UX Design Basics | Aleksandar Cucukovic | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (30m)
    • 1. Class Intro

    • 2. What is UX Design

    • 3. What does UX designer do

    • 4. Is UX the same as UI

    • 5. Skills UX designer needs

    • 6. In House VS Freelance UX Designer

    • 7. Tools for UX Designers

    • 8. Conclusion

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About This Class

User Experience design is the process of designing products and experiences that are efficient, effective, and delightful for users. A UX designer understands the needs and goals of the user. They connect with users to understand what they really need from the product or experience. 


Hey designer, my name is Alex and in this class we will cover: 

  • What is UX design
  • What does UX designer do

  • Is UX the same as UI
  • Skills UX designer needs
  • In House VS Freelance UX Designer
  • Tools for UX designers

Since more and more devices are taking over our lives, UX design is becoming more and more important by the day and in this short class we will cover the basics so I look forward to see you in class. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Aleksandar Cucukovic

Improving lives, one pixel at a time.


For the last 10 years i have designed websites, products and apps for different companies, big and small.

With my wife i have started 3 startup companies and through the process met some amazing people from all over the world.

For the last five years i have created over 500 design products, improved the lives and workflows of over 100.000 designers from around the world.

Now my mission is to improve the lives of others, and to pass on my knowledge back to the community and to all those who want to learn about the amazing worlds of design and business.


Thank you for reading and have a creative day!


See full profile

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1. Class Intro: User experience design is the process of designing experiences which are effective, efficient, and delightful for users. As time goes on in world turns to digital experiences, UX design role is more and more crucial by the day, because UX designers are the ones who are defining the user's wants and needs and the best routes for the users to take to get to those experiences and products faster and more delightful. Hey designer, my name is Alex and welcome to this Skillshare class about UX designer basics and the digital products creator. And so far I hope created more than 500 digital design products. I am also a course creator and so far I have created overturned the different courses with over 50000 students, all about Adobe XD, UI, UX design, social media design and more. In this UX basics class, we're going to talk about what UX design is. What is the job of UX designer? What is the difference of the UI and UX design skills that good UX designer needs in house versus working as freelance design. And finally, what are some crucial tools that you should know how to use as a UX designer for this entire process. As you can tell from the title and the length of this class. This is just going to be the very basics of UX design. Because to learn UX design properly, all the things it can do, all the things it can cover. It will take you months. So if you're interested to learn about basics of UX design, I look forward to seeing you in class. 2. What is UX Design: User experience design is the process of designing experiences that are efficient, effective, and delightful for users. So in other words, you have to know who are you designing for? What are you designing in the first place, and which problems that does that product or service helps solve. So to know this, you have to conduct something which is called user experience research. And you have to understand who are your users, what are their needs, what are the ones? Because not all users are the same. So your job as a UX designer is to target those needs and to help solve those needs by UX design process. Because every project is different, every user is different and their needs vary from project to project. You have to adapt as a UX designer to those user needs. 3. What does UX designer do: Ux designer understands the needs and goals of the user, the connect with users to understand what they truly need from this product or experiences. Let's call user research, and it's the first stage in the process of UX design. The next stage is to clearly define what products needs and wants users have. So you can clearly define the product goals. And this leads into the ideation stage in which UX designers come up with potential solutions for the problems that the users face. Then comes the prototyping stage in which UX designers take their ideas and turn them into functional prototypes, which they then share it with stakeholders and other team members to just test and make sure that they actually work before they pushed them into production and before they push him into further testing with the users. After that comes the final stage which is testing where UX designers push their solutions to the users to make sure that they actually work and to make sure that they actually solve the problems that the user's face. The UX design process is never complete because when you actually test the product that you created as a UX designer, just Czar, they're further down the line, for example, six months or 12 months down the line, users needs are going to change. So therefore you have to improve that product or experiences according to those users needs. And UX designers are there to do that for the entire lifecycle of the product or service. They have to keep researching, they have to keep improving the product or service to meet the user's needs. Because as I said, user's needs and wants are constantly changing. Because in the rapid developing world that we live in today, those changes are required from time to time, for example, for some products, are those changes are required on monthly basis, which is really rare. But usually it's something like six months or a year. And you have to understand as a UX designer, what are those needs by conducting all of those researchers oral dose interviews. And you have to adapt the product or service to meet those new requirements and new needs that your users have. 4. Is UX the same as UI: Ui design or user interface design, is the process of designing experiences such as websites or mobile apps. It is at the later stage of UX design process, but equally as important because it's not just the part of UX design process, It's the crucial part of UX design process. You can have the best research profit content strategy. But if they're experienced isn't beautiful and readable, nobody would want to use it. Some UX designers go as far as paper wireframes and just stop there because their skill level has stopped off. But you can code in use paper wireframes. That's where UI designers step in. Turn those paper wireframes to turn those researchers and ideas into functional models, to functional prototypes sometimes even quote that users can actually use test, end and then UX designers in UI designers in conjunction can improve for further usability and for further testing and research. Ui designers don't need to know how to code, but it's important that they understand how the code works and how to structure their design for sharing with developers. There is also something called no code tools, which in today's day and age is really common inside the UI UX design sector. And those are the tools such as Webflow and Bravo Studio app, which are the tools which help you as a UI designer create all of those experiences. Enter them from static designs and prototypes into beautiful functioning websites or mobile apps. No-code tools are really great because you don't have to know how to code. But once again, it's really important that you understand how the code works. Hard to structure designs because it's going to be super simple then for you to either create those experiences into tools which I mentioned such as workflow or a browse Studio app, or to send those designs and to export them properly for your developers because this whole system needs to work as one. Otherwise it's just going to fall apart. Because once again, what's the point of view, beautifully executed research of all those client and user meetings. If that is not something which users would actually want to use on their devices such as laptops, mobile devices, tablets, and so much more. So that's where a UI design is crucial in this whole process because they aren't there to turn those ideas and put them into functional concepts more often than ever using something called no-code tools, which I just mentioned. Simply knowing how to structure a dose and dose designs into something which is called, for example, design system, which is then scalable later in the design process further down the line, for example, six months, 12 months, or even few years down the line. Because that design system is there to help them scale the product and to help them update the product as time goes by. Because you as a UI designer will be there in that company, for example, for, let's say two years. But what happens after you leave, after you switched companies, after you go work as a freelancer, somebody else has to fill in your shoes and has to continue where you left off. That's where these design systems or UI kits, for example, come in handy. And that's where UI designer as a job position is really crucial. Because once again, it's the key gap and the key bridge between UX designers as concept and research and then developers as people who put those concepts and research into development for the actual users to use. Ui design is not UX design, but it's the part of the design process in general, an equally important part, in my opinion. For that. 5. Skills UX designer needs: A good UX designers should have empathy to listen to their users and to understand their needs. When conducting user research, UX designers should know which questions to ask to better understand which problems to solve. And they have to understand how to handle the tools required to do those jobs because tools are many and we're going to cover them in one of the future lessons. But you have to understand which questions to ask to help other team members to help yourself solve that issue that your users face. Communication with users, but also other team members such as UI designers and developers, is the key to beautifully functioning design process. And that is one key skill that every good UX designers should have. Great UX designers also specialize in something which is called UX copywriting. Visual designers, sometimes even marketing to help facilitate the entire design process and to help bring more value to the team they're working. You don't have to have all of these skills which I just mentioned. And there are many, many, many other skills. But the more of them you have, the greater value you are going to bring to the team that you're part of. Or if you're working as a freelancer, the greater the chances are you're going to get bigger and more expensive projects to work on because you are going to be the crucial part of this team, because you possess all of these skills. Those skills come with time. So don't worry if you're just getting started and you don't have some of these skills or you don't understand what some of these things are, starts more than big, built from there and then upgrade your skills as the time goes by. 6. In House VS Freelance UX Designer: When you're working as a part of an agency, chances are you're going to just work as a UX designer. The bigger the company is, the bigger the chances that they have a dedicated copywriter, that they have dedicated research team, that they have dedicated UI designer or for example, developers. So you can focus on UX design itself and that you can focus on the entire process itself. And the greater the chances are that you're going to be internal part of that team because you can simply focus on what are your duties as a UX designer. This in turn, we bring goo good salary, but a limited one because you're going to be integral part of that design team, but you're simply going to work as a UX designer alone. But when you're working as a freelance designer, do more of these things. You know how to do. The greater value you're going to bring to the part of the team or the project you are going to work on. So therefore, you can command a bigger salary because of those reasons, you can, for example, take two or three big projects per year and then relax for the rest of the year. You don't have to work for the rest of the year, for example. Or you can take many, many smaller projects because of the skill set that you possess. Once again, the bigger the skill set you have, the greater the chances are you're going to be working on these big projects and you are going to bring the big value to these companies. And once again, the more of these values you can bring to the team you are in, the greater the chances are you're going to get big salary from these projects. It just depends of what you will act to do and where you want to be in your career. Some people like to work in an agency for years on end. Other people just like to do freelance. Some people like to do both, may be working in an agency and then work on freelance. On this side, it just depends on who you are, where you want to be in your life, and in your career. For example, some people like the stability of the agency because it keeps bringing costs and revenue. Are the pupil like to take the risk may be intakes, some bigger projects as freelance UX designers. Then, once again, also, it depends on your skill set, what you know how to do, how good are you in the job that you are doing? For example, in this case, UX designer. How good can you communicate with other team members, like I mentioned, for example, UI designers, developers and graphic designers, some cases marketing team. So it all depends of you, if you're just getting started, our true recommend to try and do both. Maybe start with freelance design just to understand what the client needs. Maybe you can go to platform such as Upwork or no NADH designs become fewer design projects here and there. And then simply understand what those clients actually need. Understand their users, understand the user's needs, and understand how to conduct proper user experience research. And then move on from there. Then maybe with that experienced move on to apply for a design agency job just to understand host, how is it like to be part of a physical team working with other people inside of that agency. Simply understand the pacing of working is sort of an agency working on one project at a time with multiple people at the same office at the same time. Maybe that's the good part for you. So my advice for you is try to do both and see where you find yourself in. And then never forget, you can always switch between these two from agency to thrillers and back to agency. It doesn't really matter. What matters here is to try and do both so that you can understand the both sides of a coin. 7. Tools for UX Designers: There are many different tools that you're going to use as a UX designer. So in this video, I'm just going to cover some basic ones. And also, as I mentioned in previous lessons, as time goes on, as your perfect your skills, you're going to encounter few of these doors and few other tools which do similar things. It's all up to you of the project or for users needs and what you really like to do and what you need to do. So make sure to do your research. And for these tools which I'm going to show you in this video, I'm going to create a PDF. We're just going to be attached in this class that you can download and you can simply click on those links to access them easily. So without any further ado, let's get started. So first tools we're going to cover are tools for UX research. Now some of these tools are premium and you have to pay for them. Mud majority of the stores have at least free trial so that you can test them out and see if they are a right fit for you. One recommendation I have for you is if you're just getting started, make sure to do your research on free tools and make sure to do it on foot. What I mean by that is you can use majority of these free tools such as Skype, such as Google Meet and things like that to conduct your user research and interviews, for example, endings like those. And make sure to always get paid up front for your projects. Especially if you have to pay for some of these tools because they are expensive, they can be really expensive down the line, especially more and more tools you add to your toolbox, It's going to be more and more expensive. So always, always, always make sure to get paid up front before you actually start using these tools. So as I mentioned, tools for UX research comes first and we have Teller books so you can understand your clients. So interactive UX bulky to start your next project with proper research, make sure to watch the video. Once again, links are going to be in the PDF, click them and access all of these tools. So you can customize the design process for your project needs. You can get this bile with unique interactive templates. So majority of these templates, stakeholder interview, user interview, and you can simply adapt all of these templates to your needs and to needs of your particular project. You have the data that you can analyze and create teams with tags. So you can tag, for example, sign-up errors. Sign up once sign-up needs onboarding, where do users get stuck? And all of these things. Next up we have UX tweak. So the only UX research platform you will need buffers are stores for improving usability of websites and apps from prototypes took production. So you can see usability testing, information architecture research, user behavior analytics. So once again, where users do get stuck, do they need help with something so you can do all of that research right inside of here. And then you can export that research to understand and analyze more. And for example, communicate with your team to understand better what they actually need. So only one solution to make data-driven decisions in your website design, you can organize your content to perfection so you can Card Sorting, do the car start into the tree testing, you can emphasize with your users. So you can do preference test 5 second test surveys, session recording and all of these things, and then analyze the data later to understand what your users truly need. And finally, we have something which is called failure. So basically all of these tools are really similar, do really similar job. And I hate these annoying pop-ups. So they have the platform, they have the solutions, they have the case studies, they have the resources. So you can learn how to use these tools and violent they have the pricing. So once again, intuitive CLI solutions to improve experiences. You can turn experienced excellence into a competitive advantage. So you can see all of these tools. So let's see platform. So you can use interactive surveys, SMS and email feedback, digital feedback. You can import feedback, contexts, Journey Mapping Team. So the majority of these tools, once again, if you're just getting started, you don't have to know what everything is. You just have to familiarize yourself with the bigger UX research. And the key here is, not all agencies, not all teams use these tools. Majority of big agencies do, but small agencies in teams don't because their projects are much smaller, needs of those users are much smaller. And finally, at the end, but crucially as important, the budgets for those projects are much smaller. So bigger projects are going to take all of these tools and all of these research, researchers because they have more users and those users have more needs and then smaller projects. So you have to understand that. Next up we have UX design tools for creating sitemaps and user flows. Sitemaps and user flows are really important and they are crucial part of UX design process. So here I'm going to show it just to tools. But once again, there are many, many, many other tools out there that do the same thing. So you can see how these tools look like right here. So you can create a sitemap, you can create a user flow, you can explore personas, you can create a customer journey maps. And finally, you can create wireframes, which is in progress for this particular platform called flow map. Once again, links are going to be in a PDF so you can easily check them out. So how does it work? Nicely, explained right here. So you can create a sitemap. You can see how it looks like here. You can build flowcharts. You can research users, you can play and customer journeys. You can manage content so that you can understand and upload files at page descriptions tax than discrete and lips. And finally, share with the client for feedback. So that's great. And then we have overflow. So you can create interactive user flow diagrams that tell a story. You can communicate your designs like never before. So you can turn your designs into beautiful user flows and you can see how it looks like right here. So a bit different from this website called floor map, is you can actually upload your designs here and connect them into flowcharts and then sharing those flowcharts with your clients. Because for example, some clients don't understand designs like these. They truly want designs like these. So depending on who your client is, who your teammates are, what their wants and needs are, how big the budget is, how big the timeline is, you will have to pick one or the other. So I'm just showing you these examples. Once again, links are going to be in a video. Be sure to check them out and see and understand what's right for you. Next up, we have tools for creating wireframes and prototypes. Balsamiq is the first tool. It's well-known tool. So you can do all of these things right here. You can interview all of these people. You can put them into these wireframes. And the whole point of Balsamiq is they're giving you these really basic templates. So if you're after this sort of thing, then you can use Balsamic. Let me quickly show you the product. You can see right here in background how it looks like. So there are giving you pre-prepared all of these basic elements which look like websites, which look like mobile apps, so you can quickly communicate your ideas with clients and stakeholders. But in my opinion, and what you can do is move up the steps and turn those ideas into more, more beautiful and feasible prototypes. So for that, I like to use tools like Adobe XD. I use it every single day. I love it. I dedicated my years in this business for Adobe existed because I truly believe that this tool is something great. Not everybody is going to agree with me. That's completely fine. That's why we have tools like Figma and we have tools like Sketch. But in my opinion, Adobe XD is the best because it's part of the Adobe family. What I mean by that is if you need to adjust some images and you can use Photoshop. If you need to create some illustrations, you can use Illustrator. If you need to edit some videos really quickly, you can use Premiere. If you have to create some effects, you can use After Effects. And all of these doors are part of one single family, which reduces the time of your switching between the apps, reduces the time of your learning. All of these new apps, it's all part of the same system. I have many classes and courses on. Adobe is nice, so make sure to check them out as well. If you want to learn in depth about Adobe XD, what it is, what it can do. But for now, I really like it and a real like to use it. But unlike Adobe XD, which is part of this big family, Figma and Sketch are separate companies and dedicated companies just to these tools. But that means is they're going to be more dedicated to their users. But these tools are never going to be as complete as something from Adobe family, for example, like Adobe XD. Because the teams who are behind these companies are much smaller than teams at Adobe, for example, who can then churn more bigger updates every single month, for example, like for Adobe, XD is the case. Then for a sketch which I know they are launching updates every single year while Adobe XD team makes updates every single month. So once again, I'm not trying to push any one of these stores because I don't have a horse in this race as they say. But I'm just telling you what I like to do. You can decide for yourself, for example, for some people, Adobe XD is not a solution. Figma is the solution. And for some people, sketch still is. In my opinion, Adobe XD, figma R2, best tools for the job right here. But you are the one who's going to make the final decision at the end of the day. Next up we have the tools for UX research and testing. And here we have usertesting.com, which is one of the best websites out there for this particular service. You can get a vivid firsthand view of what your customers are thinking and experience with customer experience narratives. So you can really dive deep into these tools. As I said, I'm not going to do that in this particular video. I'm just trying to show you these tools which are available to you so that you can further explore To matters to you and which tools matter to the particular project that you're working on. So here you can ask any question you can target, anyone you can engage and emphasize, you can discover and analyze and you can share insight. So they're basically covering this entire user testing grounds for you in this particular tool. Next up we have UX camps so you can deliver the perfect app experience. So once again, there are targeting app right here. It's the market leader in AP experienced analytics, empowering mobile teams with fast contextual and high-fidelity inside. So only one mobile app analytics. So if you're working on mobile projects, perhaps this is the right fit for you. Or if you're working on desktop and mobile projects, then perhaps this top piece right, fit for you. Once again, make sure to use the tools which are actually crucial to you. And once again, I'm going to repeat what I said at the beginning of this video. Made sure to get paid upfront because these tools can quickly add up as you add more and more of these tools. And before you start spending money on these tools, my top tip here is to try in them, to test them and see if they really do the job for you on this particular project. Don't tie yourself to a tool if it's not a good fit for you, make sure to test them, make sure to try them, and make sure to understand if they are truly required on that particular project or not. And finally, we have the tools for team collaboration. What we are right here is the slack, and it's one of the well-known tools out there. What you can do in Slack is you can create all sorts of different communities or you can create separate chats with separate people in your team. You can also use it for users. You can use a research, you can do some testing right here inside would dislike, but it's mainly a communication tool between teams and team meets. Next, what we have is for delivering, you can use something which is called sapling and simply and works well with the tools I mentioned previously, like for example, Adobe XD, Figma, and Sketch. So you can integrated natively, it's free to get started, but as you add more and more boards in it, as you add more and more into that file, then it's going to start costing money. The key point of Zeplin is to enable you to work with developers so you can easily share your designs with developers. They can then measure distances, padding margins, and things like those to be able to easily understand what they need to use inside of the code later, you can do this natively inside of Adobe XD and Figma. I'm not so sure about sketch, but some people really like to use the power of Zeplin because you can also leave comments here and there, which you can also do that in Adobe XD and in Figma. But once again, some people like to use Zeplin as well because they're either used to it or they have to then facilitate that code later in some kind of way. So once again, it's up to you to decide what you really want to do from these tools and what you really need to use. So as I mentioned few times throughout this video, make sure to check out a PDF. I'm going to leave all of the links which I mentioned inside of that PDF. Make sure to see which of these tools are right fit for you. Which of these tools are going to do the job for you? And once again, my kid tip here is don't rush and invest all of your money into these tools. If you're not going to use them, make sure to test them out. Make sure to understand what they do. Should to learn them here and there. Because when the project comes, you are aware of all of these tools which are going to help you on that particular project. But don't go out of your way and invest your money into the projects and into these tools that you are not going to use at that moment, make sure as you develop, as you grow, as you discover these tools to just use the tools that you actually need for your work and then evolved later during your career. And as these tools come along, make sure to explore all of them because it's really important, but don't rush and invest your money into all of them. 8. Conclusion: So there we go. We have reached the end of this class. I really hope you found some value in it and I really hope you understand some basics of UX design. To get started, make sure to check out some resources online. Make sure to check out some other schools which are dedicated to UX design because I just covered very, very basic stuff in this online class. If you're just getting started in this business, as I mentioned in one of the previous lessons, make sure to visit websites like Upwork or 99 designs to try and attract some clients. Dare make sure to understand their needs, make sure to understand their goals. Make sure to try to ask the right questions to truly understand who their users are and what they actually want from their products or service. Tried to do that for a while. And then if you want to apply for a job at an agency mixture to create some sort of a portfolio from the work that you accumulated on those platforms to apply to work in an agency. Because once again, the dynamic of working inside of an agency is quite different than if you're working as a freelancer. Then as you do that, make sure to perfect as time goes by, what that means is you always have to evolve. As a UX designer, you always have to learn new skills. New tools, follow new trends to understand what's new. And all of those things come with time. So you have to invest time. You cannot just start today and expect some great salary or whatever. You have to invest a lot of your time years down the road to understand how the industry works, how to conduct proper user research, for example, how to ask the right questions, where to find your users, which tools are right for you? Which tools are right fit for each particular projects or all of those things come with time. Anytime also changes the market into trends. What users want, what they don't want, the devices they're using. So all of these things change with time. You have to invest a lot of your time into research as a UX designer, but also into research as to what's popular, what's trending, what's going to change further down the line in all of these things. So once again, thank you for watching this class. I really hope you found some value in it. Check out my other classes here and until next time. Take care.