I thought about the things that are contexts for creating good UI. I posted about my question and consideration for good UI last June (it’s a Japanese post). Recently I thought about the topic a little more, here is my notes.
When we create user interface, usually we define target users. User types I come up with at first are
- Beginner, who is not familiar with the site/system
- Expert/Advanced, who successes with the site/system
Another user types could be
- Consumer, who uses the site for his hobby, personal matter
- Business, who uses the site for his job
So there are 4 types of users in conbination of the above.
- Consumer, Beginner
- Consumer, Expert
- Business, Beginner
- Business, Expert
While there are also some types for sites/systems. In terms of the purpose of the site, I come up with
- Tool, which is just a part of process for the user to achieve his goal.
- One stop solution, which provides whole process from the beginning to the end of the user’s goal.
(I couldn’t find good words to express it, so I use these words for now.)
From another aspect, there are two types of sites/systems.
- Standard, that is known by a lot of people
- New concept/innovative, people need to start to understand what it is
So there are 4 types of sites/systems
- Standard, Tool
- Innovative, Tool
- Standard, One stop solution
- Innovative, One stop solution
In addition to these user and site types, we need to thinkg about situation of your site/system.
- Early stage, that means the site/system just started and doen’t have many users, less knowledge base
- Experienced, means the site/system is grown enough. It has many expert users
Thinking about the target
When we create a new UI, I think we should think about the above types in conbination. Here are some examples of my personal thoughts.
I should target beginner user if my site/system is in early stage. Of course it depends on my strategy, for example, if my site is standard type and there are many competitors, I may target expert users to differentiate my site (but it may be wrong because the target user cost to switch the service.)
If my service is in experienced stage, I provide it for business users, I should target expert users and optimized the usage for the users. Additionally I may need to provide some guidance for beginners to encourage them to be experts. Why? Because I think business users can pay cost to study it for their profit. They won’t quit the service easily compare to consumers.
If it’s innovative, new concenpt type of feature, it would be the best for business users that the UI helps to understand the concept, the concept helps to understand the usage.
For Tool type site/system, I’d like to focus on the speed. I would provide less information, less eye-candy type of graphics.
I still don’t have the conclusion for this topic and don’t have concrete answer for each combination. I’ll think about this a little more, and write another post if I have a chance.