Product Design vs UX Design: How They are Different

Product Design vs UX Design: How They are Different


What is a product?

Something (for instance, a good or any service) that is marketed or sold as an asset, or something that is just produced. This is appropriate for physical products and services but this definition is not accurate when it comes to interactive design especially for the digital industry.

In this regard, an exact definition would be that this type of product is a digital tool that is constantly updated in order to improve the experience. Want to know the real difference between the product design vs UX design challenge? You are at the right place.


Product Design vs UX Design


Along with businesses and individuals going digital, confusion arises between product design vs UX design. Accordingly, many people tried to explain the process. 

Product Design vs UX Design

Some people think they are the same while product design covers more elements.   UX design takes care only of the users’ needs while product design also considers business requirements. This is not an accurate approach. So, what is the right path?


Product Design Process


Product design has appeared longer before UX design did. The responsibilities of a product design company are to consider possible risks and challenges and design solutions that will meet the requirements or fit the possible problems that may arise during the product development process.

Product Design vs UX Design

Yet, a product designer is a specialist like a full-stack who may organize the overall process, even including the user interface and user experience.

Providing the best possible solutions, these specialists are those who guard the process and take care of the smooth process.

They are those who get an app or website design inspiration and work on it, later supporting the development team and making sure that it is the most relevant, cost-effective, and functional product possible. And also, which will satisfy the end-users.

Are you impatient about starting your product design now? Do not miss the opportunity. Do it now!


UX Design Process


UX design is related to the process when the design teams work on creating a product that provides meaningful and relevant experiences. Human-centered design is in focus. This covers the design of different elements up to the entire process of acquiring and integrating the product, including aspects of branding, design, usability, and functionality.


What is the Difference?


There is always a misunderstanding about if the UX and product design are the same or they are different. A great number of people, however, find some points to focus on and consider the difference. They think that these are two types of specialists whose responsibilities also differ.

Product designers:

  • Focus on long term strategy
  • Help achieve the core business goals
  • Hold a more holistic approach to design

What is the Difference

User Experience designers:

  • Are focused on specific user needs
  • Execute design thinking process
  • Design for positive customer experience


What is the Similarity?


In spite of the differences mentioned above, we think that there is much in common between product and UX design. Sometimes they even become the same. And here are the reasons.


Reason #1 The Industry is Changing Fast


Product and UX industries are very fast-paced and there are a lot of changes happening all the time. I mean that the wax design role has been around for only a couple of decades. So, if you are hung up on a particular title or particular role, you might be missing out on some very important developments.


Reason #2 The Final Business Goal Should Always Be in Your Mind


So, even though the “official” description of product designer versus UX designer says that the UX designer should not care about the business objective and should only focus on the user, that is the most surefire way to never get promoted and always be seen as an executor rather than a strategic partner.

The Final Business Goal Should Always Be in Your Mind

As a UX designer, it is always important to keep the end business goal in mind. Frankly, creating a cool design is not that hard. Any designer can do that regardless of their seniority.

What is more challenging, however, is being mindful of what your business is trying to achieve, or what your adjacent teams are working on.

So, the next time you find yourself getting carried away in a project, stop and think critically if your professional web design, feasible for the web dev team to implement, is legal.

Going to be on board with that is what actually is going to help your company achieve the bigger business goal. 


Reason #3 The Job Ads Do not Reflect Differences


When there are lots of companies having separate job descriptions for UX and Product designers but there are also more that require a UX and product designer in one. But you do not have to take a word for it.

Some companies that require one specialist as a UX and product designer want this specialist

  • to provide hands-on delivery of UX assets across all channels, such as concepts, wireframes, prototypes, and visual designs with specific tools;

The Job Ads Do not Reflect Differences

  • ensure a simple and fun experience for users as they move through the platform;
  • work with overarching design patterns to ensure a consistent user and brand experience;
  • facilitate the ideation, coordination, and perform user interviews and other research methods;
  • contribute to building and refining the design system.

So, this already sounds like a mixture of the two roles together


Reason #4 Titles are a Vanity Thing


Surely, titles should serve a purpose and provide a clear overview of your skills, seniority, and what your job description is but that is just not the case of the UX world anymore.

You could be a wax designer, a product designer, a conversation designer, a hat customer product evangelist, a head of customer experience designs, or any other ambiguous UX title that does not really tell much about the job you do.

So, instead of focusing on what your title means we suggest you focusing on skills you want to perfect on the day-to-day assignments and tasks you want to be doing and on really selecting which career path you want to follow.

Do you want to become a specialist and really drill down into the technical skills or if you want to go a managerial route and manage the design team because those two career paths require really different skill sets but that is a different topic.

Titles are a Vanity Thing

So, to wrap this up, the role will largely be defined by the company you will be working for. Make sure to check the facts of the jobs thoroughly and focus on the skills and responsibilities that a role has instead of getting hung up on the title.


To Sum Up


Considering all the above-mentioned points, we come to the point that the product design and UX design are mainly about the same. In any case, both are related to achieving the final business goal which depends on the great user experience.

So, even when people explain that it is the product design that is responsible to achieve the end business goals and UX design is just about user satisfaction and comfort, stop them for a moment and ask a question.

How do businesses achieve their goals?

The right answer is through customer satisfaction.

And what do you need to satisfy the customers?

Of course, provide a great user experience and make their flow smooth and comfortable with your product.


Vera Mirzoyan

Article by: Vera Mirzoyan
Published on: August 30, 2021
Last updated on: September 06, 2021