Startups are a very involved subject in the new digital business atmosphere and analysts and business practitioners alike see a lot they can learn from studying the dynamics of a startup’s evolution to an enterprise company. However, they often overlook the user experience best practices which can also be learned from startups. Enterprise businesses become embroiled in their own increasingly over-complicated shock and awe tactics with UX, with flashy, gimmicky interfaces, overly stylized art and a lot of showmanship that wastes resources in a digital environment. The lily is being gilded in a perpetually compounding loop of outshining one’s neighborת daily. So, let’s learn from these user experience best practices, see how to break out of this cycle of self-destruction, and approach design and UX anew.
#1 – Simplicity
Startups usually build their interface with a minimalistic, but, if possible, attractive appearance and layout. It’s designed to make as much sense as possible, without being ugly and utilitarian. This reduces the consumption of resources, and brings a very basic and pure form of translated output from the engine to the user, and gives them a flexible but simple layer through which to respond. At the same time, while basic, these designs can be made to look good. Minimalism can be attractive when negative space is utilized properly. Often, this is done by deflecting negative space into the “dimension” of color, where various complimenting shades and basic smooth shapes to controls work to form crisp, pleasant-to-look-at interfaces.
#2 – Accessibility
Startups know they need a market and recognition, so they’re not afraid to tackle a deployment platform that’s accessible to the widest array of people. Currently, this means turning to VM frameworks like AIR or Java, or going SaaS in order to accommodate this. Many will sneer at the use of these frameworks, and these are many people who should be ignored. VM and SaaS are the future anyhow, so you’re just ahead of the curve using it.
SaaS will be the mainstream for business software and authoring software, where media rich software such as games and multimedia will be handled by more powerful local VM – at least until latency is nonexistent and cloud can game. As a UX designer, we can learn to swallow our misbegotten pride and design around general platforms like this, and not kowtow to the elitist view of using frameworks.
#3 – Personalization and Configuration
Finally, one of the user experience best practices that enterprises tend to forget in their glamour fest is personalization and configuration on a basic but limited level. This is often the best way to go, giving the user some ability to show and hide elements that they don’t need. It can also entail minor aesthetic adjustments, shortcut keys and other sundries, presented in a logical and easy to modify order. Designing to account for this kind of semi-malleability is a wise decision to make. This also makes the design adaptive and able to be used on more disparate platforms such as mobile, PC, laptop and even set top boxes, widening the market and creating a unified, independent user base. This is diversification at its most powerful. Startups do this so that they again can reach the widest market starting out.
So, these are just three of the user experience best practices that we immediately see when we look at a startup. Now, if we watch them for a long time, how much do you want to bet they could revolutionize UX?