WordCamp Miami 2017: You Are Not Your Audience, How to Create User-Centered Design

Though I was over 1,300 miles away, thanks to the WordCamp Miami 2017 livestream, I was able to attend their WordCamp this past weekend.

The free livestream covered both Saturday and Sunday sessions, with talks for users, designers, developers, business owners, and marketers.

I kicked off Saturday with the first content/design talk of the day, You Are Not Your Audience: How to Create User-Centered Design by Tracy Apps, which focused on using design to solve problems for your audience.

Tracy shared insights for looking at our design process and steps we can take for a more successful design project.

Here are my notes and some of the social media conversation from Tracy’s talk.

You Are Not Your Audience, How to Create User-Centered Design

  • Create content that your audience understands. We are often too close to our projects and use words, phrasing that our users don’t use. Use plain language, avoid jargon.
  • Be inclusive. Find out what words users use: check Google for word patterns for what people look for. Consider a survey to find out what words people use and understand.
  • What is the purpose of your site? Invest time and effort in your website discovery process.
    • Conduct stakeholder interviews to identify the purpose of the web project, what success looks like, how the site will solve problems for users.
    • Include user behaviors and goals rather than demographics in your user stories/personas

    • In design meetings, always think of the user first
  • When creating user-centered design, consider accessibility. Add captions and descriptions to videos. Did you know 85 percent of Facebook videos are watched without sound?
  • Not focusing on accessibility means you’re not focusing on usability
  • Resources for testing web accessibility:


Tracy graciously published You Are Not Your Audience: How to Create User Centered Design presentation slides on SpeakerDeck.

Thanks Tracy for an excellent talk on user-centered design!

If you weren’t able to attend WordCamp Miami 2017 and didn’t catch the livestream, look for the videos to be published soon on WordPress.tv.

Photo of author

About the Author

Deborah Edwards-Onoro helps small businesses, consultants, nonprofits, and higher ed with creative and distinctive websites. Deborah shares her expertise with web design, user experience, and accessibility on her blog, social media, and at meetup events. As organizer of Refresh Detroit, West Metro Detroit WordPress, and Metro Detroit WordPress, she encourages members to share their knowledge and experiences. In her free time, you'll find her birding, shooting photos, reading, or watching tennis.

2 thoughts on “WordCamp Miami 2017: You Are Not Your Audience, How to Create User-Centered Design”

  1. Nice review of that session! And it was fun to virtually attend with other online friends who couldn’t actually make it to Miami. I may try to jot down a few thoughts myself this evening – if I can get my brain unscrambled from today…

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: