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The Ultimate Guide To Improving Mobile App UX

Elevating Mobile App UX

No matter the industry, the consumer or end-user generally has the ultimate power. Businesses and organizations, mobile app developers included, undoubtedly want to serve and gain as many customers or end-users as possible. Keeping this goal in mind highlights the importance of delivering an optimized user experience. To further this point, users will abandon mobile apps that deliver a poor mobile app UX within the first 10 minutes of use.

Mobile app design is, in and of itself, a beast of a task. Designing the user experience is no walk-in-the-park though. There are many aspects that a UX design team must consider when approaching the UX design. However, there is such a wide variety of elements to consider, it’s daunting to go into mobile app UX design without any guidance.

Therefore, successful UX designs stem from an understanding of the various aspects that need to be considered. The following guide outlines four pillars of UX design.

The Design Process

To begin the mobile app UX design process, there needs to be some semblance of an action plan to follow. Building a workflow for mobile app design helps streamline and standardize this process. The first step in realizing an idea for a mobile app is through the development of an MVP or minimum viable product.

The MVP serves multiple functions. One of the main purposes of an MVP is to provide a sample of what the mobile app will be to various focus groups. These focus groups then take a trial of the mobile app. From this trial, garner feedback that informs the rest of the mobile app design.

Through the testing process, mobile app designers gain valuable insights into the features that have been included in the MVP that users experience and trial. These insights will likely apply to a variety of elements such as the beginnings of the visual design, the actual features that are included, and the way the app addresses the problem that it is supposed to solve.

This a very important note to make. Any mobile app, no matter how big or small in scale, should aim to solve a problem. The way that the mobile app solves the problem needs to be evident in the MVP. Otherwise, focus groups, early adopters, and other test groups won’t be able to provide feedback on the actual core-functionality of the mobile app.

Elements of UX

Developing a strong MVP that yields positive feedback from test groups begins with the very first design stages. That includes understanding the actual framework of a successful and functional mobile app. Understanding the skeleton of a mobile app allows mobile app developers to ensure a design is comprehensive.

Two of these five core elements of mobile app UX design are: information architechture, and interaction design. These two aspects together organize the information of the mobile app in such a way that makes it accesible to the end user, and defines the various user-interactions within the mobile app.

These two functions are vital to building a high quality user experience. Information architechture is the way that information is both organized, and accessed within the mobile app. In other words, where do users need to navigate in order to perform certain activites within the mobile application.

Defining the information architechture will be important in building an easy to use and intutive mobile app. The interaction design, on the other hand, applies to the elements of the design with which users actually interact.

These aspects range from the text displayed, to the various symbols and any visual representations used (including brand logos), and other user-specific elements like device-preference. All-in-all the interaction design is a vital aspect of the mobile app UX.

Features to Include for a Strong Mobile App UX

In building a mobile app then, it’s important to identify where to start. This often happens on the back-end of things. The actual coding brings to life features in the mobile app.

There’s no need to reinvent the wheel here. Using history as a teacher, there is a library of features to include in the mobile-app design that are proven to benefit the user experience. Pulling from this pre-existing library will start your mobile app design off on the right foot. Ensuring the inclusion of important features.

Some of these features will streamline a process, while others just emphasize simplicity and ease-of-use. Therefore, these features include: platform-specific-design, a simple and swift onboarding process that users can get through without much difficulty, short forms, avenues for feedback, a live chat feature, and helpful navigation systems.

Platform Specific Design

Contrary to what might seem most intuitive, mobile app designers should build the initial design with a native-platform in mind. However, it becomes crucial to then create a responsive-design.

In other words, a responsive design will naturally convert itself to be optimal for any device and any screen size. designing apps with a responsive design is the industry standard, and significantly broadens the marketability of your mobile app. Responsive design also ensures that user experience is consistent between and across different devices.

Swift Onboarding

Users want to get to the crux of the matter. Dancing around introductory screens and a convoluted on-boarding process is almost guaranteed to send users running for the hill. While it is important to bring new users into the community that your mobile app has developed, it is also important to prioritize the time that users spend on your app.

Bogging down the user experience with a hefty or unnecessarily long onboarding process shows users a disregard for their precious time, and will send them to a competitor. Plus, the faster you get the user to their goal, the more likely they are to come back time and time again.

Short Forms

Gathering information from your mobile app users is just as important as delivering the actual functionality of the mobile app. In order to weave information forms into the mobile app that are both natural, and user-friendly; forms should be designed to be concise, and yield valuable insights into user demographics.

Understanding the most popular demographic that uses a mobile app will further inform marketing strategies, and other important aspects regarding the distribution of the mobile app.

Navigation

The navigation bar is a point of much debate in mobile app design. The two main types of navigation menus are: hamburger, or kabob. Both are viable and come with their own strong points.

Regardless of the style, mobile apps only need one main navigation menu. That way users know where to look.

Current Mobile App UX Design Trends

In addition to everything else that’s been covered, designers also need to consider current trends in mobile app design when developing a mobile app. The trends of mobile app design are forever in flux. Some of the popular design trends today, could very well fizzle out within the next few years.

However, keeping up to date with the latest in mobile app design trends will not only inform the initial design, but can also inform and direct future iterations of the mobile app. That ensures that future versions of the app include updates to keep the app relevant and aesthetically pleasing for each and every user on the app.

Start Developing UX with NS804

NS804 is the premier mobile app developer of the everyday person. Making mobile app development services more accessible than ever before. NS804 will help bring your mobile app idea into reality. Or, if you’re a do-it-yourself type of person, make sure to check back at NS804 for more valuable information regarding how developers can optimize the user experience.

How UX Fits Into Mobile App Design

Mobile App Design and UX

Indeed mobile app design is no simple-feat. There are many elements to consider at the onset of developing a mobile app. Generally, beyond the function of the app itself, designers answer questions like, “how will the app feel?” or “what will the mobile app experience be like?”. These are questions that are addressed through a variety of components known as the user experience, or UX.

Firstly, components that make up the user experience include visual design and usability. Further, these components break down into a wide variety of elements. Specifically, the visual design incorporates symbols, logos, the color scheme, and how much contrast there is. Meanwhile, usability refers to more functional aspects of a mobile app.

Mobile app usability refers to a series of components that simply make the app more user friendly and intuitive.

Visual Design

The visual design of a mobile app is any and everything that appears on the screen. In other words, the visual aspect of the mobile app is one of the most critical. Visual design is the very first aspect of your mobile app that new and potential users will interact with. Hence, it’s also going to leave your users with their first impression of the app. Just like in life, it’s important that users walk away feeling good after their first interaction with your mobile application.

The visual design is also crucial because of the way it reinforces a brand. The app design should include an aesthetic that supplements the existing brand perception and further improves customer loyalty.

Usability in Mobile App Design

Usability is extremely critical in building a successful mobile app. This term refers to the way a mobile app operates. In other words, how the different functions of the application are utilized by the end-user.

There is a variety of important factors that create usability within a mobile app. Developing a strong information architecture is one of the foundational building blocks of a mobile app with a high usability score. Information architecture is the way that information is organized and accessed within the mobile app. In other words, information architecture defines the operations used to access information stored throughout the mobile app.

To streamline this part of the design process, some mobile app designers will develop from templates, or use low-code tools that shorten the overall project length. Whether you’re coding entirely yourself or using the help of low-code tools, however, crafting an intuitive and user-friendly information architecture will surely elevate your mobile app to the next level.

Perfect the UX in Your Mobile App Design

Nobody is perfect, but we can all strive for perfection. Design a mobile app that delivers the best possible user experience with the help of the experts at NS804. NS804 is the premier source for information on user experience, information architecture, and everything mobile app development, dedicated to making mobile app development services more accessible than ever before. Vist NS804 today to start realizing and creating your dream app of tomorrow.

How User Experience Affects Your Mobile App

The Effects of User Experience

Mobile apps don’t exist for the sake of the designer. Rather, mobile apps exist to serve a function. That function, however, can be virtually anything. Although, many of the successful mobile apps that exist aim to solve a specific problem for the end-user. The important note to take there is that mobile apps exist for the end-user. Therefore, optimizing the user experience is a priority.

The term user experience can refer to quite a variety of elements and aspects that a user encounters within a mobile app, or any application. These elements include visual design, interactive components, information architecture, and more. Because the UX is such a vast category when it comes to the design of a mobile app, its impact is also critical.

There are many reasons to prioritize user experience in mobile app development. From improving user-retention rates to a stronger user-acquisition strategy, the benefits of a positive UX speak for themselves.

User Retention

As is mentioned above, one of the key benefits of building and developing a high-quality user-experience within your mobile app is higher rates of user-retention. This is another pillar argument for prioritizing user-experience in mobile app development, as gaining end-users is the ultimate goal. After all, mobile apps don’t exist for the sake of the designers.

The mobile app market is super-saturated. That means that users have endless options to solve the same problem. Therefore, new users who have a bad experience with your mobile app, are very likely to jump ship and download a competitor’s app.

User Acquisition

In the same vein as user retention, is user acquisition. User acquisition actually comes before user retention in the mobile app lifecycle, as it’s the process through which new users first learn about, and join your mobile app. Since the visual design is one of the very first aspects of a mobile app that new users interact with; it makes sense that visual design elements are a significant contributor to user experience.

Build intuitive and user-friendly mobile apps that are aesthetically pleasing in order to reinforce your user-acquisition strategy.

Increased Efficiency

Beyond attracting new users or retaining existing users, strong user experience offers other benefits as well. Since a large component of UX is related to information architecture and usability, this furthers the argument for prioritizing well-designed user experience.

Building a strong information architecture means designing the mobile app in such a way that users get to their end-goal faster. This improves the efficiency that mobile app users experience.

Developing efficiency into a mobile app shows users that you respect them and their busy schedules.

A Final Thought

User experience has a wide variety of effects on mobile app success. From improving user retention rates, and developing a more powerful user-acquisition strategy, user experience is truly the backbone of any mobile app.

NS804 is the mobile app developer of the everyday person. Dedicated to making mobile app development services more accessible than ever before, and sharing the years of knowledge and expertise we’ve gathered. Visit NS804 today and start realizing your mobile app dreams.

Mobile UX Best Practices for User Retention

Best Practices to Maximize User Retention

Businesses operate through people. In other words, employees, customers, organizational leaders, and even industry thought-leaders. The list goes on and on, but nonetheless, businesses rely on the people they serve. For mobile app developers, the most important type of person is, arguably, the end-user. Hence why user retention is sort of the ‘holy grail’ when it comes to mobile app development.

User retention is critical for mobile app developers because it is the metric that defines the total average userbase of the mobile app. User acquisition is another important metric for mobile app developers to track, but a higher acquisition rate does not always equate to a similar retention rate.

In the app store, user acquisition strategies are what will attract new first-time users. However, user retention strategies are what will keep those users returning to your mobile app time and time again.

Retention Strategies

Whether designing enterprise mobile apps, or consumer-facing mobile apps, retention strategies are crucial to keeping gained users happy. Retention tactics will vary slightly depending on some app-specific data. For instance, financial tracking and personal budgeting apps will have a drastically different user retention strategy than say, a dating app.

User Control

User control is one of the current trends in user experience that improves retention rates. Allowing the end-user more direct access and customization over the user experience is a good way to ensure that people are enjoying their time on the app. Developing a mobile app that allows users to customize their individual experience almost guarantees a positive user experience. In turn, this boosts user retention rates.

Additionally, allowing users to choose which, if any, notifications the mobile app delivers to their home screen has been shown to greatly reduce mobile-app deletions. More than ever before, users and consumers are prone to protect their privacy. Limiting the access of a mobile app can provide the level of trust consumers are looking for.

Swift Onboarding

Another pillar of strong mobile app UX is a swift onboarding process. Bringing new users into the world of the mobile app in an efficient and quick manner is a good way to immerse users in the actual application itself. Rather than spending valuable time forcing users to click through another set of screens, that time can be better allocated. Instead, new users can jump right into the heart of your mobile app.

A swift onboarding process also improves in-app efficiency and shows users respect for their already busy schedules. In turn, contributing to the comprehensive user experience.

Mobile App UX and User Retention

Retaining mobile app users is a difficult task in an era that offers consumers so many solutions to a single problem. Prioritizing the development of strong user experience is sure to mitigate fickle users prone to jumping ship, and improve your mobile app user retention rates.

For more information on how to build a successful user retention strategy visit NS804. NS804 is the premier source for everything mobile app development, from UX to back-end development, and even marketing. Visit NS804 today and start realizing your mobile app of tomorrow.

What Will Make The Users Happy? Five Key Elements Of Great UX Design

There are many elements of mobile app design that need to come together for an app to be successful. One of the most important ingredients to building a strong mobile app that attracts a massive user-base is UX. UX, or user-experience, defines the way users interact and engage with the mobile app.

A great UX is certainly the product of five distinct key aspects. The aspects laid out here compose the five pillars of user-experience design. In following the principles of these five pillars, or five key elements of UX, mobile apps are sure to be user-friendly. In addition to being intuitive and user-friendly, mobile apps should also be built with efficiency and beauty in mind.

The large mobile app market makes UX even more important. More competition forces companies to think about the end-user first. With the user experience driving the core of mobile app design, the companies that provide the best UX will rise above the rest. These companies will perform better in terms of brand perception, overall user base, and other valuable metrics.

In fact, Springboard has the users’ needs as the number-one priority in UX. This shows how important it is to think about the user first in UX design.

The Five Key Elements of UX

Jumping into the five key elements of UX, the pillars of user-experience are defined, and a clear theme develops. The five key elements of UX design are:

  • Information Architecture
  • Interaction Design
  • Usability
  • Prototyping
  • Visual Design

Breaking these five pillars down further, the core components of each individual aspect involved in creating an excellent UX can be identified, and optimized. Therefore, optimizing the entire UX process from top to bottom. In taking a closer look at each of these UX pillars, it becomes clear that they all share one common thread. In each of these elements, it’s clear that the end-user is the priority in UX.

Information Architecture:

Guiding users to the information they’re searching for. Assisting users in the effective completion of tasks. This is what information architecture (IA) is all about. Usability.Gov defines IA as, “the organizing, labeling, and structuring of content in an effective and sustainable way.”

Structuring content in UX design is really an art form. Designers must consider many aspects. Aspects such as information location, and process-flow. These two aspects of the user-experience will dictate a lot of design factors. Therefore, designers must understand things like where users will look for information. Additionally, designers will need to understand how users will want to get things done within the app.

Interaction Design:

Interaction design is exactly that. The design of the interactions between users and products. In other words, this relates to the way that users engage with a mobile app. These engagements can also be broken into five distinct categories:

  • Words: Words are obviously any text that appears to the user. However, this category also includes system-messages, content-labels, and any other written content.
  • Visual Representations: Visual representations can be anything from color-schemes, to integrated media, and of course custom-design. This also relates heavily to branding. Designers should make it a priority to align color schemes and mobile-app visuals with the brand.
  • Physical Objects/Space: The physical objects category relates to the way users interact with the mobile-app. In other words, the platform or medium: Laptop, smartphone, etc.
  • Time: Time is a little bit more abstract, but it refers to the evolution of media contained in the app, or software.
  • Behavior: Finally this relates to the actual functionality of the app. How do users use the app, and what reactions do they have while engaging with the app?

Usability in UX:

In simple terms, usability means putting the design to the test. This refers to the data-collection process that happens when a UX has been significantly developed, and is ready for some real user-feedback. This data highlights important insight on design decisions previously made.

As a UX designer it is important to be the champion of the people, so to speak. This includes pointing out flaws, or user-frustrations in mobile-app UX. After finalizing the first version of the UX, designers can employ a myriad of tactics to gain real user-feedback. Some of these tactics include conducting lab-based studies, one-on-one interviews, tele-surveys, and focus-groups.

The data and user-feedback collected from these various data-pools will be extremely valuable in the ultimate design of the mobile-app. This feedback should influence decision making moving forward, updates to the existing UX, and bring about edits that likely should have been included in the first iteration.

Additionally, user testing provides key insights into how to market the product or mobile-app, and user behavior.

Prototyping:

Furthering the feed-back and design-finalization process, prototyping is an excellent, and cheap way to test product viability. Releasing a prototype is a great starting point as it provides a place for iterations. One can incorporate stakeholder feedback, and get real input on the functionality of their design.

This also enlightens and emphasizes and of the user-feedback that was garnered earlier in the data-collection stage from focus-groups, one-on-one interviews, and other data-collection tactics. Not only does the prototype allow for users to give additional feedback, it also offers a strong representation of what works and doesn’t work in the current design.

Prior to this stage, many of the design choices were probably based on theory, rather than practicality. Between the usability testing, and the prototyping stages, designers and mobile-app publishers should start to gain a good idea of where their design stands, and what needs improving.

Visual Design:

This is likely what immediately comes to mind when most think about UX. Visual design is a crucial aspect of an excellent UX, as has already been covered, yet it’s still only one of the five pillars that make up the principles of excellent UX design. The purpose, however, of visual design in UX is to provide the user with visuals that are both engaging and informative.

Visual design is important as it can establish a reputation for the mobile-app, and customers will start to recognize that brand. Visual design can also be extremely influential in the marketplace as far as determining demand for a product or mobile app.

For a long while, it was thought that mobile-apps had to be designed with one aspect or the other, aesthetics or useability. However, recent studies have shown that the two are actually in a positive correlation. More simply stated: the easier a mobile-app is to use, the more room there is for incredible visual design. Vice versa, an incredible visual design can actually improve useability, and guide the user through the process-flow, while also providing an engaging and aesthetically pleasing experience.

In UX design there are simply loads of variables to consider. Following these five pillars of UX design will ensure that your mobile-app, website, or any other design is both efficient, and intuitive. Providing users with a superb experience that stands out from the competition should be every designers goal.

NS804 has experience designing apps in nearly every marketspace, for nearly every type of user. Dedicated to making mobile-app design services more accessible than ever before, get in touch with NS804 today and get the conversation about your mobile-app idea started. NS804 offers additional help in designing an optimal user-experience, and top-to-bottom mobile-app design services.