Brand and Business Need
It’s human nature: people like things to be easy and clear. And today, people have seamless user experiences at their fingertips, every minute of every day. Expectations are high.
So when a digital property isn’t easy to use, people get frustrated. And when they get frustrated, they go elsewhere – leaving with a poor impression of your business.
The good news is that building a great user experience takes work, but it’s not magic. You need the right expertise, a passion for listening to your users, and a willingness to test and learn.
The experts on Blue Fountain Media’s UX team bring all of those qualities and more. It’s their job to turn the frustration of “what’s going on?” into the joy of “that was easy” – designing standout experiences that convert prospects and keep customers coming back.
- What makes a great IA/UX team
Information architecture and user experience have a language all their own. But even if you’re not fluent, you should be looking for a UX team that:
- Really understands your users.
Your UX team should be obsessed with uncovering what users think, feel, and do – and translating their insights into an experience those users will love.
- Really understands usability.
Usability isn’t the only aspect of UX, but it’s critical. A UX designer should be able to prioritize and simplify important user task flows, apply recognized best practices, and be able to explain what they’re doing and why.
- Has the tools to test.
User testing isn’t part of everyone’s budget, but your UX team should be ready to recommend testing that makes sense from a cost-benefit perspective.
IA / UX
Our process is flexible depending on client needs, but the basics are always the same: turn a deep understanding of users into an intuitive experience.
Uncovering the business context
Like any BFM engagement, an IA / UX engagement starts with an understanding of the business goals driving your project, so we can set project goals and objectives and ultimately define success.
Keeping it user-centered
User research can take many forms. Semi-structured interviews, quantitative surveys, and user testing can all yield priceless insights, supporting later decisions with hard data.
We work with you to decide what kinds of user research make sense for your needs and budget, but we find user research is an investment that pays off in superior site performance.
Seeking feedback early and often
The ultimate test of any experience is how it performs with actual users. We use tools such as Optimal Workshop and Lookback to facilitate testing such as card sorting, first click testing, and task analysis. Again, we work closely with you to understand what kinds of user testing will make the most sense for your project.
Putting research to work
A persona is a fictional representation of a specific audience for your digital experience. A persona puts a name, a face, and a story to a group of users, while a user journey shows how a representative user accomplishes a task, mapping all key touchpoints along the way. These powerful tools are packed with insights about your audience, ensuring every decision we make is focused on your users.
Creating the Information Architecture
This is the Information Architecture part of the story. A Sitemap or App Map shows how each page or screen fits together within the experience, and how users will navigate the experience to accomplish their desired tasks.
The Information Architecture helps us understand the effort needed to build out all the pages, screens and functionality required by the site.
Drawing up the blueprints
Wireframes are representations of pages or screens. Prototypes take it one step further and show how important functionality will work.
Wireframes and prototypes are not designs, but show the flow and key interactions to guide the UI/visual designer, who will use these blueprints to make the design mockups look spectacular.
Ensuring a smooth handoff
Our UX team works side-by-side with designers and developers. They’re used to creating hyper-detailed specifications showing exactly how each interaction will work, so the experience can be built with maximum efficiency and minimum fuss.