User Story Mapping is a visual exercise often performed by product managers and their application development or web development teams to define the work that will create the most enjoyable, optimal, and agile user experience.
In other words, it is an agile and powerful product design method that is used to create a user-centered product, that is, they are the visual aid to build a shared understanding between the members of a web or application development project, to learn how to develop a successful design process.
This type of method is used to improve the understanding of the teams of their clients and to prioritize the work of all the development teams, where they create a dynamic diagram of the interactions of a representative user with the product, evaluating what steps the greater benefit for the user and prioritizing what should be built next.
In this case, this process always begins with the understanding of a problem and at the same time, knowing the user’s objectives, allowing to centrally draw the steps that this user will go through to achieve their objectives and thus narrate a natural narrative flow. user journey to explore all user activity easily.
Basic elements of a User Story Mapping
In order to know how to elaborate a User Story Mapping, it is important to know what are the structural elements that organize this type of design, that is why in Huenei IT Services we first present their names and in this way, you will be able to better understand each of the steps.
Next, the basic elements of this type of design, which, when organized in two dimensions (the vertical denotes priority, while the horizontal represents the steps a user takes to perform actions in the system, also known as the user’s journey or Buyer’s journey, allow a simple and clear reading of the general structure:
In English, you will find it as “Backbone” and this is the base of the map, it consists of epics or themes that describe the general activities of the user in the system, such as “Search Products”, in this case, the epics are organized in horizontal order, as they represent the steps a user takes while interacting with the product, which is basically a simple visualization of the user’s journey.
In order to better understand the concepts of epics and epics within this structure, it is important to know that the epic represents the User Story so large as to be able to accommodate multiple stories and the epic refers to when multiple epics are held in and of themselves.
2) User Stories
Also known as “Stories” and unlike a flat backlog structure, user stories are organized in vertical and horizontal dimensions.
In this case, they are grouped into corresponding epics, which describe more specific tasks that a user may require. If an epic describes a search phase, it can include stories like basic search, filter products, advanced search, etc. When stories are vertically prioritized, they can be broken into releases.
It refers to the fictitious people who will use the product, that is, they will carry out the steps described in the user stories.
This element is provided by UX specialists or by the marketing department and will serve as the basis for the map, since not knowing who the users are, it will be impossible to understand the epics of the product and, therefore, will lose the whole point of the story mapping.
By having user people or talking to UX staff, you can define who are the people who will perform certain actions in the system.
Guide to develop a User Story Mapping
Making a User Story Mapping will be as varied and different according to the size of your team, the scope and duration of a project, and the maturity phase of the product.
However, this is a process that must be carried out, especially when optimal results are expected from start to finish, and for this, the best time to start making it is when you have met all the product requirements and defined the equipment to the project, already knowing what the backbone is, the stories of the users and the users, it is easier to carry out these steps.
Step 1: Set the objectives of the project
First of all, focus on the potential customers of your business and summarize what goals these customers can achieve through the use of your product, write each of the goals and organize them in the logical order, you can use stickers or do it on aboard.
Step 2: Create the trip map
After collecting the objectives, it accounts for the user’s journey to achieving the objective, identifies the steps and avoids errors by faithfully following the narrative flow, to organize it closer to reality, placing the steps on the second line, step by step.
Step 3: Find solutions
Through this process, you create “user stories”, initially, you can use the following template: As a user – I Want This Goal – So the step is this.
Brainstorm with your team to collect most of the possible solutions and put all the user stories in the related steps.
Step 4: Organize the tasks according to their priority
If the brainstorming team was successful, then the story map should be full of great ideas, however, these stories cannot be run at the same time so in this step, you determine the different priority levels.
Identify the most common behavior or basic solution to the problem, so you organize user stories by priority and put the most important one at the top of the column.
Discussing customer priorities is crucial, so make sure you stay connected to your partners.
Step 5: Determine the launch structure
To do this, it initially indicates the smallest part of the product, the minimum viable product, and tries to complete the user’s journey starting with the most common or easiest tasks to carry out.
In this part, just focus on completing at least one user journey, after that, organize the rest of the accumulated work into tangible pieces by drawing horizontal lines between tasks.
By adding estimates to user stories, you can plan and schedule the entire development process version by version.
All the steps in this guide to elaborate a User Story Mapping are important, especially the latter represents one of the most important pieces of information in the whole process because it not only represents a crucial phase of the map but also because it will help you calculate the delivery time and costs.
The most important thing is to always keep in mind the end-user experience since their level of satisfaction and adoption are key in the success of the development, as well as in the fulfillment of the business objectives.
If you need to know more about User Story Mapping, we recommend you visit our services page UX / UI Design Services .