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How to design your digital product for success

We live in an ever evolving digital world. As digital technology spreads across the landscape, it becomes increasingly difficult to design digital products that can compete in the modern marketplace. Still, there is a way to design your digital product for success. Whether that product is a website, an app or an online community, you can increase the chance of its success by following certain guidelines.
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The first step is to develop quality documentation.  What do we mean by quality?  We mean documentation that goes beyond simply addressing user requirements and asks and answers the question of how can users best be served.  This includes planning the design in such a way that it can be easily improved over its lifetime.  The design should be such that the product remains relevant and can be updated as digital technology advances.

The modern digital landscape is based on effective designs that can be rapidly shipped and easily updated.  The emphasis is now on user experience testing and user interface, as well as adaptability.

Digital technology represents a fundamental shift in human culture.  For the first time, ideas are becoming the foundation of products that are rapidly developed and quickly marketed.  The line from idea to shipping a product is becoming shorter and shorter.  This requires big picture thinking and the ability to not just envision the completed product, but to comprehend how that product will survive in the marketplace and evolve into the future.

Good design is more than just a snazzy interface.  A good design has utility and longevity.  It can be modified without crashing and smoothly accomplishes its functions.  The best way to achieve this is to stay in communication with stakeholders so that problems can come to light and solutions can be offered prior to release.  Quality design comes from a holistic approach that is based on establishing connections between people, all the way from the design team to the end users.

The single most important step in designing your digital product for success is to realize that there are real people who must use that product in the real world and they should not be forced to cope with a bad design.  Ultimately, it comes down to empathizing with the end user and developing those testing scenarios that best reflect the reality that users live in.  If you can do this, then you will have a very good chance of designing a digital product that will be successful in the marketplace, now and in the future.

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