5 Mobile App Design Tips for Better Usability

5 Mobile App Design Tips for Better Usability

June 5, 2019.

User experience is every bit as important as the function of a mobile app. What good is an innovative app if users don’t enjoy using it, or is hardly usable at all? The more usable a mobile app is, the higher the user engagement and the lesser the chances of uninstalls.

When developing and conceptualizing a new mobile app, there are certain design considerations in order to ensure a seamless user experience. Here are five mobile app design tips to help you design a user-friendly app:

1. Design for multiple screen sizes

One of the first and most fundamental aspects of a mobile app is making sure it looks great no matter the screen resolution of the device it’s viewed on. Apps should be compatible with a large range of screen sizes; otherwise, user experience will dramatically plummet.

Consider designing for the smallest screen sizes, and then work your way up to designing for larger screens. When doing so, always ensure that your UI elements are consistent all throughout. A fluid, stacked design can help achieve this.

2. Keep in mind the rule of thumb

When designing for mobile, planning the hand and thumb placement play a huge role in defining your app usability. A study revealed that 75% of interactions on mobile apps are thumb-driven and that certain areas on a screen are considered easy-to-reach, hard-to-reach, or in-between.

The majority of mobile users rely on one hand when using their phones, so the trick here is to consider the natural flow of the thumb zone. Place major call-to-action buttons and frequently used controls in easy-to-reach areas (i.e., around the center). Negative elements, such as the “cancel” or “exit” buttons, should be placed in hard-to-reach areas (i.e., the upper left or upper right corner) so that users don’t accidentally tap on them.

3. Consider battery consumption

How much power an app consumes is often overlooked by many designers, as the common notion is that this is a primary concern for developers. However, a study reported that certain design elements can easily drain a device’s battery: screen brightness and screen color.

It has been seen that primarily white backgrounds can brighten a device’s screen, which subsequently affects battery consumption. With that said, consider offering a “dark mode” option for your mobile app to help conserve the device’s battery.

4. Keep bandwidth consumption to a minimum

In a similar vein to the previous point, a mobile app that requires high bandwidth consumption doesn’t only drain the battery, it also slows down app load speeds and may eat up a lot of mobile data.

Depending on the nature of your mobile app, keep background services, such as high-accuracy location detection, to a minimum. It’s also a good idea to limit information to be downloaded; optimize images, graphics assets, and video content, and allow users to have the option to download heavy multimedia files at their own choosing.

5. Navigation should be simple and intuitive

In today’s modern world, less is actually more. Keeping your mobile app design simple and intuitive are important factors for better usability. Don’t be afraid to use lots of “white” or negative, blank space; this allows breathing room for users and makes for a cleaner and more readable UI.

Aside from menus and bars, use a variety of visual cues and signifiers to guide users on how to navigate your app. Use common icons that make sense to its respective function; for example, a gear for settings, a chat bubble for messages, or a plus sign for uploading content. Subtle design elements such as a raised button can prompt users to press it.

Need help with your mobile app design?

Designing a mobile app requires high attention to detail and professional experience to determine what design works well for which function of an app. If you need help with your mobile app design, you can tap into Lykwyz’s expertise in design and development.

We offer high-quality yet affordable mobile app design and development services to fit your unique needs. If you would like more information, send us an email: hello@lykwyz.com.

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Categories: Mobile Apps