Hierarchy of a (digital) products needs

You are a product designer, developer, writer, information architect, etc. and somebody asks you “Is your expertise here important?”, you will answer “Sure, because it makes xyz better.”.

But how important are you for the success of a product? Or maybe asked better: When are you important to a product?

The following pyramid depicts the hierarchy of a product’s needs (borrowed from Maslow). Which aspects are totally necessary, which are useful and which just icing on the digital cake?

Pyramid depicting the needs of a digital product


Why is access more important than utility?

If you have now possibility to use a product, how can it be of utility to you?

Why is the base called “access” and not accessibility?

Accessibility is a broad topic but recently it is very much biased towards disability. I wanted to make sure that people don’t misunderstand.

Your thoughts?

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