According to Statista the number of smartphone users in the U.S. for the year 2016 is expected to reach 207.2 million.We all know that mobile app revolution is playing an important role in our life. There is no denying the fact that the mobile frenzy is not going to stop anytime soon.
What we probably are not aware is that just how popular mobile really is. In fact, the number of mobile users has already overtaken the number of traditional, desktop users. The number of Mobile-Only Internet Users Now Exceed Desktop-Only in the U.S according to comScore.
To put it in simple terms, the number of people accessing Internet on desktop/laptop has been outnumbered by people accessing Internet from mobile devices. This has gigantic implications for mobile UX design.
After all, people are shopping products, comparing services or reading the news on their mobile phones while on the go. The failure to design with mobile-first approach will be disastrous for any e-commerce site or publication.
Here are few tips that will help you deliver consistent user experience:
Keep your design minimalist
Remember, mobile screen real estate is premium as you are designing for a much smaller screen compared to a desktop/laptop. Stay clean and simple. Knockout superficial design elements that add little value. Go for practicality and purpose compared to fanciness in your design. With precious real estate screen, it goes without saying that you can’t do a complex design. Thus, minimalism is the safest bet. This approach will help you take user experience to the next level.
Think about it when users are looking at an uncluttered interface in their iPhones or Android devices, they will be able to find what they’re looking for in the site extremely quickly, which improves the user experience. Quintessentially, it means that users should be able to check content they need rather quickly. The primary content should entice users to navigate further.
Boomers, Generation X or Millennial: Know your Audience
It is important to know your target audience. Remember, a 22-year old would interact with your app in entirely different from the way a 50-year old. The way your audience interacts with technology makes it important to design the app and its interactions accordingly. Further, this concept is not just limited to age. It is also about the type of device you use. For instance, if your audience mainly uses Android, porting your iOS app to work on the many different Android devices might not be a good idea.
Simply porting an iOS app might be feasible as Android users expect their app to look and feel like an Android app. Each mobile operating platform has a unique set of convention. If you simply reproduce elements from one platform to another, you risk alienating the user, which results in inconsistent experience.
Don’t bombard users with onboarding
According to statistics, nearly 80-90% of downloaded apps get used once and then deleted. This is an extremely alarming number. App developers, designers and strategists focus lot of their energy and marketing budgets to entice users to download their app. Well, but app download is just half the battle. With millions of apps competing out there, keeping users engaged is the next important step.
That’s when onboarding comes in. Onboarding is a widely discussed UX topic. In simple words, onboarding refers to overlay tutorials to explain users the interface.
Is it the right approach to bombard users with tutorials right from the word go?
Because many users are likely to skip the intro as they are in a hurry to get started with the app. And if your tutorial is stuffed with screens, users are most likely to forget everything the moment they close the overlay.
And last but not least: Is it a good idea to explain interface? Does that mean it’s not that good or intuitive? There is a better way to welcome your users, rather than bombarding with tutorials.
Don’t reinvent the wheel just for the sake of change
Now a days, browsing Internet on mobile rather than desktop is increasing at a phenomenal rate. Many mobile users started with website browsing on desktop before moving on to mobile devices. There are several standard patterns relating to site navigation, just don’t reinvent the wheel for the sake of change. If you are defying set patterns, there has to be a good reason behind the change.
Here are some common features that you should carry over into your mobile navigation:
- Hamburger menu
- High-quality images
- Easy-to-use and prominent search feature
- Clear call-to-action buttons
Era of Personalization
The idea behind personalization is to tailor user experience right from the word go. It is not just about providing content to users, rather delivering content based on users preferences, habits or location. This effectively means that if a user launches app, relevant content will be delivered relating to topics, creating a user experience that is both consistent and seamless.
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