In the world of software and web development, UI and UX aren’t just buzzwords, it’s an entire discipline with a strong design focus. UI/UX design is what makes an application enjoyable and intuitive for a user. Without it, software and applications would be just stock web elements and simple white web pages. The UI/UX design process is a critical component of product development.
UI stands for user interface, while UX is user experience. If your startup builds your product with an understanding of the power of UI/UX, your product will be more polished, branded, and effective at convincing your users to stick around. The UX design process is critical in creating a powerful connection between the product and the end user.
What is User Interface Design?
User Interface design concerns any and all aspects of an application that a user experiences and interacts with. User interface designers are focused on creating interface elements that are easy to understand and easy to use. Good UI design is consistent, simple, and intuitive.
Interface elements that user interface designers are responsible for designing include:
- Navigational elements – sliders, search bars, tags, icons, menus, links, pagination
- Container elements – accordion and popout menus
- Information elements – notifications, progress bars, loading icons, tooltips, messages, modal windows
- Input elements – buttons, toggles, text fields, password fields, date pickers, radio buttons, checkboxes
What is User Experience Design?
The concept of user experience was coined by an Apple employee in the 1990s who focused on building user-friendly applications designed around the user’s needs. It would be years before the tech industry realized the full value of a solid UX design.
UX is about considering the total user experience. The UX design process is not focused on aesthetics. Instead, user experience designers focus on creating seamless, high-quality, relevant experiences that speak to users. Designers integrate branding and function while addressing user pain points and needs.
User interface design and user experience design are intimately related. One doesn’t exist without the other. The UX design process typically comes first, and later UI designers can create UI elements and other product aesthetics around the UX design.
Principles of UI/UX
Talented UX and UI designers will be intimately familiar with the core principles of good design. Here are a few of the key principles of UI/UX to integrate throughout your design process:
- Consistency – build your app with consistent UI elements and process flows
- Accessibility – use accessible fonts, alt text, subtitles, and visual contrast so everyone can enjoy your product
- Simplicity – users don’t have the time or patience to learn to navigate complex menus or UI elements, stick to simple proven design choices. Don’t reinvent the wheel if you don’t need to.
- Intuitive – users should know how to jump in and use your product at first glance, intuitive design ensures users don’t get lost and confused
- Balance and Scale – visually balanced UI with smart scaling is more appealing to users
- Visual Hierarchy – arrange elements in order of importance so the user’s eye falls on the most important components first
4 Reasons to Prioritize the UI/UX Design Process
1. Builds Customer Loyalty
From the moment a user opens the app until they close it, they interact with UI/UX elements and assess their experiences. Their impression of your app determines if they are likely to come back. When customers find value in your product and have a good experience interacting with your brand, you can turn a one-time user into a loyal customer.
Your brand wants to retain as many users as possible because loyal customers are 50% more likely to buy a new product release and spend 30% more than a new customer. Customer retention is the path to a strong revenue stream and growing customer base. Humans are emotional beings and the connection that they have with your product matters.
2. Makes a Good Idea into a Great Product
It really doesn’t matter how good your startup’s idea is if your app is poorly executed. Great UI/UX can take your product to the next level by delivering custom user experiences with branded UI elements. The UX design process iterates on early ideas to find a user experience design that flows with limited friction between the user and your product.
3. Enhances SEO and Product Discovery
If you are building a web app, then UI/UX is more important than you might first think. It’s not just your user experiences at stake but your entire SEO strategy. These days search engines care about a lot more than just keywords.
When Google indexes your site, it’s looking for elements that signal the user experience is enjoyable and intelligently designed. If your web app scores poorly against Google’s algorithms, your site will likely rank poorly on searches. That means you’ll have a more difficult time driving traffic to your app and attracting new users.
4. Add Value While Eliminating Pain Points
Well-designed UI/UX adds value to your product. Your app should already be delivering on its unique value proposition, but more than likely, there is a similar product offering on the market. Your product will compete better with high-value user experiences and seamless user interfaces.
Identify pain points that your competitors haven’t addressed and make sure that your app design doesn’t make those same mistakes. Each pain point you can eliminate from your product will be interpreted by users as adding value. For example, if your competitor has a clunky abrasive signup process, you can appeal to users by solving this issue and offering a straightforward, intuitive signup flow with minimal steps.
Get Help From Professionals
Modern Launch is a software development agency with a team of professionals with experience creating beautiful custom applications and winning user experiences. We can help you develop your vision with our strong eye and passion for UI/UX design. Our team knows how to develop apps with the end user in mind. Whether you are building a mobile app or a custom software solution, Modern Launch can help.
We hope you found this article helpful. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to us.
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