User-Centered Design or UCD is important for creating digital products on Mobile, because it helps creators understand the fragmented contexts involved. Many of us overlook these methods, because we work in a pressure cooker, where there isn’t enough time, budget, or resources to go that extra mile.
It Doesn’t Have to Be Expensive
Here’s what makes Guerrilla-style UCD perfect for this: it’s cheap, fast, and effective, if not exactly perfect. Prototyping and light-weight user testing are great ways to inject some understanding into the process of creating digital products.
It’s About Understanding People and Their Contexts
The added benefit of taking a user-centered approach, even Guerrilla-style, is that product teams can get a better understanding of the people we’re designing and building for. It’s important for us to know who they are, but it’s perhaps more helpful to be sensitive to the multi-layered contexts in which they’ll be using what we make. By understanding people’s contexts, our experience comes closer to theirs, and our products better fit their needs.
So, Let’s Get Started
My friend Wouter Sluis-Thiescheffer and I gave a talk about Guerrilla-style UCD for Mobile some time ago and gave some workshops on the topic. Here are our slides; feel free to leave a comment and tell me what you think!