Who are you designing for, if not for the user? Many inexperienced designers will tend to do what they would like to see on a website, but, as they gain experience, they will start to understand that they need to walk a mile in the user’s shoes to be able to deliver the best ‘user experience’ design. But there are so many types of users, how could you know?
What’s a persona?
Personas are used in user-centred activities such as UX, design, marketing etc. A persona is a fictional character created to represent different types of users. Although it is depicted as a single person, this is a rendition, synthesised from observation of other people.
Here’s an example from timmcevoycreative.com:
Let’s say you name your persona Sarah. In the simplest terms, using a persona means asking yourself „Would Sarah like this?” or „Would Sarah relate to this?” etc.
How to create a persona?
1. First, you need to observe and gather as much information as you can. There are several ways to do this, ranging from web questionnaires to interviewing people.
2. Find patterns and divide the users into groups.
3. Based on the groups created and patterns found, create archetypical models of those groups.