The terms User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) have been quite exploited in design and development roles today. It is important to note that while the skill sets and tools involved for both share the same knowledge base, the essentials of both UI and UX are not quite the same.
It is not possible to completely disassociate one of these disciplines from the other. During the development phase of an app, the UX design work undertakes a comprehensive outlook with a focus on effective optimization of the app. On the other hand, the UI design work mainly involves the design and the overall presentation of the product.
In brief, UX design ensures that users are able to perform all tasks across platforms and services while UI design provides a compelling interface through which the user interacts with the app. The UI/UX designers use their skills and work at various stages during the development of a project.
User Experience Design
What Is UX Design?
UX, commonly known as user experience, is the procedure of improving accessibility and interactivity of a product. As its name suggests, the primary concern of user experience is the overall experience of the user while using a product. It encompasses the personal feelings of a user before, during, and after their interaction with the mobile apps and services of a company. During the development of an app, the designer researches and gathers feedback from testers to resolve specific issues and provide better solutions. The products with efficient UX are most commonly simple and user-friendly.
Why Is UX Design Essential?
The UX design of a mobile app determines its longevity in the market. It is significant to convince the user that the mobile app is easy to use, provides value and fulfills their goals. The UX design eventually determines whether a user returns to the app, deletes it, or worse- gives it a poor rating.
What Makes Good UX Design?
A good UX design in mobile apps is determined by how much time a user spends on the app to draw the maximum benefit from it. It is significant to developing a unique product which is vastly different from any others available in the market. Research is of great significance before the design and development of an app. An impressive UX design is the result of work upon competitive analysis done during research by the designer.
Note that good UX design covers more than how a user feels about a product or service. It understands the app’s significance to the business processes of the client and its usage. It also understands and reflects the context in which a user engages with an app.
User Interface Design
What Is UI Design?
Everyone knows that user interface design is not simply about navigation menus, but more about the engagement of a user with an app. UI design isn’t just about how the product appears; it is also about how the product works. It includes the implementation of navigation and the call to action buttons such that the user is easily able to understand the flow of an app. The application should have the most efficient interface to help the users instinctively figure out all its features, functions, and usage in order to achieve their desired goals.
Why Is UI Design Essential?
A major concern of UI designers is usually how the product appears with the visual elements laid out. A major determinant of a successful app is the instinctive emotion and the engagement it forges with the user. There is still a big debate about what type of UI warrants a positive user experience. Some people think a beautiful interface is imperative, while others argue that simplicity is key to positive reception.
What Makes Good UI Design?
A good UI design is invisible to the user; it can only be truly seen by the designer. It improves the brand reputation and status of the company and helps the user effortlessly figure out how the app works. Some aspects of a good interface design have been detailed below:
1. Clarity: Mobile apps with a good user interface do not require manuals to explain to the user how the app works. A good UI avoids any confusion by making everything clear through language and visuals.
2. Responsiveness: A good UI should not cause delays or make the app function slowly. It should inform the user of all ongoing activities- for instance, when a page is loading, a purchase has been confirmed, or data has been received and checked at the other end.
3. Familiarity: Most users like to see familiar features for navigation or call to action buttons. When using an app for the first time, the user should able to identify basic buttons through their understanding of common icons and symbols, such as a cross or a red exit sign.
4. Consistency: A consistent interface design across an application enables users to trace usage patterns. If a user quickly understands how certain parts of the interface work, then they should easily be able to identify similar patterns to navigate to other features.
5. Attractiveness: From a functional perspective, it is not of utmost importance for an app to be elegant. However, if the app is designed with a seamless aesthetic in mind, it makes using the app a much more enjoyable experience. In the competitive market today, an attractive UI has become something of an unspoken necessity.
Tools involved in UI/UX design include Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe XD, and Sketch.
Despite their differences, UI and UX design are integral to the good quality and service provided by an app. They should work together to achieve the desired result. In the current market scenario, designers and developers carry out in-depth research to identify all sorts of issues and make the product attractive for the users. Every mobile development company focuses on high UI and UX design today irrespective of a product being a website or an app.
This is indeed a bright time for UI/UX designers to realize their dreams and breathe life onto their imaginations!