When to use wireframes and when not to

over 5 years ago from Thierry van Trirum, Designer for e-commerce

  • Nathan Thomas, over 5 years ago

    I wire almost every project that does not already exist. The main reason is to focus myself and the product owner on content and architecture. If I'm working in hi-fidelity then I find myself getting in the weeds about visual design decisions. The visual part of design is a separate conversation from content and UX and can be overwhelming for everyone when trying to address both simultaneously.

    The wireframe step in my workflow also gives me some wiggle room to make bigger design or UX changes (which happens often). There's nothing worse than being locked in early on a poor decision that could have been avoided had I spent more time thinking things through. Hope this makes sense.

    Take all the above from the perspective of an agency designer where budgets are always a constraint. I just recently left a software development consultancy after 4 years as a UX team of one. I'm now seeking an opportunity to join a product company.

    2 points
    • Thierry van Trirum, over 5 years ago

      Hi Nathan, thanks for your story! Most projects include a couple of pages that already exist (i.e. a category overview page or a product detail page), so I guess wireframing isn't always necessary and depends on the situation at hand (:

      1 point