User Interface Design (UI) vs. User Experience Design (UX)

website designer using ui or ux

Both User Experience Design (UX Design) and User Interface Design (UI Design) are crucial elements to a product and it is essential that they work closely together. However, despite their professional relationship, these two play very unique roles and are quite different. In this regard, they refer to very different parts of the design disciple and process. Where User Interface Design is closer to graphic design, User Experience is a more analytical and technical field. However, the responsibilities in UI design are somewhat more complex than those in graphic design.

Today, more employers are expecting UX designers to also have UI design skills. Having a workable knowledge of both gives you an undeniable edge regarding employment. Here are some of the differences between User Experience Design and User Interface Design.


User Experience Design can be defined as the process of enhancing loyalty and customer satisfaction through the pleasure that is provided in the interaction between the consumer and the product, improving the usability and ease of use. User Interface Design (an older and more practiced field) can be hard to define and misinterpreted.

UX design focuses on the optimization of a product for both enjoyable and effective use. UI design is its complement: the feel and look, the interactivity and presentation of a product.


To simply put it, UI design makes interfaces beautiful while UX design makes interfaces useful. When you create a useful product, it meets a need that is not being met in the market already. UX design means generally developing a product that will be valuable to your targeted customer niche. UI implements a visual hierarchy, serving as a guide to users and simplifying the process of meeting objectives


While UI makes emotional connections, UX helps users accomplish goals. Potential customers visit your site with a goal in mind; UX attempts to figure out what is important to them. On the other hand, UI is the personality of your interface. It makes a personal connection with your potential customers until they are hooked. Customers are more likely to make a conversion if your site’s interface rewards them with a positive emotion.


When you decide to build an application or product, UX design and research is usually the first step. This is because UX designers handle much of the research that will invalidate or validate initial product ideas as well as guide the product’s development. Once your product’s prototype has gone through a number of iterations and is largely finalized, this is where UI design comes in to work on the visual design and micro-interactions.