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Scaling a Startup: A UX Perspective

Scaling a Startup: A UX Perspective

SaaS product
5 min

Let’s say your startup has reached some stability in its growth. You generate steady profits, gathered a loyal audience, and set up all the company’s internal processes. What comes next?

Well, you probably don’t want to stop on that. If so, you likely face a dilemma: to scale your business or not? And most importantly: how can you do it? These questions frequently raise uncertainty in the startup sector, considering the risks and money involved.

One of the relatively safe ways to scale a company is to work on your UX strategy. Some stats say that every dollar invested in user experience will return you $10 to $100 in the future. So, give UX design a try for your startup growth.

"Every dollar invested in user experience will return you $10 to $100 in the future."

Today, Arounda will tell you how to scale a startup. We’ll discuss the role of UX and UI design for business development and provide practical tips on successful scaling. Our team can share numerous insights with you, having an extensive background in FinTech, SaaS, and other startups.

UX/UI Design’s Role in a Startup’s Success

UX/UI is the primary point of user interaction with your startup project. Your business’s success depends significantly on how this interaction will feel: will it be smooth, intuitive, and consistent or, on the contrary, complex and confusing?

Most likely, you want to make life easier for your users. It will result in a larger audience, higher profits, an improved image of your brand, and even more.

If you don’t pay enough attention to your user interface and experience, you will potentially face difficulties. Just take a look at some data from Hubspot:

  • 88% of customers are less likely to return to a website with a poor user experience.
  • 90% of users abandon a mobile app because of its unsatisfactory performance.

According to the same study, about 94% of first impressions of a digital product are based solely on its design. Also, 75% of users judge the credibility of products based only on their aesthetics.

Thus, it definitely makes sense to pay attention to UX and UI for startup growth. It’s because the design is integral to both your digital product and your business as a whole.

How to Scale a Startup with UX/UI Design

Scaling is a natural process for any business that does not want to fail. The question is when and how exactly a startup should expand.

You risk failing and losing money if you scale your product design too soon. On the other hand, if your startup product is experiencing stagnation, that’s also not a good thing.

So, let’s get to the main point: how to scale UX UI for business’ success. We have prepared several effective strategies for you.

Adopt Design Thinking Framework

Startups often fail to scale their products because they forget to validate their ideas. It’s what the design thinking strategy exists for. Let’s look at it in more detail.

Design thinking methodology consists of several simple steps to create a user-oriented product. These stages are as follows:

  1. Empathize. This step involves a thorough study of your typical users. You must understand their needs and pain and even anticipate their thoughts and feelings.
  2. Define. In this step, you use the information you’ve gathered about your target audience to describe the opportunities for scaling your product.
  3. Ideate. At this stage, your team directly finds the most effective solutions for your product. It’s also when you validate all your ideas.
  4. Prototype. This phase involves the creation of a design prototype.
  5. Test. Here you show a ready-made solution to your audience and wait for feedback.

In the end, you will be able to come up with the final version of the product design, tested on real users.

Try Lean UX

Lean UX is a design strategy derived from the Lean startup methodology. Its goal is to reduce expenses and develop the most effective design solutions. This approach is based on creating an MVP (minimum viable product) to test your ideas in practice.

The Lean UX strategy consists of the following points:

  • Research and ideation. Here you study the market and target audience and devise conceptual solutions based on your findings.
  • Wireframes and prototypes. Next, you visualize your ideas by creating prototypes and wireframes.
  • Hypotheses. You also make assumptions about the benefits of your product to end users. Then these hypotheses need to be tested in practice.
  • A/B testing. You verify your assumptions by A/B testing, experimenting with two or more versions of the same variable (for example, different button colors).
  • Usability testing. It would help if you also researched how easy and convenient it is to use your digital product.
  • User feedback and interviews. Another thing you should do as part of Lean UX is to communicate with your audience to understand their needs better.

Scaling Your UX Team

Another startup growth stage you’ll deal with is expanding your design team. It is usually necessary after implementing new UX/UI solutions and rolling them out to the market.

Team expansion is required to support your scaled product properly. If you hire a sufficient number of employees, you will be able to respond promptly to any issues or user requests. Also, remember that the wrong team is one of the top reasons startups fail.

How do you know you need to expand your team? And how many design specialists do you need to hire? Here are some tips:

Consider Your Work Process

Research how the design team worked before you started scaling UX. If you previously only had one UX/UI specialist, likely, he won’t be able to handle all the tasks on his own once you expand.

Outline the Scope of Your Project

Determine the scope of your new project to understand how many additional specialists you need to hire. To do this, make a detailed list of all tasks related to UX/UI procedures.

As a rule, hiring one designer for four or five developers is enough. Nevertheless, your needs may vary. Also, consider engaging part-time workers, freelancers, or seasoned professionals.

Establish a Collaborative Process

Let’s say you were a small startup with a team of five designers. Now that you’ve grown and your staff has also increased, you need to establish a process for employee collaboration. It’s necessary for the smooth and timely execution of tasks and to eliminate any confusion.

To streamline the design department’s work process, you can develop a set of procedures and algorithms for teamwork. It would help if you also familiarized your employees with them.

Arounda’s Experience with Startup Products

Arounda has extensive experience working with startups. During more than five years in the tech market, we have helped over 15 new businesses expand from scratch. Our startup design agency has a particularly profound background in FinTech, SaaS, and crypto.

Our team provides a wide range of services for startup scaling. Here are some of them:

  • Strategy. We carefully analyze your requirements and vision and, based on this, offer effective solutions to scale startup.
  • Business analysis and research. Our experts study your business goals and conduct market and target audience research to highlight your product’s strengths and make it a market leader.
  • UX audit. Based on previous research, we additionally conduct a UX audit. With this, we offer top-notch concepts to scale your product.
  • UX design for startups. We conduct user experience research and create the information architecture of your digital product.
  • UI design for startups. We develop wireframes and prototypes, test them among users, and then roll out the final version of the design.

We provided our scaling services to the startup SageExpress. It is an AI-driven data tool that can help find insights from big data sets. Our team, in particular, developed the product strategy, delivered UX/UI design, and created the brand identity for this application.

With our help, SageExpress could raise $700M in Series D Funding and does not plan to stop there.

Check out our other startup projects following the link to our portfolio.

Final Thoughts

At some point, every startup needs growth. It’s an inevitable and integral process that can bring significant success if implemented right.

Reconsidering your UX and UI is one of the most secure, low-cost, and effective ways to scale a startup. In some sense, a business cannot grow without expanding its design processes. Similarly, startups need to scale their design teams when the volume of UX/UI tasks increases.

If you feel it’s time for your company to grow, do it through UX and UI. We hope that today’s guide will help you with this. Arounda has an extensive design team experienced in startup scaling and can grow your product as well.

If you need specialists who will take on these duties, drop us a line.


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