Recently, members from the Zion & Zion team traveled to the windy city to attend seven straight days of user experience training by Nielsen Norman Group (NN/g), one of the world’s top UX research and training firms. The conference consisted of seven full-day, immersive classes which covered topics in user experience design.

The Courses

Between the five Zion & Zion employees that attended this seven-day conference, we were able to cover a lot of ground and further our knowledge in the principles of user experience. Together, we completed the following courses: …

 

Design thinking is a new, hot topic in the marketing industry that is an excellent tool for stirring creativity and innovation. In a nutshell, design thinking is a human-centered approach to problem solving and innovation. To learn more about the entire design thinking process, you can read our article d.Signing My Way Through San Francisco.

For a human-centered approach, one of the key components requires you to understand the people for whom you are trying to solve a problem. In order to do so,…

 
Conducting a user test may seem simple at first—you ask a few questions and observe the participant, right? Not quite. As user experience strategists and designers, understanding our users is one of, if not the, most important pieces in the user experience (UX) puzzle. It can also be one of the most challenging. Everyone is different. People think differently. People act differently. And most importantly in UX, people use websites (apps, software, etc.) differently. That’s why user testing is so crucial. It allows us to observe users as they interact with our (or our client’s) website. The benefits of user testing are incomparable to the benefits of other forms of research, and when paired together with those other forms of research, can result in truly powerful insights.
 

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is an awesome tool that many websites use. CSS describes how elements should be rendered, and thanks to it, we can produce awesome, colorful, intuitive, and easy to understand websites.

In this article, I am going to talk about some CSS properties that can be helpful when developing a website that requires specific styling, or styling otherwise known as custom handmade styling. There are a lot of premade libraries out there that you can use to add certain classes to div tags or other types of containers, however they don’t always let you create exactly what…

 
Scaling from desktop to mobile presents unique challenges. Much of this difficulty lies in the fact that we need to provide a consistent experience, no matter the device. Constraints like device width and varying input types contribute to this challenge. Even with these responsive hurdles, it is possible to provide a seamless experience across devices. So, here we will outline responsive solutions for common web components. At this point you may be asking yourself why we are considering scaling from desktop to mobile? Why are we not following the mobile first mentality that is so commonplace today? While our team does encourage and practice mobile first, the reality is that we are receiving wireframes and design mockups for desktop*. We have to use our best judgment for how these common web components, like carousels and maps, scale and function.
 
How I Got Into This Industry

After graduating from Arizona State University with a B.S. in Marketing, like so many in my generation, I wasn’t sure what to do next. It wasn’t clear how I was going to take my degree plus my knowledge and turn it into a career. I figured with a marketing background I should do sales, so I did that for some time. Unfortunately, I realized that while I was good at it and could make a great living, it wasn’t what I was passionate about. I needed to find something where I would wake up…

 
Information architecture, or IA, is used to create the structure of a website or mobile application. In a perfect world, the IA of your website would give your user the context needed to know where they are and where their desired information is located in relation to their current position. But before your IA can come anywhere close to this ideal scenario, you must first understand and know how to apply the conventions and standards of information architecture. Only after you have an understanding of these foundational tools can you develop and execute good IA for your website or mobile application.
 

“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it.”

H.E. Luccock

Halford E. Luccock’s quote so elegantly describes how the beauty of success is only magnified by the collaboration of many, rather the efforts of one. Collaboration has been the cornerstone of many achievements, both ancient and modern, from the mysteries of the Great Pyramids to the miracle return of the U.S. Apollo 13 mission back to earth. However, it doesn’t take a grandiose goal for collaboration to play a pivotal and successful role in your efforts. Surely, we’ve all collaborated to one extent or…