Originally published September 27th, 2017, updated February 13th, 2019.
Most of the people using digital media are either on mobile phones or desktops. Both platforms have the majority of digital users. Desktops are great for quick access to web pages and mobile phones are great to create engagement. We cannot stress enough on the popularity of mobiles and mobile related technologies, though. With this advancement, people are now looking to spend less time to get more done without having any issues to deal with.
Mobile applications are one of the biggest reasons why people are going mobile. In 2017, the number of app downloads was 197 billion and is said to reach 353 billion in the year 2021. People are rushing into mobile apps because of its functionality and the ability to get things done quickly. But what makes mobile apps better?
UI UX app design is one of the answers. The design of an app enhances the user experience which is the biggest factor that ensures the success of an app. Majority of users prefer an app that has simple yet elegant designs and has good performance. The UI UX design for mobile apps should not be such that it slows the performance of the app. This will result in a frustrated user eventually uninstalling the app.
To understand the importance of mobile app UI/UX design, let us understand both the terms well.
What is UI?
The abbreviation UI stands for User Interface. It is the way through which users can interact with any mobile apps. User interface design for mobile applications is aimed towards easy, enjoyable and effective interactions between users and the app. UI in IT is any device that allows users to interact with monitors, screens or mobile devices. The primary goal of UI is to provide the best interaction possible.
What is UX?
UX stands for User Experience. The whole idea of UX is to create a system that provides the best experience to the users. The aim of UX mobile app design is to turn customers into loyal customers by providing a positive experience to them. UX is responsible for a users journey through the mobile app or website which ultimately decides the success of the business.
Mobile app UI UX design is always put together as they are complementary to each other. For an app to be successful the UI UX app design must be the best.
What are the Deliverables of UI and UX?
The work of any UI/UX designer has many phases. During the UI and UX designing process, various deliverables are created for the clients. These deliverables are created for reasons like better communication with clients, documentation or presenting the ideas in a proper way. Both UI and UX have their separate deliverables, let’s take a look.
A. UI deliverables
Mood boards are used for presenting innovative ideas in a way that everyone understands it. It helps the clients understand the app idea that the designer will be working on.
Visual designs will help understand the effects of elements in a design. The effects of elements like photography, typography, space, colours, layouts, images, etc. are better understood with visual designs.
Another one of the UI deliverables is the dynamic prototypes. Prototypes help in improving the overall functioning of the app as well as making improvement as and when needed. With dynamic prototypes, UI can be built as per the clients’ desire.
B. UX deliverables
Competitive analysis report
The competitive analysis report is created to measure the level of competition your app has. All the efforts go into vain if the app is in a highly competitive market or if it is not prepared to beat the competitors. With a competitive analysis report, the strength and weakness of the competitor’s app can be found out.
Designers have to make sure the client understand what their customers need and expect from the products. Creating a buyer persona not only helps in understanding customer behaviour but also in communicating the same to clients. UX process involves user research to learn the behavioural pattern.
User journeys, experience maps and user flows
Experience maps showcase users overall behaviour towards a product. The expectations, time spent, reactions, thoughts, needs, etc. are all displayed in the experience maps.
User journeys or user flows are specific steps taken by the user to interact at different stages of the product. These can be the current interactions or potential interaction with a product.
Interactive prototyping is another one of the deliverables of UX. Rudimentary prototyping saves a lot of time and efforts and works well enough to get the job done. The prototypes help in demonstrating how the actual product will work once it’s fully developed. It also helps the designer communicate the ideas better.
Why UI/UX in Mobile Apps is Important?
To know the importance of mobile app UI/UX design is a must. Most developers create an app with great performance but fail to focus on the designing which leads to the downfall of the app. The balance between the functionality and UI UX design of an app is hard to keep but that’s what is needed to be done.
To answer the question, ‘Why UI/UX in mobile apps is important?’, let us look at the pointers below:
A saying goes, ‘A good teacher is the one that grabs and holds the attention of the students and then teaches the lessons.’. This saying is very apt for mobile app UI UX designs. The designs grab the attention of the users and ensure they spend as much time on the app as possible. However, the users should be able to understand the designs and navigation well enough to stick around for the long term.
Creates a good impression
For a startup or any small business, good UI UX is a way to create the first impression. When users visit your app, they should be hooked to it immediately so that they come back for it again and again. A good app has higher usage time and this can be done with the app’s UI UX design.
Get featured in app stores
Whether a mobile app is good or not is determined by how many users like it. The ratings and reviews by satisfied users will bring your mobile app at the top lists. To get your app featured in Play Store or App Store, make sure the users get a good UI UX. getting featured in the top lists of any category will automatically bring more traction to your app.
Get loyal customers
Attractive apps have more users and it’s a fact. Apps like Instagram, Facebook, Candy Crush, etc. have great UI/UX which has drawn millions of users to them. The satisfaction that comes from great user experience is what makes users loyal. Word of mouth is another reason why UI/UX in mobile apps is important.
Now that you have seen the importance of mobile app UI/UX design, let’s move further into the concept. It’s a common assumption that if you have mastered to design mobile app UX and UI then you don’t need tips for improvement. However, there’s no harm in going through some great tips for UI UX designing.
Use Conventional Elements
Using familiar elements in the app will save time for users. They can quickly learn the app without getting confused. Elements like buttons, icons, colors and symbols should be designed in the way it’s designed in most apps. The quicker users learn to operate the app, the higher will be the chances of liking the app.
It is very important for the design to be uniform across all the windows. The uniformity shows the quality of work put in the UI UX designing of the app. Not only with icons or buttons but the colors and patterns should also be the same across all media.
Employ the Right UI and UX designer
If you are focusing on the mobile app user interface design and experience then working with the experts is highly recommended. You can also outsource app development for your app from an expert app development agency to make sure the UI UX designs are on point. The UI UX designers should understand all the end-to-end user interaction and incorporate them within the app.
Make it as interactive as possible
An interactive app is better than a non-interactive one and that’s a fact. When you allow users to interact with the app, it creates a connection between them. Interactive apps give freedom to users to navigate themselves through different windows.
Don’t hamper the speed of the app
The speed of the app is just as important as the design. Startups do make this mistake by thinking the app only needs its appearance to attract users. But the truth is, the functioning of the app is just as important. The mobile app needs to be speed while having a good mobile application interface design.
Keep it simple and don’t complicate things
If a feature can be put in a simple way there is no need to overdo it. The users will appreciate the simplicity just as much as the overall app. Complicating designs leave app users either confused or furious and we don’t want either of those. It is also seen that apps with simple design have more users than complicated ones.
Keep the focus on limited things
Often the UI UX design of apps focuses on so many elements at the same time that the entire user experience turns bad. If too much is going on on the screen then that won’t let the user focus on the content of the app. Overcrowding content on the screen is another way to quickly lose users.
The latest UI UX design trends for 2019
To get started with the best mobile app UI UX designing, let’s look at what trends 2019 will follow. The UI UX design services by mobile app development companies usually follow the trends strictly which makes them a great choice for app designing. But if you are doing it yourself then these 2019 UI UX design trends will help you.
The animation in apps or web pages makes them more visually appealing. It connects with customers more than any other design. Designers are using this tool to create a positive impact on the users with the help of meaningful animations. Earlier, things were simple with flat logos, icons, buttons, etc. but now animated buttons, icons, and even logos are happening. In 2019, the animation is going to be one of the trends for UI UX designing.
Digital illustrations for the web
Custom digital illustrations are the new trend in 2019. These illustrations are mostly used on web interfaces. It adds colours, designs and makes the information more interesting. Blogs and service websites use these illustrations to beautify their website and present simple information in a fancy way.
3D will be used in interfacing to give a more impactful design. It is already being used in games and movies and works perfectly. But the mobile industry can achieve it too by combining animation and 3D designs. Skeuomorphism is going to return as a trend in 2019.
The split screen trend is one of the hottest trends in 2019. The idea of actively using two screens together, whether on websites or mobile phones, is amazing! The trend has come back after a short break and is looking more alive than ever. Split screen in mobile allows more user interaction all the while giving aesthetically appealing visuals.
Google Home and Alexa have taken over the voice assistant world. These two technologies are being used by people to get anything and everything done. Voice searches are becoming more and more popular and by 2020, 50% of the searches will be voice-based. Users are preferring buttonless options to do their everyday tasks.
Fonts that will fit any writing space will have another place in the 2019 UI UX design trends. Earlier, inserting text in writing spaces had limitations to adjustment. It also made designers send multiple files for the font designs used. But variable fonts are a great solution for that as it only needs one file for any design.
This was our take on the mobile app UI and UX designs and its importance. If you wish to know more contact our team of designers at Appinventiv.
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