What Does a UX Writer Do?
A UX writer researches users and accordingly drafts microcopies for digital products, like mobile applications, and websites. They draft microcopies according to gathered customer data to enhance user experience.
Small pieces of text are microcopies. As the interface content is small and compact, thus such content is called a microcopy.
Keep in mind that UX writing microcopies is not generic copywriting copies. Copywriting means writing copies to convert sales, while UX writing targets a good user experience as it helps a user navigate successfully through digital interfaces and multiple platforms.
A UX writer also writes copy for user interfaces. It can be error messages, notification contents, landing pages, and navigation guides.
A user interface is a digital interface of an application or a website that a user interacts with to perform an action.
When it comes to obtaining a good customer experience, a UX writer encounters various factors like user interface, user experience design, customer needs, business goals, and content strategies.
In addition to that, a UX writer has a sound understanding of UX/UI design. Hence, they write cohesive product narratives that are user-centered to drive more leads.
The above-mentioned duties are not even a pinch of user experience writers' main job duties. That is why we have composed this article for you to completely understand the day-to-day tasks of a UX writer.
Let’s dive into a detailed section to understand UX writers’ duties and writing skills.
UX Writer Responsibilities
User experience writers dive into users’ minds and conduct user research to know how they interact with a digital interface and navigate through a product. In addition to that, this thorough research enables a UX writer to examine the ways to improve the customer’s experience.
Thus, a UX writer requires to build a thorough understanding of what a customer desires, and what are their needs. Later, they use this data in the development of a digital product.
Only this way, a product’s aim can resonate with customer needs and business goals. UX writer research the challenges of a product.
It is clear that each digital product aims to have a specific goal and to achieve this goal, there come certain challenges. A UX writer must overcome these challenges to ensure a better customer experience.
Furthermore, one of the biggest challenges in UX writing is to match the content with different personas and make it more generic yet powerful. This means a UX writer should be able to pick different mindsets with different knowledge levels, and later compose the microcopies with a language and technical proficiency that is suitable for personas of all kinds.
UX writing involves so many job requirements and technicalities, thus it is better to write the duties of user experience writers in sections for better comprehension.
Here is the list of responsibilities of a UX writer:
1. Analyze the Target Audience
User experience writers compose copies of a digital product. These copies include crafting the error message, text on buttons, menu lists, and push notifications.
For effective writing, they must analyze who the target audience is, and what are their needs.
To do this, a UX writer considers the audience's values and researches the demographics. They acquire a sound knowledge of the audience’s geographic location to develop a user persona.
To identify the audience, a UX writer goes through this set of questions:
- What is the product need?
- What are product goals?
- Am I effectively communicating my product content with the audience?
- What kind of users will value my product?
- Am I following the market trends?
Thorough research on these questions allows a UX writer to successfully identify the target audience. This research allows the user experience writers to understand the product goals in a better way as they now are viewing it from the user’s point of view.
Once they analyze the audience, they focus on what they seek in a digital product. Furthermore, this audience identification opens ways to develop a digital product that is more user-centered.
2. Conduct User Research
After user experience writers identify the target audience for their product, they then focus on researching users.
UX research involves researching answers to these queries:
- When can users feel the need to use this product?
- What problems do they face and how do these problems affect them?
- Will a product efficiently help users?
- What is the level of importance of problems users encounter?
- What is the best solution to overcome the user's problems?
- How can you optimize the problem solution in terms of both users’ needs and business goals?
- What’s the expertise level of users and their geographic location?
- What is the age range for the major audience?
After UX writers acquire answers to these questions, they must acquire the user understanding and how they interact and navigate a digital product.
This research opens ways to develop a product that is not just user-centered but also leads to better sales and conversions. Furthermore, this way UX writers think from both the user and business’s perspective.
Moreover, UX research enables user experience writers to understand customer needs. Hence they come up with creative ideas to benefit the organization.
3. Provide Ideas for Microcopy
The most necessary step after analyzing the target audience and conducting research is to iterate multiple product microcopies.
Never think that product interfaces are written in just a single slap. Instead, the contents are iterated multiple times before going with the final option.
Thus, a button can only contain a single phrase, but there are no doubt multiple approaches to writing its content.
A UX writer drafts multiple copies for a single option/button. They merge the data collected from research into their writing to drive cohesive product narratives. With this data, they iterate multiple times for a single microcopy.
Keep in mind that, UX writers carry these iterations with the assistance of the product design team. The UX design is as important in UX writing as the microcopy is for a good user experience. Thus, user experience writers work along with UX designers to accomplish this hurdle.
Apart from the UX designer’s assistance, a content strategist plays an important role in this step. Sometimes, a UX writer has to play the role of content strategist and UX designer at the same time. Although these roles are not officially granted but as you know that UX writing involves the familiarity of multiple skills.
Keeping in view different aspects of UX designers and content strategists, a UX writer drafts microcopies in multiple ways. This can also include multiple design options for each iteration, thus the spectrum of final choice is broad.
The final choice for a microcopy depends on whatever iteration helps the users most and follows the business and product goals. Hence, the winning choice has to go through various tests to crosscheck target goals.
4. Refine the Copies and their Iterations
UX writer’s job duties include refining written copies. They proofread the written copies and check for correctness, clarity, conciseness, and comprehension.
In addition to that, user experience writers proofread the microcopies for any grammatical mistakes or typos. As UX writing uses the technical writing rules, hence they make sure that technical jargon and passive voice sentences are avoided.
Furthermore, the copies are refined with the condition that these are readable for users of all ages and technical proficiencies.
Sometimes, the written copies are sent to a third person to analyze. This analysis is made to catch the initial impressions. A user experience writing microcopy passes if the impressions are normal or positive. On the other hand, if the impressions are confusing then that specific iteration is rejected.
Now you’d understand why there was the need for multiple iterations. Hence, a UX writer has to follow precautionary measures like these to avoid any repetitive tasks.
Refining is not solely for written copies but also UX designs. Hence, the design process is refined and checked multiple times before it is finalized.
This UX refinement task is also among UX writers’ duties, as we have told before that UX writing is a multi-skill field. UX writers check whether the microcopies and UX design resonate or not with the brand voice. And based on this check, a design or copy is refined to make it more user and business-centered.
5. Conduct Tests
Just as UX research leads to identifying product aspects, testing leads to a focused product. This requires UX writers to conduct quality assurance tests before launching a product.
QA testing identifies the product issues and bugs. Thus, this testing leads to a successful product launch without any technical, writing, or design process issues.
Apart from QA testing, UX writers are responsible to conduct A/B testing as well. A/B testing involves the judgment of various iterations. The different iterations UX writer composed are beta-tested initially to check the response of visitors.
The iteration and copy that drives more impact and business metrics is a winning choice. A/B testing also checks the design and content of various control buttons with variations.
Thus, UX writers conduct these tests on prototypes before they officially launch a product in the market.
These tests ensure how well a product works. In this step, the UX writers forward the prototypes to SME(s) and stakeholders to get their thoughts on the product.
After the results of these tests are gathered, the calculated metrics are merged into the final decision.
6. Prepare Prototypes and Reviews it
As discussed earlier, the prepared prototypes are launched in the market to only a small group of users who volunteer to be beta testers. But keep in mind that, this launch is not the official launch.
This initial launch is just to test and review the product.
This way, the UX writer notes down the identified issues. They also notice how a product can be improved.
Beta testers review these prototypes and inform any issues they faced in the product usage.
UX writers examine the final issues and make improvements. After the final edits are made, the UX writers forward the final prototype to SME(s) and stakeholders for their approval.
Later, when the product is finalized, it is sent for publishing purposes.
These are the typical duties of a UX writer we have mentioned above. Keep in mind that the above-mentioned duties are kind of generic, while the specific tasks vary from day to day.
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What do UX Writers Write?
By now, you’ll have established an understanding of the generic duties of a UX writer. But, you must be wondering what UX writing creates and what are these microcopies.
A UX writer collaborates with product management, content strategist, and content designer to draft microcopies for apps of various technology companies. Many companies offer writing jobs to hire their own UX writer to enhance web experiences.
The microcopies vary in nature. Here’s a list of copies UX writers mostly write. A UX writer:
- Writes error messages
- Composes CTAs
- Drafts prompt messages
- Writes onboarding instructions
- Prepares landing pages
- Draft settings and buttons content
- Composes pop-ups and push notification’s content
These are the list of examples of content UX writers mostly work upon. It is a mandatory requirement for UX writers to ensure consistency in brand voice. In addition to that, UX writers ensure a professional writing tone, consistent voice, and content flow.
We can wrap up the conversation by saying that UX writing is not a focused role. But in fact, UX writing is a multi-skill role in which they have to ensure user-centered design and efficient content.
If you are newer to this field, we recommend you opt for a UX writing course to enhance your skills. This way you can polish your skills and enhance your learnings.
Dedicated UX writers have excellent communication and soft skills. They work along with product managers, and the UX design team. A UX writer follows the brand process in their typical job duties.
They write such microcopy that helps users complete their tasks on a mobile app.
So, if you think you have the desired skills and can fulfill the above-mentioned tasks efficiently, you should apply to UX writing positions. But make sure you read the complete job description before submitting your application.
If you are new to UX writing and are looking to break-in, we recommend taking our UX Writing Certification Course, where you will learn the fundamentals of being a UX writer, how to dominate UX writer interviews, and how to stand out as a UX writing candidate.
Josh is the founder of Technical Writer HQ and Squibler, a writing software. He is considered one of the top product influencers in the world by Product School and one of the top technical writers. He has been writing software tutorials, manuals, handbooks, and white papers for over eight years. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.