Research and design process
Most designers assure that they are in no way researchers, although in fact they are often engaged in research. Both design and research imply identifying the problem, taking the intended sequence of steps to study the problem and finding the most appropriate solution. Each step involves research, that is, the process of finding information necessary as a basis for each stage of the product creation process. So for design practitioners, design research is a search process.
Why is comparative design research important for any project?
The design of the research allows us to understand the complex behavior of a person, reaching the root of the problem, understanding the needs, desires and goals of the user.
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It also shapes the user experience that helps us resolve their main issues. In general, the data that we collect through design studies allow us to make decisions. This leads to the application of this data in useful applications that allow us to create products that are relevant, accessible and suitable for users and people with whom we work, whether they are project participants, product managers or other designers in a team.
Here are some statistics
- 82% of the websites we have analyzed have a light design, with natural and soothing colors.
- 79% have traditional block layouts, with two or three clearly separated columns and a simple, conveniently located navigation menu.
- 79% have some kind of introductory block at the top of the website.
- в 89% сайтах макет выровнен по центру. in 89% of sites, the layout is centered.
- 80% have a horizontal navigation menu with the alignment of elements on the right edge.
- 89% do not have a search function.
- only 3.7% use heavy Flash components throughout the site.
- the link to the contact information page is located in the upper right corner in 71% of cases, and/or at the bottom of the site in 45.4% of cases.
- 89% have the “About Us” link in the main navigation menu.
- only 47.2% have a company information page.
- 67.2% have a separate page with a list of services provided.
- 63.6% have separate pages for each of the implemented projects, which contain case studies, customer reviews, slideshows with screenshots, drawings and sketches.
- 74.5% of websites do not have a workflow presentation page.
5 methods in comparative design research services that KATASIS most often uses:
- Look carefully at the competitors.
- Talk to current, potential or former users. It is only important not to follow literally what people are asking, but instead, asking questions "why" and "why" many times in a row, go to an understanding of the sources of the problem.
- Talk to a person who understands the topic.
- Observation is one of the most effective research methods. They represent the observation of how a person uses a product in the process of some kind of activity. In particular, it is important what happens before and after the direct interaction, at what point a person turns to the product. In such observations, you can see a lot of unexpected. For any observation, it is important to take notes, record and/or photograph what is happening. Otherwise, half will be forgotten. Plus, good notes can make observation results available to more people.
- Usability testing is a type of research in which a person is asked to solve a specific task using a product and see how much the interface helps with this. For any interface, such testing is almost a hygienic necessity. Even the simplest test with several respondents allows you to understand how adequate the interface is and where people stumble or think.
Comparative design research methodology
Structuring helps to organize field design research information obtained during contextual interviews, ethnography and auto-ethnography. The main feature of the structuring tools — the presentation of the collected material in the most convenient for perception format — an important role is played by visualization, infographics.
Ethnography is the most common and effective way to dive into issues. As a rule, ethnography is combined with contextual interview tools, however, it can be applied independently.
Read more: Product design development
The main task of ethnography at the discovery stage in design research is to study the daily activities and behavior of people in their natural environment for a certain period of time.
Ethnography is one of the most effective tools for extracting user "tacit knowledge": the information that people themselves are not able to formulate because they do not give themselves the report. Most of the tools of ethnographic research came from anthropology and ethnography.
There are many ways to conduct ethnography to identify opportunities for creating innovation. Depending on the goals of the project, one or a combination of several methods can be chosen.
Autoethnography is similar to ethnography with the difference that the fixation of user situations is not done by the researcher, but by the user himself.
Autoethnography is indispensable in the following cases:
- When access to information is difficult (for example, night, remote studies);
- Observation is necessary over a long period of time, and the budget is limited;
- When the user experience is stretched in time and space and there is no possibility to predict when, how and where the user situation of interest will occur.
The main difficulty of autoethnography is to convey the purpose and objectives of the research to the respondents as accurately as possible, because in this case, in fact, the people themselves become “design researchers”.
Read more: Corporate design services
The name “contextual interviews” emphasizes their difference from interviews in a sterile format of focus groups or in usability testing laboratories.
There are two types of contextual interviews: express and in-depth. The choice of the type of interview and their combination depends on the objectives of the project, organizational and financial capabilities, the degree of product/service development and many other factors. The more experience in conducting an interview, the easier it is to decide which type of interview is specific, or their combination should be applied.
Comparative design research from KATASIS
The design of any project or resource is its graphics image and style. In order to attract customers, a resource must not be just one in its number. The main criteria are usability, originality, compliance with the subject matter and that everything is wrapped in high-quality modern web-design! KATASIS comparative design research company is ready to offer you web development and design research of any type. We provide an integrated approach to promoting your business on the Internet.