User testing is a great way to validate assumptions and gain new insights about how people interact with our websites and apps. When it comes to eCommerce (and in particular mobile commerce or “mCommerce”) it’s critical to understand how people find and purchase products online. This was evident on one project where we were tasked with testing the mobile website design for retail membership giant, Sam’s. As it turns out, there are many common navigation patterns that aren’t nearly as effective as people might think.
Think of the app on your phone that you love using: the one that just makes sense when you use it, the one that feels like it was built with you in mind. This is good UX or User Experience. Good UX makes an application sticky; it invites new users and retains active users. UX is the process of designing an application (or product) that is intuitive for people to use by considering how they will use it. Intuitive interactions are important for every project simply because people like things that are ‘easy to use’. However, creating a product that is easy to use takes lot of time, expertise, and iterations.
There is nothing more rewarding than watching people use your app and seeing how they interact with it. User testing is a lot like making dinner for someone; you choose a recipe, ingredients, and invest time making a meal you hope your guests will like. Then you sit down with them and talk about what is good about the meal, what could be improved, and if you’d make it again. At Bitovi, we put a lot of value on testing our designs (and our assumptions!) to be sure we’re building the right thing for our clients and our clients' customers.
While re-designing the CanJS website, I ran into a few issues coding the new layout. I needed a way to create a fixed header and a fixed flexible sidebar that would adjust its width based on its content. This meant that the main content container also needed to flex to accommodate more or less sidebar content. This post will show you how I created this layout hack using Flexbox and I will explain how to create your own html template that contains the following:
Most UX processes value low-fidelity design early in a project’s life: simple, hand-drawn sketches, basic wireframes, and even boxy prototypes. It isn’t until later in the process, as the details get filled in, that higher fidelity designs get introduced. It makes sense: lo-fi designs are quick and easy which makes for faster turn-around in an iterative process. But are low-fidelity designs always the best way to go?
After a technology-filled day at work, one of my favorite ways to relax is to sit with my dog and knit something. I love the tactile qualities of fiber. I can create something both appealing and functional (much like the interfaces at work), but without hunching over my laptop.
Lots of design teams can create attractive and functional apps. So what makes Bitovi's design team special?
While doing usability test on a project is a no brainer, it can be challenging to make it part of a fast-moving Agile environment. To overcome this challenge here are 10 best practices you can start using today.
When designing web and mobile apps, we aren’t fully delivering experiences that allow the user to control the interface in a way that makes sense to them. We talk about delighting the user and having empathy, but more often than not, we tend to miss the mark and deliver a frustrating experience. It's time that we consider giving the user more control with how they prefer the interface to function.
Style Guide Driven Development (SGDD) is a fairly new term I first heard from Nicole Sullivan’s talk about her experience on a project for Pivotal Labs. But thinking about some more, I realized SGDD is, at a high level, a practice many are already doing: developing components and documenting them in a style guide.