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The power of design – why design is important to every industry

08 August 2018

In a crowded marketplace where products and services are seeking to get noticed, design is an effective way to gain attention. However, there is more to design than just aesthetics. It refers not only to how things look, but also how things work.


New definition of design


Companies such as Apple and Uber understand the importance of design and studies suggest that businesses that identify design as a value differentiator attain greater market share. When Netflix redesigned their interface in 2011, user engagement grew significantly. Other companies realize the power of design and started investing more heavily in the practice. IBM, for instance tripled their design staff to grow the business division due to its growing potential. In several industries, there are untapped opportunities for business benefits led by design-focused thinking. Although design is not a new phenomenon, it’s importance is growing due to several reasons.

Also read: Tech Transformation: The Time is Now


how user interface design impacts user engagement


Impact of design on businesses. Growth of design teams in companies


1. Shift to mobile devices
Presenting information on smaller handheld devices leads to less “real estate space”. This means that companies must allow tasks to be carried out on a smaller space without compromising on quality, which requires clever design. Companies must therefore place emphasis on mobile design to ensure they are not missing out on market share.

2. Craft an end-to-end customer experience
Consumer habits and preferences are changing. For instance, customers would typically browse items in a store before purchasing. In recent times, however, 49% of customers walk into a store with a clear idea of what they wish to purchase as they have already browsed items online. With the evolving customer interaction, design plays a key role in creating a smooth experience by creating consistency and efficient communication at every step of the way. Mapping out customer journey and conducting human-centered design research to discover improvement options is therefore something that businesses should look into.

49% of customers walk into a store with a clear idea of what they wish to purchase as they have already browsed items online Click To Tweet


Customer's retail shopping pattern / habit


Largest population segment in U.S. by 2019


3. Growth in Millennial population
By 2019, Millennials are expected to surpass Baby Boomers as the largest living population in America. The Middle East is known for having a young population and Millennials constitute a majority of the region’s consumer base. To cater to this tech-savvy generation with short attention spans, design is crucial. Studies find that design plays a role in most major decisions for Millennials. Products therefore need to be designed to be eye-catching and function smoothly.


Impact of design on millennials


4. Key innovation driver
Innovation is increasingly important in today’s fast paced world. From technology to healthcare, new inventions are transforming traditional businesses across industries. Design determines how the end-user perceives and interacts with a company’s innovative ideas. It commercializes back-end technology by creating an interface or a product that is user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing.

Read next: How can the restaurant industry keep up with the changing demands of millennials?