athering feedback from stakeholders and giving design reviews to others can often be an unorganized, chaotic process. You give your input and then, hours or possibly even days later someone else gives theirs. It can become difficult in these cases to keep track of everyone's input and suggestions. Luckily, Adobe XD has one centralized location where you can gather feedback on a design, helping to streamline the entire design review process. Additionally, users can now interact with each other's comments in real time to help expedite iterations in the design cycle. With the power of a single link, users are able to share out their designs and receive feedback from everyone invested in and working on the design.
All of this is boosted by XD's robust commenting tool, which allows users to bring others along in your iterative design process. Commenting makes it easy for teams to be transparent and stay up to date on the latest version of the design. In this article we will go over how to use these features as well as their benefits during the design review process.
How to generate a shared link
Before you can gather and receive feedback on your designs, you have to first generate a sharable link. Once you have reached a point in your design where you’re ready to share your prototype, head over to the top left of your screen and next to “Design” and “Prototype” you will see “Share”. Click this option in order to initiate the creation of your unique sharable link.
On the right hand of your screen you will notice the UI prompting you to set parameters labeled “Title”, “View Settings” and “Who Has Access”. Each dropdown gives you various control options surrounding your shared link.
“View Setting” will prompt you to choose one of five scenario-based viewing options:
Design Review - Great for gathering feedback.
Development - Used to articulate specifications to development.
For the purpose of getting feedback in a design review, make sure and choose the first option conveniently titled, “Design Review”. This will allow you to distribute this link to individuals granting them access to review your designs in real time. This really helps in the review process as you are able to push out updates in real time to key members. The users will be able to comment, view navigation controls, as well as receive hotspot hints as they navigate through your prototype. Not to mention this is completed 100% remotely, cutting out travel time and expense.
Once you have decided on the “View Setting” options, you can decide “Who Has Access” to your shared link. You may select “Only Invited People” limiting access to those you personally invite. The other option is “Anyone with the Link”. You may password protect this or leave it open to anyone who has the link. This is a great option when you do not have time to invite every member one by one. When you are done, select “Create Link” to generate your sharable link and let the design review process begin.
Benefits of the commenting feature in Adobe XD
Now that you have your shared link, the real productivity begins. Now you will be able to quickly share your designs with teammates and stakeholders in real time, no matter where they are in the world. This will create speed in your iteration process allowing for a streamlined, efficient review process.
When users access your link, they are able to view each individual artboard in detail and interact with any linked hotspots. This feature really helps bring your design to life. Why tell when you can show them? XD makes it easy to do just that.
The beauty of XD’s commenting feature is that everyone is able to leave and view comments in one centralized location. This helps keep organization as you receive feedback from different individuals. In addition, members can feed off each other as conversations spawn up from particular comments and recommendations. XD leaves a nice digital trail of how you got from one step to another in your design as that journey can get quite complex. This centralized location for comments really is a game changer in terms of organization, structure and efficiency.
Here is what the UI looks like to users. It gives you options on the right hand of the screen as seen below:
Here you can see the field allowing users to leave comments regarding that particular artboard. You are able to click the “@” to tag people in the comments to alert them to your comment. This will notify members in real time which helps expedite and streamline the review process. Additionally, you are able to pin comments directly to the artboard so the designer can see the section related to a particular comment. This makes for very effective, pinpointed feedback. You can also filter comments by type, status or reviewer to help navigate and locate specific feedback.
Using shared prototypes and commenting to streamline design reviews
Now that we know how to create a shared link and gather feedback and comments, let’s summarize how we can use this to streamline our design review process.
Firstly, when you share a link with a group of people for review, remember that you are able to constantly update the prototype as you iterate on your design. When one round of feedback is in, make your changes to your prototype, and simply update the link to kick off round two. You are able to bring stakeholders along with you each step of the way. This leaves no room for ambiguity or wondering how you spent your time as each milestone is shared with all appropriate parties involved.
Secondly, using shared links brings design feedback to one centralized location. Without a centralized location, feedback can become non-streamlined, scattered, and often lost. With Adobe XD, users are able to store all comments in one location for all to see (and feed off one another). Comments are stored in chronological order to help organize feedback. This centralized location brings a sense of community around the design review process, as it is intimately shared with those who are invested. Users can also reply to each others’ comments and designers can mark comments as resolved to keep the process running smoothly.
Lastly, users will now be able to polish off design reviews and make iterations from independent, remote locations since everyone will have access to this shared link. Long are the days of needing to be in the same physical location to review designs. Now, you are able to view prototypes and leave/receive targeted feedback from virtually anywhere with an internet connection. Designers are able to gather feedback in a lean, real time environment helping them make enhancements to their design quicker than if everyone had to meet in person. As our schedules continue to become busier and the pace of design work continues to accelerate, being able to complete more tasks remotely can be a big contributor to efficiency.
At the end of the day, Adobe XD makes it easy to get feedback on your designs in a real time environment, and this helps you streamline your design review process. On top of this, the ability to gather feedback in one centralized location helps expedite the turn over of your design. In a world of finite time, efficiency is key and Adobe XD has this gathering feedback feature perfected.