Five Ways UX Writers Reduce Risk in the Digital Product Development Process

At a Glance

User experience (UX) writers are an integral part of a digital product development team. As a UX writer, you might find it challenging to take the time to validate your work and implement human insights into the development process. This article will show how to incorporate UserTesting into the digital product development design process as a UX writer, helping your team reduce risk.


Ensure consistency of language

Empathize with customers

Write for all

Aligned to business strategy

Manage user mental loads

Ensure consistency of language

Consistent language includes feature descriptions but also naming conventions, person, tense, punctuation, etc. While you’re collaborating with the digital product development team, provide input about what features are named so there isn’t confusion for the customer.

Does the language in your digital product help customers easily navigate their way around and do what they want/need to? Use the Messaging comprehension template to gather insights to see and hear your customer's reactions to messaging and positioning.

test_plan_messaging_comprehension.png

With human insights gathered from your test, you can:

  • Listen carefully to the words that users choose to describe their expectations of a process
  • Ensure that your design and language align with their understanding of that process (mental model).
  • Make sure the creative idea generation is aligned with personas, and how competitors talk about similar features, etc. 
  • Support clear messaging for working with your release manager or consistent descriptions for features and functions. 
  • Align with customer education to ensure documentation and product language support each other.

Empathize with customers 

UX writers use mental models to empathize with how customers expect things to work, especially around their thought processes and how something works in the real world. 

For example, think about how customers will use features. Do they find it easy to understand what your feature is or does and how it relates to them? If they will view buttons, will they need further description of what they do? Use a template like Mobile app evaluation to test ease of use.

test_plan_mobile_app_evaluation.png

Write for all

Accessibility is important to customers. Use a usability test to find out how copy and features, like HTML elements, work with a screen reader. Just make sure you create a screener question or add the Other requirements filter to let contributors know they’ll need to use a screen reader for your test.

mobile_app_navigation.png

Align to business strategy

Consider your organization’s wider business strategy. Perhaps your company was originally targeting enterprise customers, but with your new product, you’re going to be targeting a wider range of customers. One of your company’s principles may be to “use simple language” so they are able to accommodate more customers.

Our Messaging comparison template will help you gather human insights when considering two messaging options.

This is also a great time to share these human insights with key stakeholders. UX writers often do this through storytelling, writing up findings in a way that can help the team engage and make informed decisions.

mobile_app_comparison.png

Manage user mental loads

A lot of teams that bring in UX writers at the end of the process find problems only surface when an experience is tested (e.g. users don't understand the difference between two similar features). UX writers need to collaborate through the entire digital product development process to think about managing cognitive load. 

Cognitive load includes:

  • Purpose of the copy
  • Copy being clear and concise 
  • Eliminating unnecessary steps
  • Minimizing visual distractions
  • Helping customers make decisions, by using:
    • Categories
    • Collapsible menus
    • Descriptions and examples to explain options

Use the Test website usability template to see how customers complete tasks.

QA_Test_website_usability.png

Learn More

Need more information? Read these related articles.

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