In 2003 Nokia designed the strangest looking phone, Nokia 7600 which looked like a teardrop. This phone had a standard size screen for that time but figuring out how to hold this phone or fit into your pocket was a great labyrinth. Single-handed texting on this phone was out of the question. Plus it had excessive weight with a very poor display. No doubt this product was a huge flop. Through the years Nokia has lost its market and this can be credited to designing such inconvenient handsets to some extent. Bad designs hurt your business. Maybe you don’t see the effects right away but in the long run, you will realize that you are losing customers. If the customer does not know how to use your product they will find an alternative to it. If your designers are not prototyping and testing their design that leads to bug fixes in the development phase or even worse in production which cost 10 times or 100 time more respectively.

What Constitutes a Good Design?

A good design should be four things

  1. Functional – the design should solve the given problem
  2. Intuitive – the design should not confuse the user. Ease of use is important
  3. Aesthetic – beautification of your design is necessary so that it does not put off the user. Beautiful objects fascinate and grasp user attention
  4. Long-Lasting – designs should be durable so that if required more could be built on top of it and not throw away with changing trend

Avoid bad design by following these basic rules:

  1. Your users are already accustomed to certain ways, don’t deviate from the usual design unless you are making their life easier. As we say in the design terminology:
    “Designer’s model of a product should align with the mental model of their target user”
  2. Always test your products and ideas before getting it into production. Technology has made it so much easier now, tools like can help you in user and usability testing of your product with real-time users. Compare designs with AB preference tests, get the first impression of your design with the first glance test and many other like click tests and questionnaire tests. Early feedback can help you improve your designs in a more cost-effective way. Fail early and fail often, that is the golden rule for delivering a quality product.
  3. Boil it down to your target users. Different people have different tastes and your design may not necessarily cater to the masses of people. Don’t ask people already associated with the product to test, take unbiased opinions, a fresh set of eyes can tell you about the obvious things that you may have missed.

I think, we all can surely come to a conclusion that the cost of delivering a bad design is much more than the cost of having a good designer on board.

Need  a consult or a quote? Contact Laura Sauter  617.780.6485