Posted by Indusa Admin on May 17, 2016 11:43 am
In today’s highly mobile world, using a mobile-first design approach is critical for businesses. Each time a user downloads a new app, the expectations are to make life simpler, solve problems efficiently and make your day a bit easier. In order to reach a large audience and to ensure substantial growth of your business, offering a delightful user experience across a wide range of devices is critical. Taking the effort to first sketch out your mobile strategy will go a long way in ensuring satisfied customers.
- Focus on the Content: While designing for a mobile experience, minimalism scores high. As most people use their mobile device on the go, in a hassled and hurried state, it is important to keep clutter to a minimum. Mobile screen space is limited, so it is important to have minimalcontent that focuses on the key message you want the user to take away. Make sure there is just one central focus on each screen including the homepage.
- Offer the Right Features: Deciding on the user experience starts right at the planning stage. While you might want to incorporate a plethora of features to appeal to a large audience, it is important to offer only those features that emphasizes on the core value proposition of your app. Once users are hooked onto the app, you can then understand their preferences and behavior, and have additional features built later on.
- Choose a Flexible Layout: Many mobile devices mean many different dimensions. No matter how tempting it is, don’t just stick to one resolution. As mobile phones encompass a variety of form factors, keeping your mobile app layout flexible and fluid ensures appropriate display across screen sizes. You don’t want your app to work beautifully on some devices and look weird on others, do you?
- Ensure Easy Navigation: While traditional desktop websites display a prominent menu bar at the top or side of the page, offering the same on a mobile device eats up precious screen space. On a mobile device, you want to ensure easy accessibility. If users have to tap through 4 levels of menus to find what they’re looking for, chances are high that they’ll quit after the second tap. Aim to reduce the learning curve for users by avoiding multi-level menus and instead, incorporate easy, intuitive navigation that provides quick access to required information.
- Offer Seamless Touch Input: As the primary mode of interaction on mobile devices is usually touch, you have to account for fingers of various shapes and sizes along with varying kinds of touch pressure. Ensure forms, buttons, and navigation are large enough to prevent overlap with adjacent elements or misinterpretation of the touch input. Also don’t just rely on touch inputs as there are many mobile devices that use styluses and directional key pads. Although such scenarios are rare, you need to consider them and take adequate measures to handle them.
- Provide Minimal Forms: Small touch screens and smaller virtual keyboards do not make for a comfortable typing experience. Ensure forms are simple and short, with the least number of fields required to get the data you need. As much as possible, include auto-fill for commonly used fields like virtual calendars and country names. For forms that are longer than a single screen, exhibit a progress bar demonstrating how far the user has come, and more importantly, how close he/she is to finishing.
- Incorporate Basic Images: Since size and speed are the two most important performance measures for a mobile app, make sure not to use images with elaborate effects; the fewer special-effects that are incorporated, the better. If you want to make your mobile app appealing, high quality content, with attractive font(s), works best. Avoid intricate images to ensure your app’s footprint and page load times are
- Understand the Platform: Each platform, iOS, Android, or Windows, offers various features like GPS, accelerometers, and other sensors that are not present on desktop PCs. Depending on the nature of your application and its purpose, make best use of features offered by the platform to augment the mobile experience. You can enable easier sharing across social media platforms by having a Facebook or Twitter button or offer location specific information and services using the inbuilt GPS.
Adopt a User-Centric Approach
User experience is increasingly becoming a crucial feature in the digital landscape. It is about making the experience valuable, easy to use, and effective for your target market. It is a measure of how the user feels and thinks about your product or service, which is important to attain brand loyalty. As mobile apps dominate as a digital delivery channel, creating a seamless and delightful user experience is key to the success of any mobile app development project. A well-thought-through mobile solution needs to adapt to the overall digital strategy; one that offers a seamless and unmatched user experience. By adopting a user-centric approach to mobile application development, you can drive required emphasis to the needs of your target users that is critical to ensure happy and satisfied customers.
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About the Author – Seema Nair
Seema is a Mobility Project Manager at Indusa and has around 8 years of experience in enterprise and consumer facing mobility solutions. Being a Subject Matter Expert in enterprise mobility, she assist clients in defining mobility strategies and implementing the right mobility solutions for their business.