User Interface and User experience play very significant roles in the success of app development, especially in the aspect of mobile design.
The focus of user experience is the end-user. It tries to understand their needs, abilities, values, perception, and challenges as they interact with your mobile app, and makes conscious efforts towards improving the quality of the interaction.
Factors that influence UX
For user experience to be meaningful:
• The content must be unique and should be able to meet a need.
• Users should be able to navigate through your app and find useful information easily.
• The Mobile app must be easy to understand and use.
• Your app should have a desirable image, identity, and brand.
• The content of your app must be credible, and your users must believe what you tell them.
• It should be accessible to everyone, including those with disabilities.
Top app development companies are concerned with User Interface in Mobile Design because it focuses on preempting the users. It tries to anticipate the actions the user would love to take while interacting with their apps, to ensure that the interface has accessible, understandable and easy to use elements that would facilitate those actions.
The following are elements of User Interface
• Interaction Design deals with using well thought out behavior to create interactive systems.
• Visual Design aims at ensuring that the interface is aesthetically pleasing and is in line with the company’s goal.
• Content Strategy is focused on curating useful and careful thought out content.
• Accessibility focuses on how the physically challenged persons can benefit from the application.
There are certain principles of User Interface for mobile app development that have guided top app development companies to the path of success. The designers' community has widely accepted These principles. We trust that as you adopt these principles in your mobile design, you will get similar results.
User interface principles to follow in mobile app design service
The design layout must be consistent: The importance of consistency cannot be over-emphasised. The design of the various sections of the app must be coherent. Just like Netflix and Dropbox, your app should have great consistency in its layout.
Unambiguous interactive elements
All interactive design elements must be clearly depicted. Since users are going to make use of such elements at will, there should be no room for ambiguity. Otherwise, options hidden in menus can easily be forgotten. Even though studies have shown that obvious menu options are not good for mobile apps, it is expected that the key navigation elements should be visible.
Single Trial Learning Experience: People often think we are referring to user-friendliness when we talk about ‘Intuition’ in a mobile application. Intuition actually means the users understand the flow of the app without having to memorise the steps.
Options should be placed in such a way that first-time users can easily find their way around the app. They should be able to make inferences on the next line of action.
Anticipate and respond to Queries:
Your app must be able to anticipate the actions and queries of users and attend to them as quickly as possible. For example, when users tap the ‘download’ button, they want to know whether the process has begun, is delayed or has failed. There also want to know how long it will take for the download to be successful. Most times, the users are kept in oblivion while the ‘download’ is going on and sometimes they do not even know when it is completed. Great UI design suggests that the user is notified of the status of his action. ‘Gmail’ is a great example of such design that anticipates and solves users’ problems. It shows you the status of your mail: Message sent successfully, mail not delivered, mail saved to draft, file downloading, etc.
Layered User Experience:
The User Experience of your app should be layered. All the features of your app should not be exposed at the same time but should rather unfold as the user attempts to discover more about the app. This way, the user will be more interested in the app and stay longer on it.
WhatsApp is a great example of apps with layered UX that users discover new and exciting features as they delve deeper.
Users prefer the in-app search feature of apps because it helps to improve the usability of apps. In fact, users derive more pleasure and satisfaction in apps with the intuitive in-app search.
Below are predefined search patterns that will make the in-app search feature more intuitive for and indispensable to users.
1. Recent Search: This search type enhances the usability of your app by saving all the recently searched keywords are saved. Anytime the user attempts to use the search field, a list of these saved keywords will pop-up.
2. Autocomplete pattern: As the name implies, this search type makes life easy for the users by completing the letter of the keyword. It also suggests the complete words or phrases based on previous search or intuition. Finally, it saves all the searched words.
3. Dynamic Filtering: This search pattern is different from Auto Complete in the sense that it uses the keyword on your screen to filter data. Meaning, it makes suggestions to suit the keyword you typed.
4. Search Criteria Form: is a flexible search form, which provides search options in boxes for users to choose from. This search pattern allows the user to search for what he wants based on certain preset criteria.
In this time and age of smartphones, typing can become an easy activity or a difficult one, depending on the keyboard. You need to make user input a seamless process for your users by ensuring that your app opens the most suitable iteration of the keyboard. Your app must also be able to automatically correct, capitalise and complete sentences and phrases when necessary.
Take advantage of the real potential of the mobile platform
There are certain hardware specifications and features on mobiles devices that would further enhance the functionality of your mobile app if fully utilised. They include front camera, fingerprint unlocking, GPS, high-resolution HD display, gyroscope and many others.
The User Interface of your app must take advantage of them.
When these principles are implemented in the UI mobile design process, the result will be an excellent layout and of course, a great user experience such that within a few seconds of using your app, the end-user would literally fall in love with it.
It should be noted that user interface is not just aimed at attracting the user to your app, it is also useful in ensuring that you retain those users in the long-run.
Harnil Oza, CEO, Hyperlink Infosystem
Image search: Shutterstock/nenetus