How to Design for a Voice User Interface (VUI)

Voice Consumer Interfaces (VUIs) are swiftly changing into an integral a part of our every day lives. From good dwelling units to customer support chatbots, the functions are countless—and so they’re all over the place.

Nevertheless, designing a VUI is a singular problem that requires a specialised method. This text goals to information you thru the sensible steps of designing a VUI, full with software suggestions and actionable ideas.

Step one in your VUI design journey is choosing the correct instruments. Your selection will considerably impression your workflow, so it’s best to all the time choose instruments that align together with your wants and ability degree.



For those who’re new to VUI design or favor a no-code method, Voiceflow is a superb place to begin. It provides a drag-and-drop interface the place you may map out the dialog circulate, add logic, and even combine with exterior APIs. Voiceflow additionally permits you to check your designs in real-time, making it simpler to iterate and enhance.



For these working in groups, Fabble provides collaborative options that may streamline the design course of. You may work on the identical undertaking concurrently, depart feedback, and even assign duties. Fabble additionally provides model management, so you may simply revert to earlier designs if wanted.



For those who’re searching for extra superior options, Voxable provides script diagramming and testing capabilities. It’s notably helpful in the event you’re designing complicated VUIs that require intricate dialog flows and logic.

2. Outline Your Consumer Persona: Know Who You’re Speaking To

Understanding your consumer is the cornerstone of any design course of. In VUI, that is much more crucial as a result of you should anticipate how customers will work together utilizing voice instructions.

Begin by gathering information about your target market. Instruments like Google Analytics can present useful insights into consumer demographics and habits. Upon getting sufficient information, create detailed user personas. These personas will function a reference all through your design course of, serving to you make user-centered selections.

3. Select the Proper Platform: Tailoring Your Design

Totally different VUI platforms like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant have their very own set of capabilities and limitations. As an illustration, in the event you’re designing for Amazon Alexa, you may wish to use the Amazon Alexa UI Kit for Adobe XD. This package supplies pre-designed parts that adhere to Alexa’s design pointers, saving you time and guaranteeing compatibility.

What you find yourself utilizing will rely closely on the place you anticipate your customers connecting with you.

4. Map Out Consumer Flows

Mapping out consumer flows is like making a blueprint for a constructing. It helps you visualize the steps a consumer will take to perform a process, making it simpler to establish potential roadblocks or areas for enchancment.

You should use flowchart software program like Lucidchart to create these consumer flows. Begin by itemizing down the first actions a consumer may wish to carry out. Then, sketch out the steps concerned in every motion, contemplating alternate paths and potential errors. This train gives you a transparent roadmap in your VUI design.

5. Design the Dialog and Craft the Consumer Expertise

The conversation is the place your VUI involves life. It’s the core interplay between the consumer and your system, so it must be as pure and intuitive as doable.

Begin by writing pattern dialogues for every consumer circulate you’ve mapped out. These dialogues function the script in your VUI, guiding each the consumer and the system by means of the interplay. You should use a software like Voxable to write down and check these dialogues, guaranteeing they circulate naturally and canopy all doable consumer inputs.

6. Implement Pure Language Processing

Pure Language Processing (NLP) is the true magic behind your VUI, enabling it to grasp and reply to consumer instructions. With out NLP, your VUI can be like a automobile with out an engine — fairly to take a look at however not very helpful.



For individuals who are comfy with a little bit of coding, Dialogflow is a sturdy selection. It’s a Google Cloud service that permits you to construct conversational interfaces. You may practice your VUI to grasp numerous phrases and instructions that customers may use.

Dialogflow additionally provides built-in integrations with platforms like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, making it simpler to deploy your VUI as soon as it’s prepared.

One other wonderful software for implementing NLP is It’s a extra simple software than Dialogflow and provides a user-friendly interface for coaching your VUI. You may simply add new “intents” (consumer targets expressed in a sentence) and “entities” (key phrases or phrases that the VUI ought to acknowledge), making your VUI extra clever over time.

Easy methods to Implement NLP

Upon getting chosen your NLP software, it’s time to implement it. Right here’s what the method may appear to be for you;

  1. Prepare Your System: Begin by feeding your chosen NLP software with numerous phrases and instructions that customers may use. This is named “coaching” your system.
  2. Check and Refine: Use the testing options in your NLP software to simulate conversations. Take note of how effectively the system understands totally different phrases and makes applicable responses. Refine your coaching information based mostly on these checks.
  3. Iterate: NLP is just not a one-time setup. As extra customers work together together with your VUI, you’ll collect extra information that can be utilized to additional practice and refine your system.

7. Deal with Errors Gracefully

No system is ideal, and errors are inevitable. How your VUI handles these errors could make or break the expertise in your finish consumer, so be conscious of that together with your preliminary design.

A number of ideas:

  1. Clear Error Messages: If the system doesn’t perceive a command, it ought to inform the consumer in a transparent and pleasant method. Keep away from technical jargon which may confuse the consumer.
  2. Supply Recommendations: When an error happens, information the consumer by providing different instructions or asking clarifying questions. This not solely helps resolve the difficulty but additionally educates the consumer on how you can work together together with your VUI successfully.

8. Check with Actual Customers

You’ve designed your VUI, carried out NLP, and even deliberate for errors. Now it’s time to see the way it performs in the actual world.

Platforms like assist you to get actual individuals to check your VUI. You may set particular duties for testers to finish after which watch recordings of their interactions. This supplies invaluable insights into how actual customers will work together together with your VUI and the place you may have to make enhancements.

9. Keep Up to date

The sector of VUI design is altering just about every single day, with new instruments being developed, and finest practices regularly refined. Keep up to date by subscribing to trade newsletters, attending webinars, and interacting with the neighborhood on social media.

10. Launch and Monitor

When you’re glad together with your VUI design, it’s time to launch. However your work isn’t over. Use analytics instruments to watch how customers are interacting together with your VUI. Search for patterns that can provide you insights into consumer habits and preferences. Then use this information to make ongoing enhancements.

Create a Voice Consumer Interface Now

Designing a Voice Consumer Interface is a rewarding problem that mixes consumer psychology, design rules, and technical experience. However hopefully, this quick-start information might help you in making a VUI that delights your customers and meets what you are promoting targets. Good luck!

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