As an entrepreneur are you wondering if you can support designers with AI tools? In this article I wanted to answer this question from the designer’s perspective, who is (or at least should be) focused on users and their real needs. For this purpose, I will use an example of working on personas and heatmaps.
Personas are fictional representations of specific user groups that help businesses and designers understand their target audience better. Creating personas typically involves analyzing user data and extracting common characteristics, preferences, and behaviors of different user segments.
AI can assist in generating personas by analyzing large datasets, identifying patterns, and clustering users based on their attributes and behaviors. Natural Language Processing (NLP) techniques can be used to analyze qualitative data from surveys, reviews, and other sources to extract valuable insights about user preferences and motivations. AI can then create personas based on the discovered patterns and characteristics.
Will AI provide you with ready-made personas? From my perspective – no. AI tools can help you write interview guides, survey or process data. So far, no one can interview a person as well as a person (who works as a UX designer 😊).
Tools that advertise that they are able to generate a persona after adding a short product description are not so helpful. They contradict the idea of UX design as working with real – current or potential – users, in order to provide them with the best possible experience. You can use them a starting point if you have no idea of the target audience you’ll be dealing with. Either way, they need to be validated.
The situation is similar in the case of heatmaps, which are graphical representations of data where individual values are represented as colors. Heatmaps can be generated for various purposes, such as visualizing user behavior on a website. AI can be used to process and analyze the data (obtained from users navigating the site), generate insights, and produce the heatmap. And at this stage everything is fine.
Problems from my – as a UX designer – perspective start when we want to use a tool, which excludes users from this process. On the market we already have really strange tools that generate the so-called heatmaps, which are generated automatically after loading our projects into them. In my opinion it can be helpful and can be treated as a confirmation of the designer’s design skills but it shouldn’t be called a heatmap. It’s a bit like calling sausages vegan.
So is it worth to invest in tools which analyze data obtained from the users? My answer is yes – if you want to save time, relieve the designer or optimize some processes. But please don’t abuse not user-driven data.
I invite you to also read my article: “Are AI-generated images a creation you want to pay for?”, in which I wonder what cooperation with designers may look like in the future.