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The customer is central to every digital experience we deliver at Extractable. The very structure of our agency is built with UX and strategy at our core. In order to deliver measurable results, we need to understand what motivates our clients’ customers to act or interact with their brand—and we design, optimize, and measure from there. We start with embarking on primary research to deliver the best-informed true user recommendations and actionable personas, a better mapping of customer journeys for our clients, and a faster speed to market through prototyping.
Speaking with real customers is essential to understanding the nuance of why they your brand. We base our personas on real primary research. Rapid proto-personas (made up personas) have long been an industry standard, but the process can lead to incorrect assumptions and ineffective experiences.
Even if only a handful of customers are available, say in a B2B setting, we speak with as many as we can get our hands on. Personas should capture the essence of your audience by being as unique as they are. Our research methodology and rigor around persona development brings a degree of reality that makes the personas relatable and sparks rich discussion.
We also look for key relationships. Nearly every purchase decision—from the simplest consumer product to the most complex B2B sale—involves more than one customer. For example, if you’re selling a checking account—what features does your target audience value the most? If you’re choosing a savings account, it’s likely that the rates are a top priority meaning an elegant user experience should allow you to intuitively see the impact of saving over time. Being able to recognize these relationships in the persona allows us to surface important motivations in a realistic fashion.
We start prototyping from day one. Our agile process means UX, visual design, and technology are closely knitted together, and everyone from strategy to analytics is in the room from the first day. Rather than UX delivering pages of annotations to wireframes and talking through interactions, and then handing off the approved wireframes down the line—our visual designers and developers are in the loop immediately. Clients can see working prototypes to provide feedback immediately, so decisions around usage, or even sharing how quickly an animated element might move, is decided early.
We believe in uniforms. Not a black mock turtleneck, but the same principle—focusing on the work and what is important, rather than losing time on non-essential decisions. We have standardized all of our UX and visual design tools (Adobe Creative Suite, Sketch, Invision, Axure). It’s a “behind the curtain” process question clients and agencies alike rarely think to ask aloud. However, it can have a major impact on efficiency.
By standardizing our design tools all of our team members hand off project elements quickly, back and forth, without a lot of translation or time wasted hunting around for elements. This has an enormous impact on our agility, timelines, functionality and ultimately our creativity. It allows us to instead focus on what we do best—delivering the best designed digital products and experiences to you.