On paper, a digital product designer and a UX designer job description may look very similar. And to make things even more confusing, the name of these types of jobs have been used interchangeably for a while now.
The way I see it, UX designers tackle part of the digital product journey, whilst digital product designers oversee the product from end to end. So whilst these two jobs might read similarly on paper, there are seemingly subtle, yet big differences. Let me explain.
What is a UX designer?
UX designer is the more common term of the two, made popular with the rise of SaaS products. A UX designer is focused solely on the user-led functionality of your product (user experience and satisfaction). This means spending time in the earlier stages of a digital design project, including buyer persona research, creating user flows, outlining wireframes and testing.
There are many great reasons why UX design is important to the success of your digital product. Most importantly, if you take this process away you end up with a product that is likely to look good but functions badly, making it unsellable.
What is a digital product designer?
Historically product designers worked on physical products before the days of rapid tech growth. By the early 2010’s the term digital product designer first became known and just like the term UX design, it was commonly linked to the SaaS industry.
Generally, a digital product designer has a broader skill-set than a UX designer, allowing them to facilitate the end-to-end of your digital product journey. This makes them a great choice for a product manager in my experience.
Whilst they are involved in early brainstorming and UX design iterations, they tend to be more visual. So you would expect a digital product designer to oversee UX and UI work, whilst having a bigger say in the aesthetics and branding of the product.
That’s not to say that you couldn’t find a good digital product designer who enjoys the complexities of UX Design!
Digital product designer vs UX designer: The takeaway
Whilst it is easy to confuse both jobs as the same thing, they are in fact quite different and who you choose to hire for your digital product really does matter. Depending on the product and the business you run, you may need more specialist help from one designer over another, or you may need someone who can facilitate the product creation from idea to launch.
If you need an expert team of digital product designers who also specialise in UX design, then contact us today using our Project Planner below!