1. An article or substance that is manufactured or refined for sale.
What is a product? Until very recently, the term ‘product’ was used only in relation to something material that could be found in a shelf.
Today, in a ever-evolving world, it is coming to mean digital products as well. Apps and websites are modern products.
2. An object or service created as a result of a process that serves a need or satisfies a want.
What I have come to realize throughout the years is that looking only into the business goals numbers can be dangerous when it comes to product design. We should not be designing for numbers.
Instead, we should be designing backed up by data through user research, customer interviews, surveys, behaviour patterns, psychology, etc. This data should be completely unbiased and comprehensive enough to give insight into customers’ preferences.
Data is always a great way to support many design decisions. But as data cannot empathise or feel, designers should be data-driven paired with empathy.
The industry needs leaders who think as humans and for humans, Who put empathy first and create inclusion into the work they help to create.
Having a comprehensive approach to product design is not straightforward. We are dealing with people influenced by a spectrum of factors.
Leaders in product design are those who are willing to pull on a thread in order to uncover where an experience might fail, cause harm, or otherwise negatively influence real people.
To improve the experience with the product you are creating, you should observe customers early on as they interact with you product. Test early and test often before you release your product into the market.
Design is not pixels, is not colours nor drop shadows. Is not about if it is pretty. Its not about tools nor beliefs.
Design is like a bridge that connects complexity into meaning. It’s actually about solving problems and creating a connection.
Design is not an end but a means to an end. Design is invisible and should be platform-agnostically. Design is human, and should be about creating something that people actually need and want to use further driving engagement with the brand.
So, what is product design then?
It is the process of starting by defining people’s real problems, identifying a market opportunity, validating the solution with real users and developing the best solution for that problem.