From research to reality

So you talked to the users, looked at the competition, and now you have a good idea of what product to make.

But there is still a block when you sit down to actually visualize what the product will be. How to move forward?

Write the story. And if possible, draw it. But writing works well enough. Imagine you are the user and just let it flow. Write about how you came to the page, clicked the button, scrolled the options, then you realized you needed this and looked for that. Be the user. Write the thoughts exactly as they come to mind with every interaction. Do a little role-play in your mind.

This will let you know what features your product is missing, and fast. Sometimes I see products which have a nice, clean, appealing interface but leave me feeling clueless if I think something beyond the linear flow. It’s like they did not think through about what the user will feel. And an appealing UI works against the designer if the user’s story is not right, because it gives the impression that the look-and-feel is more important than what the user feels. Of course it’s hard to go back to such products.

Same goes for my own making process, I think I know what to make, but when I write (or draw) the story, something comes up which leaves me thinking – why did I not think about that? And it inevitably improves the experience.

So, try nailing that story with clarity. At every point, think what the user may think. Then, the final flow will be better.

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