You've got an idea or an objective, and you've probably already taken a few steps towards execution. Yet especially at this early stage, it can be extremely valuable to get somebody involved who has a broad knowledge of business, as well as a deep understanding of interactive media and their technical impact.
After all, this stage is decisive of all that comes next. A stage at which you don't want to miss any opportunities. Rather, you want to ask, and answer, as many questions as possible.
Before venturing into the design stage, it's imperative to be specific about what's going to be developed. Documenting the feature set means closing the loop with regards to the functionality, allowing us to identify and resolve any flaws in the concept. This process produces a set of user stories: short narratives of what various end users should be able to achieve using the product.
At this stage, I often recommend keeping it small: to reduce the concept to its bare minimum, allowing us to focus on achieving the primary objective of its users. This way, any lessons learned in the coming stages, can be put to use when expanding the product later.
3. Interaction design
A high quality product is effective and pleasant to use. Zero friction, maximum joy. The interaction design will make the difference between a so-so experience and a great experience. This stage will decide if users will keep returning, after coming in to kicking the tires a few times.
At this stage, aesthetics, colors and brands are explicitly left out. The objective of the interaction design is to establish a natural and pleasant flow in using the product. Offering the relevant choices at the right moment - not making the user having to hesitate. If executed well, this stage will distinguish your product from its competition.
4. Visual design
Once the right user flow has been established, it's important that the product's look and feel match your brand and company values, and / or the topic and objective of your product.
This is not only about typography and color, but also about attitude. Is this a serious application, that should convey a sense of security and reliability? Or is it a jolly, optimistic endeavour that should be about having fun? A quick inquiry into these values, and if applicable, those of your brand, will give us a good starting point for achieving a great visual design.
During development, we can agree on a number of intermediate deliveries, allowing you to keep tabs on the progress.
When development has completed, we together enter a test phase that allows us to perfect the product and squash any bugs.
This is the process. Interested?