15 Handy Mobile App Designing Guidelines

By | January 3, 2014
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Among the many mobile apps that fail every year, most share a common feature – a complicated, cluttered design theme. If you are a mobile app developer, you need to follow these design tips, to bolster the probability of success of your applications.

No matter how many sophisticated features a new mobile app packs in – if its user interface (UI) appears cluttered and confusing, it is likely to prove to be a disappointment. There are multiple smartphone apps available at present for practically every purpose, and if your mobile application development designs are not efficient and appealing enough, people won’t think twice about ditching your app and choosing the ones created by your competitors. To make sure that such a scenario does not crop up, you should keep in mind these app-designing pointers:

 

  1. Avoid overloading your app – First things first – users should never face any problems while using the Android, Blackberry or iphone apps you develop. A mobile application should ideally be designed to serve a single, precise requirement of the targeted users (which might be simple story-reading for kids, or complex personal finance calculations for executives). In case you wish a new app to have multiple functions, consider launching different versions/components of it.

  2. Keep the texts scannable – No one likes to squint at their mobile screens, to decipher what is written on the dashboard of smartphone apps. Choose a default font for your application, which would be easily readable on mobile screens and tablets. People should be able to adjust the font size/style according to their convenience.

  3. Pay attention to design precision – Professionals from any top iphone application development company in India would agree that – since individuals typically use their fingers/thumb to tap on app buttons and links (instead of using joysticks) – these ‘call-to-action’ components need to be large enough. Remember, even the largest mobile screen is way smaller than a laptop – and if the app buttons are small, even repeated thumb clicks might not yield the desired results.

  4. Plan for custom mobile applications – Even for apps that are supposed to run on more than one mobile application development platform, you need to make the necessary customizations in it. In general, the technical features and tools used for creating Android or Blackberry apps are different for those required to make iphone applications. Avoid simply taking the same version of an app to different platforms.

  5. Make the app take full advantage of the available smartphone features – A high-end smartphone typically has a lot of features (like GPS, front camera, etc.), which are not available on a standard desktop/laptop computer. Your mobile app designing plans should be such that, the applications can be easily integrated with all the features available on the host phone. Otherwise, people will not be able to experience all its benefits.

  6. Think linear – According to expert designers from the domain of Android and iphone app development in India, applications that have side-scrolling features are generally looked upon unfavorably by users. Instead, you should have a streamlined, linear structure of data/images and other stuff in your app. Do not include any concealed menus. A linear layout would also help you to prioritize the app menu items.

  7. Use grid patterns in the app – Navigation across the different portions/pages of a mobile application becomes a lot easier – when you incorporate a consistent grid pattern in its overall designs. Choose the type of grid that would be in sync with the type of app that you are developing.

  8. Provide a grand first-time experience – The Apple app store alone has over a million smartphone applications, and the competition among every mobile application development company is intense. In such a scenario, your app should have some standout features in its design, which would get people hooked on from the very start. Do not, however, include any innovations that might confuse people.

  9. Make the app upgrades count - Do not release upgrades of your existing apps without including any additional features/functionality in them. As users grow increasingly familiar with an app, they typically start looking for more services and features from it. Gather feedback from as many buyers as possible, and incorporate the suggested improvements in the new version of the app.

  10. Scalability for all devices is a must – Not everyone is going to use your application on a mobile handset. Apart from having separate mobile application development plans for each platform, you also need to make the apps scalable – so that they can be properly viewed/used on tablets, ipads and all other popular handheld devices. Keep track of all the latest phone models that are being launched too.

  11. Include drop-down features – This would economize on the space used up on the user-interface of an app, and would enable you to include more stuff in it as well. Cropped drop-down menus are particularly suitable for mobile applications that have a large number of links/buttons. Make sure that the menu items are easily clickable.

  12. Never neglect app-testing – The app you develop might be the best ever according to you – but, at the end of the day, it is the opinion of the end-users that matters. You need to ensure that there are no bugs or virus files present in the final version of the application, by carefully testing in a beta-group and also via automation. A faulty application can ruin the brand image of your company.

  13. Test on the right devices – This is basically an extension of the previous point. If you are preparing an ipad app, there is hardly any point in testing it on a computer screen only. The testing device/medium for each app has to be the same as the one on which it would be used by the buyers. In case you detect any design glitches while testing, get it rectified before the app release.

  14. Apps should not consume too much of mobile bandwidth – Apart from checking the visual appeal, speed and basic user-friendliness of the app design scheme you have selected, you also need to find out how much of the available bandwidth on smartphones it is taking up. Ditch all such design plans which might look charming enough, but would take up a large percentage of the total mobile bandwidth – consequently slowing down the device.

  15. Do not include long forms – No one likes filling up long, boring pages of forms – least of all, in a mobile application. In case you do wish to gather information about users through an app, put in small, interactive dialog boxes at different pages/portions – instead of simply putting in a long, plain form in it. Make sure that the fields in the dialog boxes are spacious enough.

 

For personal banking and finance-related mobile apps, incorporating the necessary security features in them is of essence. Professional app developers also need to set up an analytics tracking system in every application. A smartly designed mobile application has a much better chance of becoming a hit among users than a complicated one – even if the latter has more features!

Hussain Fakhruddin
Follow me

Hussain Fakhruddin

Hussain Fakhruddin is the founder/CEO of Teknowledge mobile apps company. He heads a large team of app developers, and has overseen the creation of nearly 600 applications. Apart from app development, his interests include reading, traveling and online blogging.
Hussain Fakhruddin
Follow me
 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *