Chapter 10. The Right Amount of Visual Design

In this chapter:

  • Learn how much visual design you really need.

  • Understand how visual design can affect the usability of your product.

  • Learn some tricks for getting a good enough visual design without spending a fortune on an expensive designer.

We’ve spent a lot of time talking about design, but you’ll notice that I haven’t really brought up the one thing that most people consider to be “design.” In this chapter, we’ll finally talk about visual design and how it relates to the user experience of your product.

If one more person confuses visual design and interaction design, I’m going to cry. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked people about their UX strategy, and they’ve said, “Oh, we have someone who knows Photoshop.”

Let’s go over this one more time for the folks who are still confused: Interaction design and visual design are not interchangeable. Visual design is how something looks. Interaction design is how something works.

Visual design is a part of general user experience design, but user experience design doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with visual design.

Let’s look at a few examples:

  • The exact copy that is shown on a button is a UX question.

  • The color of a button and whether it has a gradient is a visual design question.

  • How many steps a checkout flow has and which pieces of the flow go on which pages are UX questions.

  • The font sizes and colors on the form labels are visual design questions.

As you can imagine, the color of ...

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