If you've not heard of the term 'user experience' the clue's in the title. It's about creating a great experience for the users of your website. And that's less about making it look aesthetically pleasing as it is making it easy to use.
The secret to a good user experience (often shortened to UX) is not to make users have to think about what they're doing: it should come naturally to them to find what they're looking for and interact with your site. In a web design agency, user experience may be the responsibility of the team as a whole or a specific 'user experience designer'. There are even entire firms that specialise in user experience consultancy.
In this post we've grouped together the best articles, interviews and tips features on Creative Bloq on the subject of user experience. Whatever your level of expertise, you're bound to find something to help your understanding and improve your technique. And we'll keep coming back to the post and updating it, so make sure you keep it bookmarked!
Introduction to UX
Clearleft's Andy Budd explains how modern UX is more about sketches and prototypes than reams of documentation.
"Design" is often confused with "decoration", but it's actually about responding to problems, argues Steve Fisher of Yellow Pencil.
Matt Cynamon of General Assembly drills down five reasons why you should get into UX design - or brush up on your skills.
UX tips and advice
User experience is often considered a dark art. Here Richard Shepherd argues that a healthy curiosity in human nature helps us create delightful sites and apps.
Irene Pereyra rounds up 10 top tips to help you deliver an amazing interactive user experience.
Users decide quickly if they trust an interface based on its appearance. Keep them on your side by following Jason Cranford Teague's UX tips.
UX architect and web developer Rachel Guthrie-Maynard offers the benefit of her experience on digital projects.
UX for startups
A positive user experience can transform your business. Here Laurence McCahill, co-founder of Spook Studio, comes up with 10 essential tips to put you on the right track for a better customer experience.
UXPin CEO and seasoned UX designer Marcin Treder guides you through the fundamentals of user experience design.
UXPin CEO Marcin Treder explains his techniques for carrying out low-cost user testing that will make a world of difference to your UX design.
Marcin Treder of UXPin explains how to weave UX considerations into the visual design process and create an efficient workflow.
UXPin CEO Marcin Treder explains why launching a new feature isn't a cause to celebrate, but an opportunity to optimise your product.
Marcin Treder of UXPin explains how to back up the user experience design process in a startup with a lean process of measuring the right metrics.
Stuart Pill from TH_NK guides you through how to collect objective insights using ethnographic research.
User research should be conducted by all team members throughout a project's lifecycle, says Emma Boulton.
User experience consultant Chui Chui Tan talks to Martin Cooper about international user research and how to do it.
Chris Rourke of User Vision on designing for a global audience.
Many agencies don't offer UX testing as standard to their clients. That's a mistake, says Mark Stringer of AHOY.
User experience design pioneer Rolf Molich explains where quantitative usability testing is going wrong, and how the usability industry needs to mature.
TH_NK's senior experience designers Stuart Pill and Gavin Wye present 10 key takeaways from 50 hours of usability testing.
Instead of developing features based on untested hypotheses, ideas should be tested as early as possible, says Dan Frost of 3EV.
Laurence McCahill, design lead and co-founder of Spook Studio, spills the beans on the Lean Startup and Lean UX movements, which bring a groundbreaking approach to product development, and what it means for designers, developers and clients.
User experience designer Jeff Gothelf talks about lean UX processes, designing by committee and breaking down discipline silos within companies.
UX writing is a key part of your content strategy, says Ben Barone-Nugent. But what is it?
Tom Dougherty explains how creating customer experience maps can enhance the UX design process.
Sandi Wassmer on using digital personas for UX design.
According to Jason Fried, people prefer messy but cosy sites like Amazon and eBay to slick online experiences. What does our panel of experts think?
Jakob Nielsen's usability tests find the flat design trend threatens tablet usability due to unclear UI element functions.
Paul Wheatley argues that banks' online services need to step up to meet customer expectations.
Clearleft MD argues that visual designers should not feel diminished.
Zoltán Gócza on the dangers of believing in instant internet success stories.
Michal Pasternak, partner (user experience) at HUGE, explains how the agency developed a training program for prospective interaction designers and how it changed the company.
Harry Brignull shames sites into ditching manipulative design.
Meet the UX experts
If you want to know about the state of the user experience profession today, Andy Budd is the man to ask. Clearleft's MD talks to Tom May about the rise in demand for UX skills, the lack of good practitioners and abuse of the term 'Lean UX'.
He's been working in the field of usability since 1978 – before the term was ever associated with computers. Speaker, author and CEO Jared Spool chats to Tom May about how to research your users and make your sites and apps intuitive.
User experience strategist Stephanie Troeth chats with Tanya Combrinck about being a web jack-of-all-trades and bettering the world with UX.
Happy Cog's user experience director Kevin M Hoffman answers your questions on selling UX to clients, making meetings work, and whether designers should know how to code.
Ryan Singer of 37signals tells Richard Shepherd how empathy is essential to great user experience.
Seeking user experience-related tips, updates and inspiration? Head to Twitter and follow these UX-centric accounts.