Many who deal with the design of user interfaces, with usability or user experience, are
familiar with the following problem: They have recognized the need for user research as
part of their creative process and suggest to their client that they apply established
methods, such as user analyses, interviews, personas, workshops, etc.. But many
customers do not see the need and argue against it as follows:
"We don't have time for this, let's do it later"
"We don't have a budget for that right now"
"We already know our customers and the target group, don't we?"
User Research often leads to acceleration of the project process, saving time and money -
Why? Empirical validation accelerates many development decisions, saving time-consuming
and costly revisions. Additionally, resource-saving approaches can be used. Often, many
valuable insights can be gained from the user's perspective with little effort.
"After all, we know best what our users want"
Unfortunately, this argument is used very often. In practice, one often encounters sales
staff or product managers who, on the basis of competitive analyses or selective
customer feedback, think they want to know exactly what users from the target group
want, need, and find good and helpful.
Those responsible for the project often do not look at the situation with an open mind
and view identified problems as uncritical. They often generalize the context and
exclude consideration of the needs, requirements as well as capabilities of the users.
Of course, users are not the solution finders for identified usability deficits - but
they themselves know best which functions and processes they need to perform their tasks
efficiently. This helps the experts understand problems in detail and find a suitable
You are not your user!
For this reason, user research should help us identify the real needs of users and
eliminate our own prejudices and misconceptions that might otherwise have a detrimental
effect on the success of the product.
Note: The more intuitive a product or software is, the more effective and
efficient it is in use. User satisfaction increases and the user experience has a
positive impact on the user experience. A beautiful design alone is not enough if the
user encounters obstacles in fulfilling his goal. These can be avoided in advance with
the help of user research - saving time and money!