I’ve worked in development for over a decade and I am still fascinated by how many companies don’t think that great user experience and prototyping is the right way to go. Working with companies such as Visa, O2 and The Partners, to name few, I have had the opportunity to share my knowledge and passion for UX and UI with many talented people to build cutting-edge products.

People often say that prototyping only serves to aid the understanding of the flow of a product. However, I firmly believe that highly realistic and specific prototypes can cut out uncertainty, aid the reduction of costs and timeframe.
Frequently I’ve seen amazing product ideas diluted because of poor management decisions that can result in rushing the process and not gaining the benefit of a full prototype cycle. This can often have a worse impact than not prototyping at all.

A common question I am asked is:
‘Is a more realistic prototype the right solution for my product?’
The answer is both Yes and ‘No’.
Why?

If the product is simple, perhaps prototyping is not the right way to go. Here at Digital Evolution Lab our ethos is never try to up-sell our services just to get more business. Our focus is on providing the right solution – just like creative agencies, we want our services to deliver.

Equally, if your product has specific features, the answer to prototyping is often ‘Yes’.

To elaborate, many companies still adopt wire-framing or visual mock-ups with simple hotspots to emulate workflows. If prototypes are built with a greater degree of ‘realistic feel’ (for example a real drop down menu, input fields, select dropdown lists, real accordions, logins with real credentials etc), users won’t be left guessing.

Don’t leave your user guessing

Personal interpretation of what might happen by clicking on features may vary from individual to individual. With intensive user testing on small and larger scale plus different versions of the prototype based on user feedbacks, the product gets narrowed down to its best version before going into final development.
Over the years we have noticed that this translates into cheaper development cost.

Where are the savings?

As we explain in the workflow chart on our website, prototypes for mid & large projects are a must when you have specific features to build.
Intensive user testing, UX design and prototyping will save final development time, cost and reduce margin of error. One UX designer and Front-End developer will cost you less than, for example, four full stack developers who might have to re-factor their code because of major flaws in the process.
Not only will you find yourself back to square one, but the internet will be flooded by bad comments and reviews. It’s not nice to have your product smashed by bad feedback!

Final thoughts

If you don’t think prototyping can help your business, think twice. UX, testing and prototyping have always been a must for every project and nowadays even more. If you don’t care about your users, how do you expect them to care about you?

What are we doing about that?

At Digital Evolution Lab we are planning to fill a gap in the market very soon. We are creating a tool powerful enough to help branding, design, marketing and PR agencies in their day-to-day job.

Watch this space!!!