Importance of lean UX in creating products people love.

Importance of lean UX in creating products people love.

A human institution designed to create a new product or service under conditions of extreme uncertainty - Eric Ries

Definition of Lean UX

Lean UX is a way to apply the methods of learning as quickly as possible and reducing the cycle time, through the build, measure and learn loop commonly used in the Lean methodology.

Lean startup

Practicing Lean UX is a way to validate with users that the product or feature will actually be used. It's about designing usable and useful products.

Lean UX, based on the foundation of Agile development, is a user-centric approach that focuses on reducing the waste produced during the design cycle, and enhancing the UX through multiple iterations without spending much time on documentation.

Main characteristics of Lean UX

1. Validation of hypothesis and assumptions

A common misconception in UX is to assume that we know what we’re building, the lean UX however aims to frame everything as a hypothesis which is going to be validated before even committing to building the product. Building an MVP, a smallest possible product, could help validate whether our hypothesis are true or not. An MVP experiment could be in form of a prototype or a non prototype.


  • Paper
  • Wireframe
  • Code prototype

Non Prototype

  • Email
  • Adwords
  • Landing pages

2. Cross functional teams

Dilbert Lean UX

Creating a cross-functional or a multi-disciplinary team where not only UX Designers are involved but also product managers, engineers, marketers are all involved in the design, build and release phases to deliver value to their customers.

An organisational shift is therefore important to create a problem focused cross functional team.

3. Measurement and testing

Lean UX uses a different approach to deliverables where it focuses on delivering a working product and learn from users interacting with it, a great way to test whether the user interaction is positive or not is using A/B testing. In contrast, traditional UX deliverables focuses on wireframes or research documents however they will not solve the problems of the users, but the product will.

Functional software is more important than comprehensive documentation – Jeff Gothelf, Lean UX

Measurement in UX

Gathering analytics & metrics, data about your product, for instance, how many users we have, how much money we make, what your conversion rate is, is a necessary to measure and test all of the design and product decisions.

Why metrics are important?

Metrics help us make better product decisions and assess the decisions we're making, metrics also help us to:

  • Validate assumptions
  • Measure the impact of the changes we’ve deployed
  • Make better decisions

Defining a good metric is not as straight forward as it appears to be, although a good metric could easily share the following three main components:

  • A good metric is comparative
  • A good metric is actionable
  • A good metric is understandable & measurable


Ready to take a deeper dive into Lean UX? Check out these resources.

Ismail Mechbal
Ismail Mechbal
2019-02-11 | 3 min read
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