Since mobile apps have penetrated almost every nook and corner of everyday life and app marketplaces, have emerged as the most competitive business areas targeted by businesses of all niches, developing a successful mobile app is no longer easy. App development has become more complex than ever before because of the increasing competition.
At the same time, the tried and tested development principles that proved to be effective for successful apps are evolving fast and making way for new value additions and improvements. Considering all these aspects, here we are going to explain some of the most time-honoured principles that app developers should follow.
Focus on Creating User-Focused Design
We all know that an app is basically a solution to a problem for the users, and hence the usability should be the central consideration for an app project. The relevance for the users and user engagement should be given top priorities in building the app. It is extremely important to address the user preferences and their expectations from the app.
The design prototype should be validated by the specific target user preferences and key user metrics. Besides maintaining the general principle of simple design with low cognitive load, the app design should address the typical user behaviour and give prominence to actionable elements that users are likely to interact most.
Scalable and Versatile Technology Stack
Choosing the right technology stack is one of the most crucial considerations for any app development project now. Though several credible frameworks have already been popular for their dynamic features, ease of development and rich UI elements while choosing the right technologies for your app project involves several key considerations.
First of all, if you want to build a cross-platform app with scalable native user experience, it is better to opt for component-based frameworks that allow reusing maximum code across all platforms. Both React Native and Flutter are great options for front-end development. VueJS is also increasingly becoming popular as a low-footprint option for building sophisticated native front-end across multiple platforms. As for backend development, NodeJS and NodeJS frameworks like ExpressJS appear to be the ideal options.
Ensure Easier App Navigation
For a sophisticated and user-focused app design that can instantly engage its audience, the most important thing is designing easy navigation. Simple and easy user experience is all about finding the required contents, buttons and options with little or no effort, and this is where easier navigation plays the most important role. Using the right navigation structure is most crucial for engaging user experience.
Don't Miss the Thumb-rule
Another important thing in respect of user experience design is allowing effortless user interactions by placing most of the key actionable elements, buttons and links within reach of the thumb. Since most users these days hold their smartphones single-handedly and scroll the app and interact with other app buttons with their thumb, it is important to create the user interface that helps thumb scrolling and thumb interactions.
Optimising User Controls
These days app users are choosier about their individual preferences than ever before, and they always insist on choosing the right options for having a user experience tailored to their needs and preferences. From allowing the users to choose options for notifications to choosing dark backgrounds to use custom fonts, users should always be given options to tweak the UI/UX elements as per their needs. This is likely to give users a sense of enhanced control which is expected to boost user engagement.
To offer users enhanced control with personalised options, it is important to design a fully flourished user preference centre where users can easily choose toggle buttons and slider options to control various user interface elements directly impacting their user experience. Always provide users "undo" and "redo" options for correcting their inputs and mistakes.
Maintaining design consistency and offering a consistent user experience throughout an app across all platforms is a very important aspect of a cross-platform app. Consistency in the UX design not only establishes certain functional rules that actively reduce confusion, but it is also helpful with respect to highlighting the business brand.
Consistency in the context of mobile app projects not just refers to the consistency of design elements but also the consistency of features and functionalities and consistency of app communication. While for maintaining the visual consistency in the appearance the app design should introduce design layout and other elements that perfectly fit into different device screens, to ensure functional consistency the app project must utilise the local operating system libraries and APIs helpful for shaping the key features on multiple platforms.
Iterative and MVP Development Approach
These days most successful app projects incorporate iteration throughout the development to take on the scope of continuous development and value additions. Both agile development and DevOps approaches are founded on the principle of accommodating iterations and feedback to improve the app output.
MVP or Minimum Viable Product is another highly successful development approach embraced by the small budget and startup app projects. You can build a basic app with the key user experience elements and features and quickly launch the app while remaining open to further value additions based on subsequent user feedback. This approach has been very successful in building highly relevant and low-footprint apps in quick time while coming with relevant value additions with every subsequent update.
All the principles mentioned above have already been popular as the grounding aspects for successful app projects. Yes, we might have missed a few aspects like the need of designing an audience-focused mobile app landing page, keeping the registration process simple, intelligent interactive features like chatbots and a few others.