Whatever you’re building is hard to use. It’s not for you of course, because you’ve been working with it since forever, but it is for everyone else. Want proof?
Pick a tool for something you’ve never done, like a CRM or a mail tool or something else way out of your comfort zone. Try to use it. Notice the jargon? Notice how some things seem not to make any sense?
It depends on the tool of course. Recently I started using Basecamp and it just makes sense. I haven’t struggled with it for a moment. On the other hand, when setting up this newsletter I used Mailchimp and boy was I lost. Audience, Campaign, Conversations... I’m not a marketer so to me each of these options was confusing. What is it? What it’s for? Do I need it, how do I use it for a newsletter?
This is exactly how your users feel. They have something they need to do in their mind and unless you use their lingo, you will be confusing them. If they’re not heavily invested in your tool, they could give it up altogether.
So if you want your tool to be successful you need to look at it with the beginner's mind: what is the minimal UI I need to show to let my users do X?
Sure over time they will ask for more advanced stuff and maybe your tool needs to have an advanced mode. But it never should be the default. No one is born an expert.
Photo by Nadine Shaabana on Unsplash