Trusted answers to developer questions
Trusted Answers to Developer Questions

Related Tags

design
ui/ux
communitycreator

What is empathy mapping in user experience?

ACHONWA ALVAN

Grokking Modern System Design Interview for Engineers & Managers

Ace your System Design Interview and take your career to the next level. Learn to handle the design of applications like Netflix, Quora, Facebook, Uber, and many more in a 45-min interview. Learn the RESHADED framework for architecting web-scale applications by determining requirements, constraints, and assumptions before diving into a step-by-step design process.

Overview

The product design process aims for an excellent user experience. In reality, however, it is in the hands of the end-user and not the designers involved in the design process. Empathy mapping makes the design process human-centered by helping the research team hear like the user, see like the user, and think like the user. The final documentation of the empathy map can help everyone feel like the user without truly being the user.

Empathy mapping

This is a visual representation of user behavior and attitude towards a product. When we hear, see, and think like the user, we'll know what is needed to solve the user's problem. This is a user-centering tool for product design and does not replace the user journey mapping process. It is engaged in the initial part of the project just after conducting user research.

Illustration of an empathy map

Steps to empathy mapping

  1. Identify target users: Identify target users for focus. Who are we mapping for? Gather information from the user research carried out. Identify the personas and map. What do we desire at the end of the day? What does success look like? What are the expectations of the user and the designers?
  2. Identify externals: What does the user see? What does the user say? What does the user hear? What does the user do? Discover the user’s activities and day-to-day life tasks and capture the data. How do users react to their environment? What information is the user exposed to regularly, and how does this information affect them?
  3. Identify internals: What does the user think? What does the user feel? What occupies the user’s mind at most times? What makes the user happy or sad? Is the user anxious? Is the user easily scared? Is the user easily excited? Is the user timid? Is the user decisive? These use cases represent the target audience for the products.
  4. Document and present: Once all of the relevant user information is collected, we can document it using the given template and present it to other members of the project team, as this will enable everyone to feel and think like the user.

Benefits of empathy mapping

  1. It is relatively inexpensive and can be carried out without much time to help inform design decisions.
  2. It keeps the design team all on the same page, where everyone feels and thinks like the user.
  3. It allows the design team to identify actionable paths around the product development.
  4. It provides a visual representation of the end user which is accessible to everyone on the team.

RELATED TAGS

design
ui/ux
communitycreator

Grokking Modern System Design Interview for Engineers & Managers

Ace your System Design Interview and take your career to the next level. Learn to handle the design of applications like Netflix, Quora, Facebook, Uber, and many more in a 45-min interview. Learn the RESHADED framework for architecting web-scale applications by determining requirements, constraints, and assumptions before diving into a step-by-step design process.

Keep Exploring