November 5, 2020
Users first: how digitalization makes creating cosmetics delightful
ozmi's head of product on creating the simplest platform for developing beauty products
Just like business-to-consumer platforms, business-to-business platforms should make a wide variety of powerful features easy and pleasant to use. Performing a B2B task shouldn't be any harder than, say, comparing and selecting a product on Amazon, or finding and booking a rental on AirBNB. Developers should keep this at the forefront of their minds, and that has been the primary concern of the ozmi™ team from the start of the development process.
"When we started with the idea of ozmi, it was very important for us that the user experience should be delightful; ozmi should be user-centric", said Nanjunda Rao Rayasam, the head of product at Chemster, the company developing ozmi.
The idea was to automate and speed up standard processes in cosmetics creation, so that solution providers can maximize efficiency and brands can focus on creativity.
ozmi's approach encourages users to learn the platform independently, requiring no previous training. This, Mr. Rao Rayasam said, adds a delightful dimension to the experience.
But user experience, also called UX, is more than just usability.
A tried-and-true set of UX values
According to information-architecture and UX expert Peter Morville, for a user experience to be meaningful and valuable, the product in use must live up to a set of defined values.
Peter Morville’s important UX values:
- Useful: It should be original and fulfill a need or solve a problem
- Usable: It must be easy to use
- Desirable: Image, identity, brand, and other design elements are used to evoke emotion and appreciation
- Findable: It should be easy to find and navigate
- Accessible: It needs to be usable by people with a full range of abilities
- Credible: Users must trust and believe in it
- Valuable: It must deliver value to its users and its creators
With this in mind, at the start of the internal and collaborative UX development process, Mr. Rao Rayasam set down a set of six principles to ensure that cosmetics creators’ user experience is front and center at ozmi.
ozmi's six principles for good user experience
The first principle was that the platform must be intuitive, with assistance to help users smoothly complete their tasks. These assistance tools learn from user behavior and adapt accordingly; for example, the tools anticipate which project steps users often get stuck on, and learn to offer guidance there. The more users use the platform, the more intuitive it gets. This feature set is in development, and will be rolled out to ozmi users in the near future.
A good design must also be easy to understand, Mr. Rao Rayasam said. This means clear visual representations of data, using dashboards and infographics intelligently. The third principle was a simple, clutter-free user interface (UI)—made even simpler by the predictive tools we mentioned before.
No matter how simple the interface is, though, strong security is always most important. This includes verifying that all users are professional, reliable and trustworthy, as well as ensuring the product follows strict data-protection laws like the European GDPR. Then comes user-oriented, behavior-based UI, with algorithms that learn to detect user actions and preferences, and use these to assist users when they need it. This also helps the design team make ongoing adjustments.
Last but not least, ozmi is designed to elicit positive emotions and make the overall experience delightful, with features like animations and other pleasant microinteractions.
For beauty brands and solution providers: try it yourself!
With the six-point approach Mr. Rao Rayasam describes, ozmi strives to fulfill the UX values mentioned before.
"We have known from the beginning that our search, collaboration and information features would need to be paired with excellent design," he said. "We want users to want to use our platform."
To show what we mean, we'd like to offer new users a free trial. Down the road, some functions will become paid, but many of the features in ozmi will remain free to use. Try the delightful ozmi platform experience for yourself, and discover how you can create cosmetics the delightful way.