UX/UI Design Agency
UX and UI play crucial roles in the design and development of any digital product – be it a website, app, game, etc. – ensuring each element is built with real users in mind. Both disciplines are the bread and butter of building digital spaces that customers find easy to use and love to return to.
At Embryo, we are an award-winning digital marketing agency that is focused on creating unique and innovative websites that apply UX/UI best practices. We work with clients big and small, building custom sites that meet user needs, generate results, and capture the attention of audiences looking to engage.
UX vs. UI Design: What’s the Difference?
You may have heard these terms used interchangeably but, although they work harmoniously in any website development process and inform each other, there are significant differences between the two.
At Embryo, we place great importance on both UX and UI to deliver an exceptional final product that is aesthetically appealing, user-friendly, communicates your brand values and captures your brand’s image.
Looking to redesign your website or, just getting started, build a new one from scratch with an expert web design team at the helm? Let’s talk.
First up… User Experience (UX) Design
UX design, or User Experience design, is a human-first approach to product design. Breaking this down, the ‘user experience’ aspect refers to a user’s interaction with a product or service.
A UX designer is focused primarily on the user, ensuring that they can successfully use your product/service (or simply your website) with as much ease as possible. As the job title makes clear, their goal is to optimise how the user experiences your offering.
The role of the UX designer is to conduct the necessary user research, including task analysis within a user flow, along with usability testing, to understand how the user feels when interacting with your product/services. The aim is to create a simple, efficient and enjoyable experience by considering as many aspects of the customer journey during the development stage.
At Embryo, we apply UX best practices to our website builds. In this way, we build sites that customers can navigate better, meaning there are fewer obstacles to them converting from casual browsers to paying customers.
- During both development and site review, we’ll test:
- Is the experience straightforward or clunky?
- Does the user interaction feel intuitive or is it confusing?
- Is the customer journey seamless or disjointed?
- Is the user able to complete their desired tasks easily or is it a struggle?
User testing is a critical stage before any website (or product/service) launch – a process in which real users test the interface and functions of a website or mobile application.
The test is performed under realistic conditions to get accurate results, and user feedback will highlight whether the website is fit for purpose or needs final tweaks before officially going live.
Now, to Compare… User Interface (UI) Design
UI design, or User Interface design, relates to the overall look or style of a product. In other words, it focuses on the aesthetic design of an app or website and involves the creation of various visual touchpoints in the customer journey. Based on the principles of usability and likeability, the aim of the game is to produce user interfaces that are captivating and easy to use.
- Whether it’s a website or mobile app design, the UI design process may include the design or selection of:
- Colour palettes
- Unique imagery
- Audio components
UI designers, therefore, look after the visual design aspect of a digital product and are responsible for making design decisions that align with your business requirements as well as ticking all the boxes for user experience.
Beyond the visuals, technical considerations also play a role in UI optimisation.
Responsive design is a major player here. In a world where the mobile reigns supreme, ensuring your website responds to various screen sizes while maintaining a high-quality image is critical to a positive user experience. With it almost being an even split – that’s 50.48% of web traffic coming from mobile devices – it’s surprising how many business owners don’t check to see whether their website plays nicely across different devices.
With desktop computers, laptops, tablets and mobile phones being available in many different dimensions, the key is flexibility. Our Design team uses flexible layouts, images, and CSS (cascading style sheet) to ensure your website perfectly fits any screen.
Our UX/UI Design Process
As an award-winning digital marketing agency that specialises in web design and development, we have years of experience working with a wide range of businesses to launch successful projects and produce cutting-edge graphic design. (Fancy a peek? Take a look at our case studies to see our Design team in action).
It goes without saying, but good web design is fundamental to your brand’s success in the online space.
Customers are your number-one critic and will decide within seconds whether they want to engage with your website over the many others just a click away. First impressions are everything and a beautiful design goes a long way in retaining your audience’s attention. At Embryo, we’ll ensure your website looks fantastic, is designed with both user perspectives and digital marketing channels in mind, and converts well.
All aspects of our web design process, from research and competitor analysis to the testing and execution stage, are carefully considered to ensure the entire project runs smoothly. We work closely with you to ensure the end product meets all your business objectives and appeals to your target market, as well as staying up to date with the latest design principles.
Step 1: Research
During the research stage, we will work with you to identify specific goals, project requirements, and style guides that will inform our design thinking.
Our clients come to us with either a clear vision in mind: we’ll assign the right people to make their precise vision a reality; or simply a rough idea: our award-winning team has experience with what works/doesn’t and can mock-up and pitch options that we could pursue from scratch.
At this stage, we’ll be looking to absorb your brand, learning everything about your products/services and goals for future growth.
We’ll discuss your targets for:
- Capturing the attention of your target market
- Conversion rate
- Website traffic
- Branding (or rebranding)
- Brand story and messaging
- Cross-channel opportunities to generate leads and engagement
- Core USPs and preferred call to actions (CTAs)
With these goals in mind, we will then determine the scope of the project, factoring in how many pages and features will be required along with a clear delivery timeline.
Our team of graphic designers will gather data and other useful insights to inform their design process. Although all research will be tailored to your specific design project, the UX and UI aspects will differ slightly.
UX designers will be focused on the functionality of the end product, reviewing components such as usability, HCI, or human-computer interaction, accessibility, structuring and what makes the most effective navigation. Through the analysis of trends and patterns, the UX designer can develop user personas and build a picture of who is likely to be using the end product and their needs.
While the user experience is also crucial to the research conducted by the UI designers, their focus is on the overall concept, aesthetic design, target group and interaction. For both elements of digital design, the expectations of the user are paramount.
We’ll also use competitor research to find website features that align with the initial concept, using these as a guide to creating a better UI design solution and an enhanced user experience for your audience.
Step 2: Design
Once we have agreed on an initial concept, it’s time to get designing!
The first step of the design phase is to create a sitemap of the website’s overall structure, taking into account the organisation and content of the web pages and how they relate to each other. Wireframes will then be created to dictate the design elements of each page. We’ll also help you decide the main services to promote and which specific features to integrate.
Sitemaps will not only ensure that your website is user-friendly from a functional perspective, but are also critical from an SEO perspective. Essentially, there are two types of sitemaps: visual and XML. The former showcases the various sections of your website while the latter is for a search engine to crawl and digest your website’s content.
As a leading Manchester-based SEO agency, our team will create your sitemap, ensuring it is fully optimised for maximum performance.
When it comes to designing the visual elements of your website, our team follows established design standards whilst ensuring your branding guidelines are fulfilled. We’ll select colour palettes that compliment your brand and an eye-catching accent colour for important features, such as calls-to-action, buttons and hyperlinks. Throughout the creative process, consistency is key and we will ensure everything from the layout to fonts and styles is sleek and uniform.
Choosing a colour palette for any website is a lot more complicated than you may think, and it’s not just about looking pretty. Colour plays an important role in influencing a user’s impression of your brand and psychologically impacting the way they interact with your website. In a nutshell, you want to select colours that represent your brand while also triggering an emotional response from your target customers – get it right and you’ll reap the rewards.
We understand that the design stage is critical to the success of any web project. Our team will keep you informed at every step of the process, with regular project updates in weekly calls, emails and/or face-to-face meetings – whatever works for you!
You will have complete project visibility and will see the designs at multiple stages, starting with the homepage and followed by any bespoke internal pages.
Communication is our number-one priority, and our clients benefit from a dedicated project manager who acts as a bridge between them and our Development team. This is a collaborative process and we want to make sure that the website is fully signed off from a design perspective before we move on to the build & testing phase.
Step 3: Build and Testing
Once you are happy with the design, our team of expert developers will take the design mockup and build a fully-functioning, interactive and user-friendly website – with your goals in mind.
At Embryo, we understand that each brand is unique and our bespoke and flexible approach to web development means that your website can fulfil your individual requirements, as well as maximising customer satisfaction and boosting your business’s growth.
We achieve this by integrating CMS systems and adapting them for each project. We predominantly develop our websites with WordPress which, based on PHP, offers an open source and continuously improving platform.
Have a bespoke web feature in mind? Our talented team is able to build pretty much any kind of tool you need, from calculators to responsive questionnaires.
Content creation is another important aspect of the web development process, establishing your brand’s message and representing your product or service in an engaging way. Our team of content marketing experts specialises in producing well-crafted, creative and SEO-optimised content that aligns with your brand’s TOV and captures the attention of your target audience.
Combining effective content marketing with key visual elements, our team will also ensure that the typographic hierarchy of each webpage is both reader-focused and optimal for SEO performance. Your website’s content should be organised in an easily digestible way, with headings and subheadings HTML coded. This will ensure the content is user-friendly and, once live, boost search engine rankings and drive traffic to your website.
Before launch, we’ll test your website’s performance on various different devices, checking and double-checking that each interface and function is working perfectly and is suitable for use.
UX plays a critical role in this stage of the development process. Our priority is to ensure the final product is easy to use, accessible and ranks on Google.
What Can a UI/UX Design Agency Do for You?
Designing, developing, and launching a website can be time consuming and expensive. Websites and apps are complex but critical products that can truly have an impact on your brand’s growth and digital marketing performance.
A UI/UX design agency will not only deliver a professional, functioning and impactful website for your business but will prioritise your users, provide valuable experiences, and therefore ensure longevity for your brand.
Want to set your business apart, increase brand recognition, and leave a lasting impression on your customers? Smart web development and a dedicated team of designers that know what they are doing will make all the difference – it really is that simple! With a user-first approach, our websites are clean, informative, secure and well-designed.
Identify Weak Points in Sales Funnels and User Journeys
Think about how much time you spend online, whether it’s the weekly food shop, ordering that last-minute present or just having a browse. With the digital space continuously expanding and user journeys becoming increasingly more complex, customers are looking for simplicity, efficiency and authenticity.
Putting it bluntly, a positive user experience is dictated by a seamless user journey. A customer journey map is a great way of tracing the multiple points between the user and the website that need to be designed.
A good UX design, which prioritises the customer, is able to identify any weak points in the sales funnel and create a website that is:
- Easy to navigate
- Intuitive and logical to the user
- Carefully considered with effective calls-to-action
- Unique and engaging
- Clearly communicates your brand’s story through well-crafted and well-organised content
In a nutshell, UX insights are critical in analysing patterns of behaviour and understanding user expectations. This contributes to the creation of a website that is not only aesthetically pleasing but manages to keep your users moving through the funnel, from their initial interaction with your brand to a purchase decision and their return as a loyal customer.
And so the cycle continues…
Trial New Ideas and Improve Conversion Rates with A/B Testing
Innovative web design is fuelled by two things – a team of forward-thinking experts and thorough usability testing.
A/B testing is an effective way to compare two or more variations and identify which is a development-ready design. The web design favoured by real users will usually indicate the strongest approach, giving an accurate reflection of performance and therefore improving conversion rates for the final product.
There are several considerations to ensure this process runs smoothly and is successful:
- Create a strong hypothesis
- Ensure your test ideas are feasible and align with wider business goals
- Prioritise the user experience
As a results-led agency with years of experience, we use data-driven insights to fuel new ideas that can boost your digital presence, appeal to your target customers and are conducive to business success.
User Interface (UI) Design Turns Wireframes and Prototypes into Final Designs
User interface design is invaluable to the development process. The UI is part of the front-end development of a website and the point at which the user interacts with and determines their main impression of your brand.
We all know that a badly designed, sluggish or complicated website can be incredibly frustrating. Put simply, a bad user experience will result in poor brand performance and the loss of a customer. It’s therefore crucial to tackle any issues at the prototype phase before moving into the final design.
The trick is to create strong wireframes that prioritise the user and strike the perfect balance between sleek, original graphic design and a simple user flow that directs the customer towards a conversion.
The job of the UI designer is to then bring those wireframes to life and create prototypes that accommodate brand requirements whilst focusing on the overall user experience.
There are several ways that user interface design can benefit your project.
Although templates are a good starting point, a UI designer can bring a creative edge to your website and elevate your brand above industry competitors.
With a strong focus on brand awareness, UI also establishes a design guideline to ensure consistency across the final site and improve your recognisability within the digital space.
Finally, effective UI design can trigger an emotional reaction from the user, influencing their consumer behaviour and pushing them towards a purchase decision.
User Experience (UX) Copywriting That Inspires Visitors to Become Your Loyal Customers
Your content needs to convert. Plain and simple.
At Embryo, we know great copywriting inside and out. At its core, the content on your website should represent your brand in a way that is useful and entertaining to the user – combining visual appeal and relevant information in a way that addresses your audience’s needs.
To truly engage a user, you need to have a good understanding of who they are and what they want. That’s where the UX research and user personas come in – these constructed archetypal users that we create through extensive research, representative of the goals and characteristics of your target audience, act as the foundation of any successful web content.
As well as ensuring that the tone and messaging style are appropriate for your customer base, our dedicated Content Marketing team will produce concise, structured and reader-friendly copy that will play a big role in the overall user experience.
During the build, our team will work with you to create a content strategy that aligns with your wider business goals.
Why Doesn’t Your Website Convert?
Getting traffic to your website is only half the picture and convincing your users to invest in your brand can be tricky. This is usually down to a combination of your website’s aesthetics, functionality and navigation, and your digital marketing efforts. Luckily for you, we specialise in both!
Conversion rate is an important measurement of success for any online business owner and there are several factors to consider:
- Do you have a good understanding of your target audience?
- You might be acquiring a significant amount of traffic, but is it the right type?
- Does your website have a straightforward user flow or is it clunky and problematic?
- How compelling is your offering?
- Is your website exciting or just another URL?
- How complex is your user interface?
- Are your landing pages fully optimised, with clear calls-to-action that are on-brand?
- Does your content accurately represent your brand and is it engaging?
Ready to get started?
At Embryo, we combine UI/UX expertise with talented designers and a deep understanding of effective digital marketing. Start your growth journey with us today.