Digital products and services design

21 Feb 2024. 11:36
5 min. of reading
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  • SME maturity
    1. Estrategias e iniciativas digitales
    Scope to digitize
    1. Digital strategy

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New technological trends have led to the expansion of the use of digital products and services. These have great advantages for SMEs and freelancers, such as saving time and resources, customization or commitment to the environment.

In this monograph you will learn all about digital products and services and how to implement a methodology to design them. Don't miss it!

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Executive summary

We coexist surrounded by digital products and services, from WhatsApp to Google Maps, and all of them stem from an idea, from a prior design. Design is, therefore, crucial to creating successful products that people want to use and that address a need.

Before defining the design, it is necessary to understand what digital products and services are. Digital products are those that exist in a digital format, as opposed to physical products. Examples include an application, a website, or an e-book. Thus, while a computer application is a digital product, if we go up a level, we find that this digital product is part of a broader service. When talking about a service, considerations include the user, the brand, and the company itself.

The advantages of digital products lie in the convenience they offer, as they can be consumed from anywhere, the time and money saved for access, the potential for customization, and their ecological aspect due to the reduction of physical materials.

Design essentially involves solving a problem, addressing a need, and finding added value. Additionally, if it is oriented towards socially and environmentally sustainable design, it can contribute value to society as a whole and have a forward-looking perspective, focusing on long-term goals and innovation. Thus, the philosophy of design has evolved from user-centered and person-centered design to design for all, considering a perspective of social inclusivity and accessibility, and to planet-centric design, integrating environmental considerations.

Within the methodologies of digital product design, Design Thinking stands out. From the perspective of putting people at the center, it is based on five main phases:

  1. Empathize: Understand the target audience and their difficulties.
  2. Define the problem: Clearly identify the problems to be solved.
  3. Ideate: Apply methodologies to seek concrete solutions from different perspectives.
  4. Prototype: Create representative models of the solution to measure whether it meets needs and expectations before digital development.
  5. Test: Once the prototype is created, test it with the target audience to understand how it is interacted with and make necessary adaptations.

This design methodology also allows the integration of accessibility and social and environmental sustainability philosophies in ideation.

Finally, design is also present during the creation of the product or service. The production phases involve its software development, often using agile methodologies. This allows for showcasing progress before the final product and making adjustments as needed. Testing is crucial during this phase, where design stakeholders play a key validation role. The next phases include product launch and marketing, followed by maintenance and support. Within maintenance, the design perspective is essential for continuous review and improvement, adding new features, and enhancing the product or service.

In conclusion, design accompanies the entire life cycle of the product. It begins with the product, accompanies it during development and launch, and continues to be present for its evolution and improvement.

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