Monday, October 20, 2008

Selling UX

An effective strategy for selling UX ...

"At some point in your career, you’ll be called upon to sell UX to someone in your organization. You’ve probably already done it. Perhaps you’ll need to justify what you do in an organization or industry that’s just beginning to adopt UX methods or sell UX to secure your position within an organization or get future projects. So, what do you need to know to help you sell UX? What challenges might you face?

This article examines what works and what does not work well when selling UX within an organization, identifies barriers you might encounter to the adoption of UX methods in your organization, and discusses how to package and present UX to stakeholders. In this article, we’ll try to avoid just being prescriptive. Rather, we’ll pose questions along the way, regarding what has worked well for you. Please share your thoughts with us, so we can learn from your experience, too. We hope this article promotes some interesting discussion. As industry’s adoption of UX broadens and more of us find ourselves in situations where we need to sell UX, we need to be prepared to do so effectively.
Selling by Not Selling

Let’s start with a little quiz we’ve used in some of our presentations to stakeholders: What search engine do you use? Show of hands…

* Who uses Lycos?
* Who uses Google?
* Who uses Ask?
* Who uses Excite?

We bet most of you answered Google. Now ask yourself this: Why do you use Google? What do you like about using Google? What do your friends and family like about using Google? Do you remember how you first found out about Google?

Thinking… Thinking… Thinking… Got your answers? Great!

We’ve gone through this exercise many times, with many different groups, in many organizations. Your answers probably include a mix of some of those we’ve heard before:

* It’s easy to use.
* It’s fast.
* It’s usable.
* It has a nice, simple home page.
* It gives me what I want.
* It’s accurate and finds results quickly.
* It’s focused and does not get too far away from its core value—and that’s search."    (Continued via UXmatters, Daniel Szuc, Paul J. Sherman, and John S. Rhodes)    [Usability Resources]

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