Mobile revolution has changed the dimensions of the digital ecosystem bringing the smartphones, tablets and wearables to the forefront. As the hardware and software capabilities of the handheld devices have seen an unexpected surge, mobile apps have become advanced like never before.
Leveraging on these advancements, these apps are able to perform tasks that were unimaginable a few years back. However, familiarity breeds contempt. In the ongoing rat race, the app marketplace has become overly crowded and there is a bunch of mobile apps that have been developed and published in a haste, overlooking the importance of a great design and unique functionalities.
If reports are to be believed, mobile apps are soon going to overtake the desktop app user base. The time spent by an average user on any of the mobile app is almost 80% of the total time spent on the mobile device.
However, there are other stats that project yet another aspect of the situation. According to TechCrunch, nearly 16% of the users do not use an app twice if they do not find it attractive enough. Localytics reports that one out of four apps is abandoned after a single use. It is quite evident that users need an app that looks great and performs without any glitches. If you are able to build such mobile apps, you are through.
So what exactly is the secret to designing an app that ensures guaranteed success.
Undivided focus on the UX
User Experience is an umbrella term that subsumes different aspects of the app design. A great experience can be provided to the users by offering them the precise solutions with the least efforts from their side. Thinking of ways to enable an app take orders when offline or building an all new perspective for a mobile game are all parts of the attempts that developers do to enhance the user experience that can be derived from an app.
Another feature of a breathtaking UX is the simplicity with which it enables the users to use the app. Our lives are already filled with details and nobody wants an app that has a lot of detailing involved in its operation. One example of creating a great user experience can be picking up the geo-location of the app user than asking him/her to feed it manually. There are many such innovative ways that need to be focused on.
Apps tend to get boring as the days pass primarily due to the monotony that their designs induce. Moreover, there are rival apps that continue to up the ante with ravishing new features. Hence, in order to stay relevant and fresh in the minds of the users, updates must be rolled out frequently. The issues that must be addressed with each update are the removal of bugs reported by the users, changes in the design layout if necessary to stay in sync with the target OS update and the addition of new features to woo your users.
The updates must be rolled out as per the feedback received from the users. If there is a common consensus for adding a new feature or doing away with some existing ones, it must be respected and addressed. The code should be written in a manner that can be modified without any hassle.
Extensive app testing
One thing that users hate the most in a mobile app is frequent crashing. Apps crashes due to several reasons and the only way to eliminate these reasons is the extensive testing of an app. Testing should commence from the development stage itself and continue till the app is designed and developed.
Apart from the testing performed on the a few target devices, a beta version of the app should be made available to the selected users and their feedback should be analyzed to find the bugs and rectify all of them before the final version of the app is launched. In order to meet the deadlines, Quality Assurance often gets the least importance and the apps are delivered to the clients without testing them to perfection. Doing away with this approach will help you build better apps.
Design Should Be Simple & Consistent
Consistency across all sections of the app is crucial for the design to leave an impact on the users and create magic with the app. The color hues, text fonts, choice of images used in the app should have a harmony so that the users are delighted with an incredible experience. You cannot have a splash of colors in a layout of a screen that appears after a screen with a serene look and feel achieved with earthly colors. Same holds true for the typography that out to be uniform throughout.
Most of the successful apps like Instagram, WhatsApp, Evernote and many others follow this paradigm. Instagram photos, for instance, have a nostalgic feel to them achieved with the use of filters. You can even imagine an Instagram picture by closing your eyes. If you are able to create the same level of consistency and immersive experience, your app has the potential to top the charts.
Good Customer Support
However hard you try, customers are bound to face certain issues while using the app. Since you have developed the app, you can only resolve any queries that a customer raises. To be able to do, there should be an effective customer support that not only resolves the issues but also interacts with the users on a personal basis. Treating your customers well is the key to the app’s success.
A business launches its app to get closer to the target users by interacting with them in a way they like the most. If the app is not able to satiate the desire of a user by offering an unmatched experience, there is no use of having one. Over the years, we have seen some mobile apps reaching the zenith of success and some being discarded outright. The app design secrets discussed above will definitely let you review your design process and take the best call.