How design affects the success of a mobile app
Application design is not just a set of beautiful pictures.
Each interface element reflects the essence of the product and solves a specific problem: it attracts and retains the user’s attention, arouses interest and positive emotions, provides the audience with maximum convenience and encourages them to perform targeted actions.
Our services includes:
- Design concept development.
- Creation of UI/UX design.
- Prototyping, interface testing.
Quality design of the mobile interface is one of the main criteria by which users evaluate the application.
Development of UI/UX design of a mobile application
What is a mobile application interface? This concept includes two components - the appearance of the product and the way the user interacts. The audience expects to receive not only an attractive but also a convenient, intuitive, and useful tool for solving problems. The role of a designer goes far beyond creating a beautiful visual. The specialist analysis designs the interface works with the application structure, optimizes the functionality - and only after that begins the project's visual design.
Creating UX Design
To create a UX design is to work out the application’s structure, navigation, and functionality to provide convenience for the user. At this stage, it is necessary to have a formed portrait of the target audience and understand its psychology – what it needs, what it expects from the application, and how behavioral factors manifest themselves. Based on this, we highlight the basic principles of User Experience Design:
- an intuitive interface that new users can easily understand;
- logical and simple structure;
- optimal functionality with which a person can solve his problems;
- thoughtful chains for the implementation of various user scenarios;
- the simple paths from entering the application to performing targeted actions.
At this stage, we do interface prototyping, create the application structure as a whole and each screen separately, develop interaction scenarios with the program, and reproduce all possible user reactions. In the final version, there should be no inconvenient elements, intricate “mazes”, and incomprehensible functions. For example, for a food delivery application or an online store, the user should quickly and easily understand the assortment and go to the order form.
Development of user flow diagrams
User-Flow is a flowchart that displays the application’s algorithm. The traditional method of developing flowcharts is usually used: rectangles are screens, rhombuses are checks for conditions, and arrows connect elements and show the direction of action. Drawing flowcharts gives a visual representation of the application and helps to solve such problems:
- form the correct structure and competently compare it with the functionality of the application;
- evaluate and optimize each user scenario;
- eliminate errors in the logic of user actions, detect problems with entering/exiting zones;
- build and implement the shortest and easiest way to perform targeted actions;
- optimize the number of screens;
- add the missing sections, without which the functionality of the application seems incomplete.
Wireframes is a sketch, diagrams, or skeletons of the structure of the application screens without detailing the elements.
The method allows schematically displaying how the screen will look and where the main components will be located – menus, buttons, headings, etc. We create wireframes quickly, so the designer can sort through dozens of options in the shortest possible time and choose the right one.
Sketches are not the final version of the structure yet, but it is better to coordinate and make the main conceptual decisions at this stage to avoid improvements and alterations in the future.
The sketch is created in black and white in the form of a “skeleton” without drawing design elements.
Creating a prototype
Based on the accepted draft solutions, a prototype reproduces the application’s structure, functionality, navigation, location of the target audience’s expectations, and the relationship between sections. At this stage, the abstract idea takes on a clearer shape, and the application logic becomes understandable and tangible. After approval, the UI designer works with the prototype, and the user interface elements take on colors and shapes.
Technically, we can create a prototype in two ways. The simplest is a static version with the reproduction of the structure of each screen separately. The most visual – an interactive prototype with clickable elements. We can use the first way for simple applications with a typical structure and obvious logic. The second one is for complex projects with wide functionality and a unique structure. We use interactive prototyping in our work in the most informative and effective way.
We create the clickable, interactive prototype using software like Figma, Invision, Principle, Protopie, Framer, etc. The prototype’s complexity level can vary from a general demonstration of basic user scenarios to full reproduction of micro-interactions, including animation, transitions, and visual effects. We can do the drawing of prototype screens schematic or detailed.
UI design development
All decisions should be beautifully and attractively packaged during the UX research phase. To do this, you need to create a UI design – the appearance of the user interface ( User Interface ). The designer works on the visualization:
- selects fonts and color palettes;
- creates the appearance of buttons, icons, backgrounds, menus, forms, and navigation elements;
- creates visual effects, animation, and transitions;
- renders all application screens in detail.
The result of the work is full-color digital design layouts of screens, which will submit for layout. At this stage, the mobile application acquires the final form by which users will evaluate it. UI and UX have inextricably linked design elements. It is undesirable to separate them and work with them separately. One team works on creating the UI/UX interface – only this approach allows you to get a holistic, optimized, effective product that meets the target audience’s expectations.
Why is prototyping before design important?
The prototype demonstrates how the application works. The client sees exactly whether the project meets his expectations. The customer and the developer hear and understand each other better, communicate more substantively and find common solutions easier.
If necessary, you can easily make changes, eliminate errors, resolve controversial issues, and eliminate costly improvements at later stages. It eliminates unnecessary costs of funds and time and reduces the overall cost and duration of development.
The prototype allows you to test the application and see it through the eyes of the user. At this stage, inconvenient moments are often found that can be quickly eliminated. Testing is carried out on a "live" prototype - in a clickable web environment, which is not a full-fledged application but allows you to see the weak and strong points of the product.
Prototyping allows you to evaluate the complexity of the work, highlight the stack of technologies used and calculate the correct cost of creating a complex design.
Mobile app design development
We develop mobile application design in several stages. Technical drawing of graphic elements is only a small part of a complex process. Our work is based on business analytics, the study of the target audience and competitors.
We formulate the main purpose of the application, the problems it solves, the results the customer wants to achieve.
We find out which style corresponds to the direction of the business and what is relevant in this area today. We study the design of applications with a high rating in the field, evaluate their pros and cons, and find the direction in which you can stand out from the competition.
We determine the target audience's age range, gender, interests, type of activity, hobbies, communication style, behavioral factors, and other parameters. We create a general design concept focusing on user preferences.
We design user scenarios, create a Client Journey Map, and determine how the audience will interact with the elements of the mobile application and what ways to reach the target actions. These routes should be clear, short, and without distracting details.
Based on the decisions, we move on to creating a prototype reproducing the application's principle. Prototyping allows adjusting the structure and functionality before writing code.
We think over the design style and choose the color scheme, fonts, and the location of the interface elements. We draw the appearance of screens in graphic editors. This stage aims to create an original visual image that is interesting and attractive to users.
App design cost
How much does it cost to design an app? This is one of the first questions we hear from clients. The cost of design services is calculated individually after the analysis of the terms of reference and depends on many factors:
What tasks should the program solve, for what purpose it is created and how much it affects the business.
What options should be available to users, whether it is necessary to provide for further expansion and scaling of the product.
Whether it is necessary to use complex animated objects, 3D graphics, unique design elements.
How quickly you need to implement the project, how many employees need to be involved in the development.
Order UX/UI design services
attract more target audience?
Mobile application will help you achieve these goals!
Differences in app design for iOS and Android
When developing interface design, developers use iOS and Android guidelines. Each operating system offers its guidelines – documents with recommendations for application design developers. Following these tips, we solve two problems at once: we provide convenience for users and ensure that the application meets the requirements of the chosen platform – all of this positively affects further promotion.
Projects developed according to guidelines comply with generally accepted basic standards that users of a particular operating system use. When users download each new application, they do not have to get used to the arrangement of menus and buttons again, they interact with the mobile product intuitively.
Apple and Android Design Requirements differ, but common unbreakable principles exist: applications should be convenient, intuitive, and valuable for the audience.
Google’s Material Design Principles
The Material Design guideline we use for creating Android applications. Google gives clear recommendations for designing buttons, icons, animation elements, visual effects, and transitions. A few key points:
- Tactile elements. The interface is assembled from layers that can compare to “digital paper”.
- Shadows. To make the elements seem real and tangible, they are superimposed on each other and visually located at different heights. Shadows, the central aspect of spatial navigation in Android applications, help to enhance this effect.
- Print style. Graphic elements are created on the principle of printed matter, like magazines and newspapers.
- Animation. Any animated details and visual effects are understandable, meaningful, and comply with the laws of physics, which makes the interface as realistic as possible and involves the user in active interaction.
- Navigation. Not all Android smartphones have a gesture control system, so the application interface is created for button control.
Principles of Apple Human Interface for iOS
The Human Interface Guidelines are Apple’s guidelines for developing iOS apps. Interface elements have a more complex design compared to Android. Basic principles:
- The interface should be as concise as possible and responsive to user actions.
- When drawing buttons, icons, backgrounds, gradients, blur effects, and “air” transitions are used.
- Attention is paid to micro-interactions, which can accompany sounds, vibration, and animation.
- It is not recommended to use useless effects that take time but are of no value to the user.
- The design considers the principle of gesture control, familiar to users of Apple gadgets.
The interface should correspond to the purpose of the application: minimalism is welcomed in business applications and games – a combination of bright colors and complex animation.
The differences between Apple Human Interface and Google Material Design relate to many things:
- control mechanics (buttons, gestures), navigation bar;
- showing notifications, action and cancel buttons;
- search line, context menu, tab bar;
- icon sizes, the minimum size of the click area;
- system fonts, screen scrolling effects and other options.
All these can easily take these principles into account in developing native applications designed for only one operating system. For cross-platform (hybrid) projects, additional decisions are made to display the application correctly in both operating systems on iPhones and Android smartphones. In such cases, you have to make certain compromises so that the final product does not contradict the requirements of Apple and Google.
Order high-quality mobile application design
Professional development of a mobile application interface is a mandatory step in launching a successful project. Good design has many benefits:
- it attracts the attention of users, and makes the product memorable for the target audience;
- distinguishes the application from competitors;
- serves as a tool with which the user solves his problems;
- plays an image role, and helps to form a loyal audience;
- strengthens confidence in the product, company, and brand;
- increases promotion efficiency;
- makes the application more popular, and the number of downloads grows, and the profit from monetization increases.
How do you develop an application interface that is popular and profitable? The best solution is to entrust this task to the professionals of the KitApp team. We do turnkey mobile development, implement projects of any complexity, and use the latest tools and technologies for interface design. You can see examples of our work in the website portfolio.
The cost of design development depends on the specifics of the application, its structure, and its functionality. We can offer the best solution for any budget – from simple minimalist options to large-scale exclusive projects with many complex elements. Our applications are always unique, modern, and effective.