of users believe link a website’s the credibility of the business(Techjury)
  • Conversion rate can be increased by 74% if the load time of awebsite is reduced from 8 to 2 seconds(99firms)
  • 68% of Internet users click back and leave a website due to poor UX design(Financesonline)

Now, with all these stats in mind, you surely understand why you must focus entirely on users throughout the design process. So, when designing a website, keep in mind that what truly matters is what users actually want, not what you or your client think that users want.

Use the principle of hierarchy

Hierarchy is one of the most important UX principles because it helps users move through a product easily. There are two essential hierarchies we will discuss here: visual hierarchy and information hierarchy.

First, we’ll discuss information hierarchy, which is all about how the content of the interface is organized across the entire app or website. The top-level of the hierarchy is the navigation menu, which is often the first thing you see when you access a website. Next, the navigation menu leads users to secondary lists that become more and more specific. So, don’t try to reinvent the wheel on this one because this type of hierarchy is what users actually want as this hierarchy ensures a smooth navigation experience.

Secondly, we must also talk about visual hierarchy. How do you achieve a visual hierarchy? By making sure that you place the most relevant content prominently so that the main message stands out.

Design with accessibility and usability in mind

There are a few properties that define a user-friendly interface, including being useful, usable, accessible, and valuable. Here, we will focus on the UX design basics: accessibility and usability.

What makes a website design accessible? The website design must be usable for as many users as possible, including users with disabilities. To make it so, you must remove all obstacles. For example, let’s see how you can help users with visual impairments and users in low-light settings: you can use high contrast between text and background colors.

Next, usability is crucial in UX design because no matter how aesthetically appealing the design is, if it’s not easy to use, you’ll be driving away many users. How do you design with usability in mind? You make sure that the site isn’t cluttered and that each of its icons, buttons or snippets of information does something or has a purpose.

In other words, your job as a UX designer is to make sure that people actually do the actions your clients want them to do, instead of wasting time on figuring out how to navigate the site.

Use typography right

Typography in UX design has many purposes, including blending a powerful message with appealing visuals and even improving accessibility. Plus, it has a significant influence on users’ perception.

Yet, effective typography isn’t just about its content, but also about how it is presented, including font size, color, width, and text hierarchy. How do all these aspects impact user experience? If fonts and typography as a whole are poorly legible, users will face problems with navigation and with receiving the brand’s message correctly.

For example, large typography is one of the web design trends that are gaining momentum. What’s the deal with large typography? It is a great way to deliver a strong and simple message about the brand, your client, that customers simply can’t ignore.

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