UX Audits: Uncovering the good, the bad and the ugly.
A website is a sophisticated entity. It needs to be focused as much on target users as a client’s business. Our UX and usability team uses every tool at our disposal to make sure websites do exactly what our clients want, and create compelling experiences for users.
Carrying out UX audits on existing sites exposes elements which might not be working or perhaps uncover areas for improvement, and almost always identifies opportunities to consider. We’ll use tools and analytics to look at way users navigate the site, explore content and interact with our clients. By interpreting user journeys and behaviour, we’re able to make actionable recommendations that will improve user experience and the overall performance of the website.
A UX audit is a valuable exercise that should really be carried out on a regular basis. User behaviour and business strategy tends to evolve, and so websites should evolve to match.
Bringing websites to life early on the design process allows clients to gauge the look and feel of the website, and enables our team to plan and refine effective user journeys and content delivery. Creating detailed detailed wireframes has played an increasingly important role in the overall design process and wireframes have now become arguably the key stage in planning. We place wireframing firmly in the rationale zone of our design activity, and as such see the process as the route to answering very specific task model questions.
Our design and UX teams work closely from the outset, aligning objectives – including design, client and user experience – and key output goals. The design team communicates conceptual designs and approach to navigation and page construction technology to the UX team. This insight informs architecture creation, and prompts detailed low fidelity, high fidelity and interactive wireframes.
We typically work on the Low Fidelity wireframes together with our UX and Visual Design teams and in many cases with our client team in the same sessions. Low-Fi wireframes are used to explore the different content types that will be included in the new website and to plan out where the key pages of the website are and their overall role in the UX. Because we will have both the IA and Concept design in place we can work quickly to produce an overarching set of portraits for pages that helps confirm how we approach navigational complexities and the use of technology to overcome these.
Axure is our preferred tool to use when building testable wireframes. The Axure platform and our expertise in using it means we can develop shareable, near-html testable user journeys across key pages. Interactive and immersive prototypes can be used as part of a validated testing programme quickly and cost effectively without going to the additional time and cost of producing final artwork or writing code. Great for our studio, and great for clients!