As Don Norman clearly states, the design of the 21st century is to build products and services that solve problems, going beyond aesthetics.
A good digital product design is based on research to make decisions. The first step is to define the problem in order to be able to propose solutions, and after this, other more aesthetic questions are considered, such as colors and typographies.
When a product is designed, the objectives that have been set at the beginning must be achieved; the magic is to combine these objectives with the specific needs of the users who are going to use it, finding a middle ground between both parts.
It must also be taken into account that in the design work you have to collaborate with other departments, since there are many specialties that take part of the process, such as developers or marketing specialists. This is why it is essential to know how to work as a team and in a collaborative way.
The process of creating a digital product involves many different steps. From product definition, through product research, user analysis, interaction design, design implementation, launch and creation of quality content related to the product all the way to the communication skills to present the new digital product.
All these stages are the ones we analyze in depth in our Product Design Specialization Program (classes are in Spanish). In this video you can see what you will learn in it:
Principles of product design
One of the most widely used methodologies when defining the process to design products is Design Thinking, which can be synthesized in the following principles:
- Discover. The first essential step in designing a product is to discover and empathize with users in order to find solutions to their problems, understanding their motivations. To do this, it is necessary to know the target users perfectly, taking into account qualitative and quantitative data.
- Design. Once all the necessary information about the users has been collected, it must be evaluated, so that concrete design ideas can be proposed. In this phase it is very interesting to use tools that stimulate creativity to achieve better designs, which will later be evaluated.
- Develop. After making the designs, prototypes must be developed so that they can be tested, and gradual improvements can be made as feedback on the product is obtained.
- Improve. Finally, after having conducted tests with users to evaluate the product, the possible improvements that we have identified in this research are considered.
Even though it may seem a very simple process, each of the previously mentioned steps requires different processes that need to be followed for the product design to be a valid one and for us to be sure of the decisions we have made.
Designing is gathering information, researching and building things that satisfy the needs and solve the problems of the users. What designing is not is to make a beautiful product without any useful purpose nor to solve any problem.
This article is a translation of the following one published on our corporate website: