What is UI design?

UI design or user interface design is the design of website or application pages/functional components (or a wide range of other things such as computers, appliances, machines, mobile communication devices etc) with the focus on the user's experience and interaction.

The goal of user interface design is to make the user's interaction as simple and efficient as possible, in terms of accomplishing user goals (so offering high levels of usability).

Good user interface design facilitates finishing the task at hand without drawing unnecessary attention to the wider aspects of the interface as a whole. So removing (or at the very least de-emphasising) aspects on the interface that are not crucial to task completion is an important step to ensure that uneccessary clutter is stripped away from the interface, therefore helping the user to concentrate on the task at hand.

Visual design is generally utilized to optimise and support overall user experience of a given UI and the true magic of the UI design process skillfully balances technical functionality and visual elements to create a system that is not only operational but also usable and adaptable to changing user needs.

Next steps

See 'UX terminology' navigation (located below if viewing this page on your phone or tablet) for my perspective on other UX terminology.

Interested in learning more about UX?
Receive my free UX insights & career guidance by email to help you on your journey:

Still got a question about UX? Please get in touch

Updated: 26 Aug 2015
Share this page