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Newbie UX: Something I learned about UX (Business vs Design) - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Sharing some tips to those who are new to UX and wish to learn more about UX. The findings and sharing are based on my past learning mistakes, experience and observations. \n\nhttp://blog.netizentesting.com/newbie-ux-something-learned-user-experience/ \n\nI\'m currently drafting a material on Startup (Digital) Marketing: Growth Hacking Thru UX. Stay Tuned. \nTo read more articles, visit: blog.NetizenTesting.com.

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Something I learned about

Newbie on

A Business Graduate turned UX-er

Contents of this slide are solely based on

my personal learning experience and observation.

I might be wrong!

Let’s talk!

Do not expect the following slides to be visually appealing.

I’m trying the lean way with words, you can call it ‘LEAN EXCUSE’.

sa@netizentesting.com @ChiewSA

When One Shares, Everyone Wins

Thanks for your great talk so can i conclude that we should focus on ui first then only ux
“Thanks for your great talk. So, can I conclude that we should focus on UI first, then only UX?”

A respond by an audience, after a very good UX talk by a speaker. @UXSG

I was shocked by the response
I was shocked by the response

The speaker had made it clear that “you should focus on UX first, then UI..”

On my mind..

“Hey, I would have had the same thought as the audience if I were listening to the same talk a year ago. Because, you won’t really understand UX until you try it yourself..”

Reason for created this slide: sharing my mistakes, observations and experience.

Some mistakes
Some Mistakes

I read books and I thought I will be doing quite good.

I did not believe in UX, until I experience it myself.

Although I did not admit, I doubted UX.

The same happened to me (business graduate), my friend (communication graduate) and even UI graduates..

Reading is good

but you have to experience it yourself

You have to experience the first ‘heartbreaking’ moment when you test your design with real users.. (& more)

Like many people
Like many people..

I thought it is only about DESIGN (visual/graphic)


User Experience

User Interface

What ReallyHappenedBehind

This is what people see


UX Iceberg -http://conversionxl.com/8-effective-ways-of-measuring-ux/

Then i realized ux ui
Then I realized.. UX≠UI

This caught my interest!

There are many interesting diagrams concerning UX (simply Google it!), this is my favourite.


What i like about ux
What I like about UX

Using DESIGN to solve problem..

Utilizing the power of design to achieve your business objectiveand/or empower your users to achieve their objectives.

The 300 million button story
The $300 million button story

Problem: Customers do not purchase from a major e-commerce site.

Approach: Usability Testing to find out that the real problems.

Findings: Users did not know that they can purchase without member registration (design flaws).

Fixes: Removed and replaced ‘Register’ button with ‘Continue’ button and add a simple description.

Results: purchase increased by 45%, additional 300 million sales in the first year.

Read more: http://www.uie.com/articles/three_hund_million_button/

A typical ux design process involves
A typical UX design process involves..


Task Models



Content Requirements

Information Architecture



Usability Testing


many more

There are many step-by-step processes proposed by different practitioners,

It typically starts with Research -> Analysis ->Design -> Test -> Iterate

We will talk a bit about
We will talk a bit about..

Information Architecture

Usability Testing

& more


Only quick intro and some tips based on my past learning.

Usability testing or user testing
Usability testing (or User Testing)

is a technique used in user-centered interaction design to evaluate a product by testing it on users.

This can be seen as an irreplaceable usability practice, since it gives direct input on how real users use the system.



Myths about usability testing
Myths about Usability Testing

(or User Testing)

“Can you conduct Usability Testing to solve this problem for my site?”

Myths about usability testing1
Myths about Usability Testing

Of course, I CAN’T ..

Usability Testing is to identify the REAL PROBLEMS, rather than solving identified problems.

Knowing where is the problem is half the battle won
Knowing where is the problem is half the battle won.

 If I had one hour to save the world, I would spend 55 minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution.

– Einstein, Albert.

Don’t rush for answers

Asking the right questions can be crucial to solve a problem

You understand your products more than me.

If you already know what is the (real) problem, you probably know better than anyone else on how to fix it..

Usability testing
Usability Testing

  • Test early saves you $$$!

    Testing at the earlier (or multiple) stages allows you to tweak quickly and more easily.

    It can be very discouraging to tweak a product when it is already finalized.

    It might be too late to make big changes during UAT before product launch.

Usability testing1
Usability Testing

  • It’s OKAY to test with prototype/wireframe.

    It is easier to tweak a prototype/wireframe than a final product. Also, it provides good validation insights too.

    When tested with prototype/wireframe, users are able to provide function-focused feedbacks, without being distracted with UI.

    What if I do not have a product to be tested?

    You can test on: competitors site, landing page, crowdfunding campaign, survey forms and more.

Usability testing2
Usability Testing

  • Test with 1 people using right method > test with 10 people using wrong method..

    Usability Testing sounds easy. In fact, it needs practices to be good.

    Asking right questions at the right time is essential.

Usability testing3
Usability Testing

A common testing session involves:

User – The one who is going to test a product.

Moderator – moderatethe test session by probing user (tasks & questions).

Observer – observes the user interaction and take notes.

Most people see observer an easy role as a note taker.

If you wish to learn more about Usability Testing and case studies that I involved, plz visit http://blog.netizentesting.com

The unsung observer
The Unsung Observer

There are generally 3 stages that I encountered on my learning as an observer

Level 1 - Only listen to what user said (think aloud)

Level 2 -Identify issues by observing both what user said and do

Level 3- Identify issues by just observing what user do without having them talk

The risk when you reached ‘level 3’,

your complacence might bring you biased data.

Believe in the user, not your own judgement.

I once thought that I will be good and handling the observer job well after reading some tips of being an observer.

‘Only listen to what user said’ in the level 1 is the common mistake that most beginners faced. (Observation from our workshop).

Information Architecture (IA)

Is all about on how information is organized, structured, and presented to users.

IA is important for large site.

Card Sorting – improves findability of a system

 a simple technique used to design information architecture.

Put it simply, it helps to organize information

Similar to Usability Testing, “You’re not your users”, you test it out to understand the mental model of your users.

Think IA of product categories in shopping mallConsumers know that DSLR and Point-and-Shoots camera are usually placed together

With good IA, comes good UX.

(Validated with Tree/Usability Testing)






Card sorting
Card Sorting

  • Usually low-tech (can be high tech too)

  • Easy to conduct and effective

    The process:

    Sorting a series of cards, each labelled with a piece of content or functionality, into groups that make sense to users.




Sport Shoes

You can use either Open Card Sorting, Closed Card Sorting or combination of both

Open Card Sorting

Participants are asked to organize topics from content within your website into groups that make sense to them and then name each group they created in a way that they feel accurately describes the content.

You will analyze a sitemap alike results




Learn more: http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/card-sorting.html

Step-by-Step: http://www.nngroup.com/articles/card-sorting-how-many-users-to-test/

Learn more: http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/card-sorting.html

Open Card Sorting


Do not ask them to perform content grouping and group naming at the same time!

Perform grouping first, then only proceed to naming.

Authorize participants to rearrange the content grouping from time to time.

(This usually appears when they’re asked to name the groups).

Feel free to learn the reasons why they grouped or named cards in certain ways.

You’re recommended to arrange the cards vertically. (Easier to view)


Learn more: http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/card-sorting.html

Step-by-Step: http://www.nngroup.com/articles/card-sorting-how-many-users-to-test/

Learn more: http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/card-sorting.html

Closed Card Sorting

Participants are asked to sort topics from content within your website into pre-defined categories.

It works best when working with a pre-defined set of categories.

Fixed Categories.

Participants need perform naming.

Learn more: http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/card-sorting.html

Step-by-Step: http://www.nngroup.com/articles/card-sorting-how-many-users-to-test/

Tree testing aka reversed card sorting
Tree Testing (aka. Reversed Card-Sorting)

Tree Testing evaluates the findability of information.

In another words, it evaluates IA (Information Architecture)

It provides answers to “How well users can find items on site?”

Can be conducted before or after Card Sorting.

Tree testing example
Tree Testing Example

Sample site contents

Ask a question for participant to answer










“You wish to buy your friend a

DSLR, where do you think you find a DSLR?”

Choices: Camera, Lens, Accessories, FAQ

Should also study whether participants managed to find the right answer with first/single or multiple attempts.

It can be very complicated on a large site

Different from traditional usability testing, it is not done on website but a simplified version of the site structure.

Recommended Remote tools for Card Sorting / Tree Testing : www.optimalworkshop.com

Improvement validation example
Improvement Validation (Example)

Usability Testing Results (Design 1 - Before Card Sorting)

2/8 users failed to find item A

4/8 users found item A with difficulty

2/8 users found item A easily

Usability Testing Results (Design 1.1 - After Card Sorting & IA Improvement)

3/8 users found item A with difficulty

5/8 users found item A easily.

Can further validate through Tree Test with more users.

Best practices
Best Practices

“Can you share some best practices?”

This is the questions that we always get, but..

There is no silver bullet

No One-Size-Fit-It-All solutions

Ux without research is not ux
“UX without Research is not UX”

- Nielsen Norman Group

I like this statement but I can’t agree completely with it..

I know there are many designers that craft great UX without user research..

You should conduct research testing interview etc but
You should conduct research (testing/interview etc.) but..

There are some design principles that help you improve UX of your products

Some useful design principles
Some useful design principles







These are some of the most important characteristics of good designs

Adapted from Intro to the Design of Everyday Things – Udacity, by Don Norman

Affordances signifiers
Affordances & Signifiers

An affordance is often taken as a relation between an object, or an environment, and an organism that affords the opportunity for that organism to perform an action

Signifier, a sign's physical form (such as a sound, printed word, or image) as distinct from its meaning

With affordances,

you know you can do something

(perform an action) with it.

With signifiers,

you know what you can do with it (as described).

It took me quite a while to have clear understanding between these two.

The next few slides will further illustrate the difference..


You can throw things in..

(that fit the shapes)


It is a box shaped thing that you can move, push etc..


Words and graphics that describe what you can throw inside..

Affordances without signifiers
Affordances without signifiers

Parking Pay Station

It took me a while to figure out where should I insert my cash.

I felt stupid and bad for making the people queueing behind me waited for a longer time.

Then I found out, I was not the only one who faced this problem. (phew!)



False Signifier


There are no stupid users, but not-so-good designers.

If u cant make users happy using your product, at least, don’t make them feel stupid..

Discoverability feedback
Discoverability & Feedback

Discoverability is about all operations can be discovered by systematic exploration of menus

Feedbackis about sending back information about what action has been done and what has been accomplished, allowing the person to continue with the activity


(Gulf of Execution)

What can I do?


(Gulf of Evaluation)

What happened?

Affordances &Signifiers are major contributors to Discoverability & Feedback.

Affordances & Signifiers

Click on this icon* to navigate to homepage



A button that I can click to understand how this site works



*Signifiers are not only words. Think of Facebook Like Button & Instagram Like Button.

Discoverability – What I can do here?

Account & Help

Room listing

Learn more about it

Perform search

With help of affordances/signifiers

Business Interest –prominent buttons that drive user actions



With help of affordances/signifiers

Feedback – What happened then?

more selections after inserting keywords

With help of affordances/signifiers

Discoverability of Instagram – What can I do here?

(signifiers + affordances)

More options


To unfollow

Viewing Style 1, Viewing Style 2, Locations, Tagged Photos

View Photos

Home, Explore, Camera, News, Profile.

Feedback of Instagram – What happened then?

(signifiers + affordances)

FEEDBACK - You’re now on this page


FEEDBACK – Disabled Function (faded)


Selected Section



Selected Section


If you were designing a product
If you were designing a product

  • Ask 2 questions.

    “Do they know what actions can be taken?” (Discoverability)

    “Do they realize what happened?” (Feedback)

Hey! Of course there are more things to learn and ask!

UX Pals?

“Hey, that’s Design Thinking/Lean Startup!”

A response that I received when I talked to Design Thinking and Lean Startup practitioners about the approach we do in UX design.

I did research and attended their workshops.

Indeed, there are some similarities…

UXD vs Design Thinking vs Lean Startup

(UX Design or User Centered Design)

Be HUMAN in your DESIGN..

There are more things to explore about ux
There are more things to explore about UX

Product Management

Service design

Content Strategy

Industrial Design

Spatial design

Visual Design


Interaction Design

Information Architecture

Spatial design

Lean UX

Design Thinking


UX is not applicable to only digital products.


Demand of UX

The web is getting more and more personalized too.

My Latest Takeaway about UX

Design for Accessibility is not about creating ugly sites that cater to disabled individuals.

Instead, it can be SELFISH and all about YOU

Simply put, you will get old one day and accidents happened

Touch wood!

Learn more: http://blog.adrianroselli.com/2014/10/uxsg-slides-selfish-accessibility.html

Enemy of u x




Ignorance is the Enemy..


If there is any UX topic that you find it interesting, google it!

There’re plenty of articles and discussions.

Get into experiment as soon as possible.

If you’re shy to find someone for user interview/testing

I’m here: sa@netizentesting.com / @ChiewSA



First appeared on http://blog.NetizenTesting.com

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