What is the Difference Between UX and UI Design?

What is the Difference Between UX and UI Design

So you want to design your own website. That’s great – you’re a few steps closer to making your website developing dreams a reality. However, there’s more to web development than just choosing a web hosting platform and a web domain. In fact, web designing has a lot more to do to do than just choosing colors and layouts. Before you finalize your website design, you might want to learn more about UX and UI design.

Website Designing: What Does the Data Say?

Still wondering if you should focus on website design? It’s important to remember that web designing can actually be the one step you need to make a website that people will always look back to. Web developing services such as ours in Pnetform focus not just on building your website, but making sure it attracts consumers. A lot of UX and UI actually play in this too. For instance:

  • Almost half of website visitors (48-percent) see web design as the most integral component of a brand’s credibility. In fact, 38-percent of viewers will skip sites that don’t look appealing to them.
  • More than half of viewers will choose to read content presented beautifully than plain content.
  • Almost half of website visitors will actually close your website if your images take too long to load. In fact, it’s been observed that sales actually drop if your webpages take too long for viewers to see.

The Difference Between UX and UI Design

Everyone can perhaps agree that website design has a lot to do with a user’s overall impression of a brand. After all, pretty and functional designs tend to be perceived as more reliable than other websites. However, should website developing really involve UX/UI web design? Would this really affect choices such as web hosting and web domain?  Learning about the difference between UX and UI design might help your brand setup more reliable and effective websites.

Unveiling UX: User Experience Design

Designers can define UX as the process of improving a product’s ease of use, usability, and impressions from the point of view of customer interaction. An interesting part of this simplified definition would be the lack of any mention of technology. User experience or UX focuses on the customer first and foremost.

  • UX has been first coined by Don Norman of the Nielsen Norman Group Design Consultancy. According to Norman, UX pertains to “all aspects of the end user’s interaction” with any or all of the company’s elements. These include branding, services, and products. You may want to pay attention to the “all aspects” part of the definition. This means UX can be designed regardless of the medium you’re looking at.
  • Some might say designers just use “UX” as a fancier term than “market research.” A lot of this has to do with the fact that UX really has a lot to do with analyzing consumers and building product designs based on gathered data. For instance, UX deals with analyzing competition and customers, developing and prototyping products, and tracking implementation and distribution. All of these affect UX design, but they also are a part of market research.
  • Given the “all aspects” approach of UX, business owners can look at UX outside digital. UX designers can use their talents to build user experience designs based on services and products across various niches and settings. The focus here really has a lot to do with ensuring customers get the best experience out of your product.

Uncovering UI: User Interface Design

Whereas UX focuses on attaining maximum customer satisfaction, UI focuses on tailoring products to meet these needs. Does this sound similar to the definition of UX? It does. Defining UX and UI separately can sometimes confuse even professional designers. This is because the nature of work they do really tend to overlap. However, it might help to look at UI as a process that needs to produce a plan on how to best interact with a product. Whereas UX focuses on agreeing on meeting Experience A, UI focuses on how you can get users to meet Experience A in the first place.

  • A lot of people tend to see UI as simple graphic user interfaces. We can’t blame them for the misconception. After all, UI usually results in designing interfaces that make for responsive, guiding, and attractive experiences whenever users access products and services. However, UI isn’t limited to graphics. UI can involve which buttons to use in a machine, or how best to look at the arrangement of particular elements.
  • UI has a lot to do with making sure you can do enough research to identify how users want to use products and services. UX allows you to identify a need people want to meet. However, UI focuses on making sure you meet those needs in the most attractive and most satisfying way possible. Is red the best color for this button? Is this the best angle for a particular graphic? If you’re looking for even the tiniest adjustment to improve the way someone uses your products, you’re looking at UI design.
  • Designing UI involves a lot of digital aspects and dimensions. This can be rooted in the reality that today’s digital-oriented society do focus on enhancing experiences via effective and attractive visual design. It’s not about pretty websites anymore. It’s how fast images load, it’s how easy you can navigate to a webpage, and it’s how you use web development to optimize your code. A lot of this lies in the backdrop of UI design because whereas UX handles experiences, UI taps into maximizing a person’s perception of your brand.

UX and UI: How Are They Different?

With the above in mind, we can at least say that we’ve defined the basics of UX and UI as separate yet very similar concepts. We now know UX and UI have a lot to do with helping users get the best experience out of your products and services. However, in what ways are they different?

  • UX deals with the big, UI deals with the small – While the two are similar concepts, you can’t look into the design with these two elements interchanged. Building a UX or user experience design stems from the need to solve a particular user need. As such, UX designs actually have a lot to do with how business models meet a targeted need. Meanwhile, UIs or user interfaces combine branding with interaction design. UI designers aim to build the best tools and mechanisms users can use to interact with your website. It helps to separate UX and UI with the scope of their designs. User experience deals with the big experience, which involves how users use your brand to meet their needs. Meanwhile, user interfaces deal with the small experience, which involves the instruments users will use to benefit from your brand.
  • UX tackles needs, UI tackles wants – If you want another distinguishing feature between UX and UI, we can do this using brands. For instance, if you’re looking reliable web development in Hong Kong, you can look into Pnetform web design services, or the services of Brand B. At Pnetform, we don’t just provide web designs – we make sure we provide web designs compatible for mobile devices. Meanwhile, Brand B can provide extremely cheap web designs. Both our brands can provide web development services, but you might want websites that are compatible for mobile devices. UX and UI work in a similar fashion. UX focus on making sure users meet their needs using your brand. However, meeting such a need can be tackled in many ways, and users might prefer meeting their needs with Method A instead of Method B. UI makes sure they use the best methods that appeal to your users.
  • If you want another distinguishing feature between UX and UI, we can do this using brands. For instance, if you’re looking reliable web development in Hong Kong, you can look into Pnetform web design services, or the services of Brand B. At Pnetform, we don’t just provide web designs – we make sure we provide web designs compatible for mobile devices. Meanwhile, Brand B can provide extremely cheap web designs. Both our brands can provide web development services, but you might want websites that are compatible for mobile devices. UX and UI work in a similar fashion. UX focus on making sure users meet their needs using your brand. However, meeting such a need can be tackled in many ways, and users might prefer meeting their needs with Method A instead of Method B. UI makes sure they use the best methods that appeal to your users.
  • UX focuses on use, UI focuses on appearance. Another key difference between UX and UI lies in how their designs affect different outcomes of your branding. If you’re focusing on web design, you might want to try looking at UX versus UI as practicality versus appearance. If you’ve noticed, a lot of UX designs focus on bringing a particular need to light. UX designers work on making sure your brand gets to meet these needs. Meanwhile, UI designs focus more on making products appealing to customers. UI designers focus on making users use products because they like them. So in this case, let’s assume your focus on web development will be making an online shop. Your UX can help create a shop that responds to queries within minutes. Your UI can help users access this service easily.
  • UX has many dimensions, UI focuses on interfaces. Perhaps the easiest way to separate UX and UI will be referring to their names. UI, or user interfaces, really focus on interfaces. This doesn’t mean they’re limited to graphical user interfaces, though. Rather, user interfaces focus on how products appear, especially if they have interfaces. What’s the best way to show a particular feature? How can we convince people to click on a particular button? Meanwhile, UX can be used across different brands and products. Designing “experiences” can pertain to many things, and there can be a million needs that can be solved by meaningful user experiences.

UX and UI Design: Definition and Approach Make All The Difference

User interfaces and user experiences seem like very similar subjects, and indeed they’re part of the same core concept. UX and UI design remain integral in making sure users of products and services remain happy and satisfied with their purchase. However, the two (2) topics differ in their approach to making sure this happens. These differences matter regardless of the platform, such as website developing and website designing. It’s important to remember that UIs exist as a means for users to “interface” or interact with products and services, hence the name. Likewise, user experience encompasses the entire spectrum of materials, items, and tasks involved in ensuring audiences are satisfied with their experience of a product or service.