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Inclusivity and Diversity in UX Design

Posted by Carolina Alpizar on 30/01/2023


We have seen how UX Design has been moving more towards personalised designs for their audiences. In order to continue creating meaningful experiences and interactions between users and products. With this, it is important to also talk about the topic of inclusivity. A word we’ve been hearing across various fields and in the cultural zeitgeist more and more. In design, inclusivity goes beyond finding ways to design a more accessible website. 

An inclusive design includes the needs of users who might be excluded in daily life due to belonging to an oppressed group or minority. UX professionals have the ability and power to shape the nature of a product and in this, will play a big role in making decisions that could either benefit or affect demographic groups that are often overlooked or ignored. Here it is important to make a small differentiation between inclusive design, accessibility design, and universal design as these terms are often interchanged and although they are related, they are also different. 

  • Accessible Design: Accessibility looks to ensure that products or services are able to meet individual users’ needs and preference regardless of their differing abilities. Therefore, a product or service should be able to be utilised by anyone and be accommodated depending on their skills or needs. 
  • Inclusive Design: an inclusive design does not mean to design one thing for everyone. It looks for ways to design in which everyone who uses the product has a sense of belonging, and feels heard and seen
  • Universal Design: this looks to design products that can be used by everyone without the need for adaptation or any kind of specialised design procedure. 

Here are some ways in which the design process could find more inclusive and accessible ways to create products: 

Diversity in Groups and Teams

When speaking of inclusivity and diversity it is important to also talk about bias. Unconscious bias is experienced by every human. It’s a cognitive shortcut, so to say, based on past experiences that allows us to better understand the world around us. However, they’re not always beneficial and can sometimes lead to excluding certain people or groups with certain characteristics since they may not be part of our psyche. Therefore, building teams that can lessen these behaviours allows for a more inclusive design process and allows to overcome individual biases, and take into account diverse cultural backgrounds, different behaviours, identifies, looks, and many other characteristics that enriches the design process making it more inclusive. 

Involving uUsers

No one can tell your story and experiences like you can. And just like that, contacting users and talking to them about their needs, their experiences, and ideas provides much better insight into how to design a product rather than just trying to figure out what these groups potentially need or what their experiences might look like. In UX, Users are at the centre of everything and products and solutions should be built and designed around this. So clearly, Contact with users is a very reliable way of ensuring that a product will be inclusive. 

Inclusivity or Accessibility?

There is often a direct association between inclusive design and accessibility. And although they are both important and related, they are not the same. Accessibility in design refers to the design process of products, services, or devices that can be usable by people with disabilities. Whereas inclusivity goes beyond accessibility. An inclusive design should be accessible since the design and creation process has taken into account all groups that could be part of their target audience but are often overlooked. Some ways to have a more inclusive design process could be in the use of inclusive imagery or abstract imagery, or inclusive language in copy and text, adding descriptions to imagery, as well as being mindful of the use of colours, typography and contrast so that the content can be seen and understood by different audiences. 

As mentioned above, UX believes that users are at the centre of the design process. Therefore, understanding who the users are, their different experiences, skills, and needs makes for a more successful design. When people feel seen, heard, and represented by a product, their sense of loyalty grows and there is a stronger relationship between the user and the product. Users then eventually become clients more than consumers or occasional users since they feel included and taken into consideration. 

Savant is informed by market research and has a specialised Digital Design team with extensive experience and expertise in UX/UI talent solutions. If you are looking to build or expand your Design and/or Development function, we can support you with the best talent in the industry with experts and market leading onboarding advice and consultation. To find out more about how we can assist you, please reach out to us at


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