Double diamond methodology for user experience design

Andreína Medina Yáquer

UX/UI Designer @ Kushki

December 07, 2020

5 min read

Today, most companies seek customer loyalty and to generate conversion through the sale of their products in online stores. This positioning depends on many factors; one of them is the design of user interfaces, which covers the visual aspect of a platform (being attractive), as its usability and usefulness, thus the importance of a UX designer.

In this article, I will tell you about what user experience design is, the methodology we use in Kushki, the challenges we have faced in the process, and the reason why we choose to apply the double diamond methodology.

The easiest way to explain what a UX Designer or User Experience Designer does, is by sharing an example, something that you have probably lived and become familiar with:

Imagine that you are on a website that sells shoes, intending to buy a pair of sneakers with specific features. You already have what you want, so when heading to the sneakers section, you start searching the “filter” button to facilitate your search, but you do not find it anywhere. After seeing pages and pages of the digital catalog, you finally find what you were looking for and go to the pay section. At that time, you discover an extensive payment form that you start filling out discouraged, while you think this is taking much longer time and effort than you thought. Eventually, you surrender and leave the website, and prefer to buy your shoes in another store, or simply to forget about it completely. But, why did you quit? Because your frustration with the process was stronger than your wishes to buy the shoes, that is, the user experience was unsatisfactory.

And you ask yourself, what does this have to do with the UX designer? It is simple: The UX designer has the mission of converting the search and purchase process into a rewarding experience, that provides all accessibility elements with a high degree of practicality, for the user to do his/her activities on the website, in a fluid and seamless way, almost “without being aware of it”; this is what we call user experience.

In other words, we define user experience design as the development and improvement process of quality interaction between human and computer, and all the aspects of a digital or physical product or service. The challenge is based on creating a useful, user-friendly product, that provides value and acceptance in its use in the shortest time possible.

A designer not only has participation in the creation of a visual product, but performs a practical process of research, ideation, and finally, the development of prototypes that allow testing results. To achieve a high-quality UX design, there must be a perfect fusion of multi-disciplinary services.

The Double Diamond methodology at Kushki

Double Diamond Kushki

As a team, we apply various rituals of agile methodologies to manage projects with greater efficiency, and focus on the added value of our digital solutions. For this, we use the steps of the Double Diamond framework as follows:

Discover: We investigate which improvement opportunities are. In this step, we validate, with real users, which are their concerns. We ask our interviewees to give us a tour of their day-to-day activities to detect the problem, and we also certify the project’s scope.

Define: With the results of the previous point, an information organization process begins, with the purpose of understanding and mapping which are the required points that can solve the raised problem. In this phase, flow charts and lists of requirements are made, among other tools, which are necessary for the next stage.

Develop: In this point, we focus on the visual construction of the product or feature, considering the logic and pain points identified before, that is, prototyping. We also make validations with experts, so that we can ensure that we can make the delivery with a perfect finish.

Deliver: It consists of a demonstration of the properties of the features that are proposed in the prototype.

Important challenges that we face in the development of the experience

As a user experience design team, we worry about our solutions being reliable, useful, and friendly. As a team, we have identified three constant and fundamental challenges to consider in each solution we develop:

Make the user feel safe. Not only do we have the best security certifications, but we have also implemented other measures that allow the user to have greater control and understanding in the process. For example, a preview of the configurations they wish to make, alert messages, action confirmation, information edition, etc. The objective is to help users to make good decisions, making them feel safe in the process.

Speak in their language. Unfriendly and incomprehensible language can hinder the understanding of transaction processing tools. “Preauthorization and capture,” “dispersion,” “chargeback,” among others, are terms that are not commonly used, and not from the domain of people. This is why the way we communicate with our customers, is a constant and important challenge that we face as a team. To solve these possible understanding difficulties, we have numerous indications, notes and tooltips in the Customer Console, as well as the knowledge base. It is essential to talk to the user in a clear, direct and simple to understand language.

Information saturation. It is very easy to confuse the user when it comes to financial transactions. The user needs to have key and concise information at hand. For this, it is essential to know him/her and his/her needs, to be able to propose solutions with an information architecture that covers his/her pain points, reducing the cognitive burden of our user.

Why do we choose this methodology?

One of the characteristics that we value more from this framework, is the possibility of iteration within each diamond, with the objective of approaching each time to the ideal “as if.” The intention is to have a clear problem when both diamonds converge, resulting in a positive effort-time ratio. The main benefits that we find in this methodology are:

It fosters communication between teams. Goes through consultations with experts and other relevant areas. It applies for small, medium, and large projects. The framework can be implemented to find solutions to all kinds of problems. It is adaptable according to the project. It encourages us to understand which the correct methods and activities are to address a problem or opportunity. Clarity in processes. It allows defining the phases with greater accuracy throughout the development of a UX project.

Finally, trust and efficiency in developed technologies are really important for the fintech world. By themselves, financial transactions consist of complex processes that require a high level of accuracy and processing speed. Our objective is that, this is a transparent, fast and secure process for the end-user. As a team, we constantly face new challenges that lead us to convert a cumbersome process into one that can develop naturally and intuitively, so we must consider experience design as a global concept that affects the entire interaction chain between brand and customer alike.

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