A User Interface Design is a design of an interface or system which is directly accessible by the user and which they interact with to accomplish a task. As a result, it determines how the user will interact with the product.
It aims to enhance the appearance of the product, the quality of the technology used, and its usability. The user can see the software or hardware of the system and can also control or use it through various ways or commands.
Focuses on the appearance of the app or software. Users interact with the user interface by adjusting attributes such as theme, animation, colour, etc.
Our first post of a three-part series will teach you the most essential UI rules you need to remember as a designer. When you fail to follow a single rule, the web experience can be ruined for the user. The usability of your website defines its success, so let’s explore 5 UI rules that can improve its usability:
Explore the essential principles of user interface design
1. Maintain Consistency and Structure
User interface design must take into account the interactions between a screen and human cognition when designing the interface. Making things easier for your users by not forcing them to learn new tools or representations for every new task is a good idea. When things are consistent, customers can make sense of previously unknown things and feel more familiar with them. In addition to keeping your website or app consistent, you can also introduce your own language within it. Furthermore, structuring your content makes it easier for your users to understand, without feeling overwhelmed.
Consistency is important to your users since they need the assurance that once they learn to do something a certain way, they can do it again. A consistent design, layout, and language are just a few of the interface elements that need to be consistent. End-users are more efficient when they have a clear understanding of how things work with a consistent interface. It is the consistency and structure that make the users feel comfortable.
Consider Duolingo, an app that helps people learn new languages. It not only fulfills its promise of making learning languages fun, but also demonstrates how important styling consistency is for UIs. Every element of the app, such as the navigation, typefaces, buttons, and illustrations, is designed to appear visually consistent with one another. Shapes, lighting, and colors remain consistent across the app and website to create a seamless experience. In addition to making the app more user-friendly, it looks professional and is branded. Combined with the adorable Duo, this makes the app aesthetically pleasing and fun to use, evoking a positive and strong response.
Consistency Can Be Achieved By Doing The Following:
- The most important things should be bold and large as part of an impactful visual hierarchy
- Consistent color themes should be used throughout the app or website.
- Establish a visual order, such as aligning everything along a grid
- Across all screens, navigation should be consistent.
- Particularly when working with form elements, it’s important to use the same fonts and types.
- It is important to repurpose the same elements for different situations. As an example, the same sample notification could be color coded to suit a variety of situations.
- Make sure all of your images, galleries, selections, inputs, and buttons have consistent borders.
- All hero images should be related to each other to maintain consistency across pages, so background images should not change frequently.
- In common UI elements, such as radio buttons, scrollbars, and icons, users know and understand their representations and have consistent graphic elements. A radio button is used when there is only one option available, while a checkbox is used when there are multiple options available.
- Well-established conventions should be considered when selecting a layout. In terms of visual location on the screen, humans are very good at remembering where things are located. The exit icon should be placed on the top right, the search field on the top right, and the logo on the top left to capitalize on this characteristic.
- Make sure your website incorporates all the features and functionalities that users expect. Ticket booking should be available on websites for airlines, for instance, while music sharing sites should have embedded media players.
2. Identify how people use your interface
The first step in designing your interface is to determine how people will use it. Due to the rise of touch-based devices, this factor is becoming increasingly important. Taking a look at Tinder, the app’s user experience is characterized by impulsivity and ease of use.
Similarly, apps and websites are used in two ways: indirectly by collaborating with third parties, or directly by using product elements.
Direct Interaction Examples
- With a fingertip, drag and drop an item
- Card swipes
- Clicking a button
Indirect Interactions Examples
- Keyboard shortcuts/commands
- Using a mouse to point and click
- Using a Wacom tablet to draw
- A form field is filled out by typing
Understanding your end-users and the devices they use to access your website should influence your decisions. Swiping shouldn’t play a major role in your interface design if you are designing for people who have limited manual dexterity or seniors. Your app or site should incorporate all the keyboard shortcuts to help coders and writers reduce time working with the mouse when designing for people who primarily use keyboards to interact with websites.
3. Clarify and ensure usability
The interface is the link between the device or product and the end user. Designers often overlook this fact. Users should be able to understand, recognize, and use effective UI designs. An effective and well-loved design can be achieved by working with the principle of clarity. User interaction with your design should never be confusing; they should understand intuitively what might happen when they interact with an element or press a button.
By designing with clarity in mind, you give your users confidence that they are in control of the device or product. A designer’s worst nightmare is discovering that people cannot understand their device or product’s user interface during the testing phase.
In designing a user interface, usability and clarity must be at the forefront of the designer’s mind. A user interface must help users interact with products and devices, and elements that enhance usability should be included in your design. Keep the UI design simple, without extraneous elements, buttons, or colors. A good UI design should make the user feel as if he is directly manipulating the product and has control over it. The best UI designs incorporate elements that ensure usability and clarity, make interactions as natural as possible, ensure hassle-free experiences, and deliver value.
. Industriously designed, this UI helps users accomplish their task as efficiently and quickly as possible.
A newcomer might find the site confusing until some bread crumbs are thrown out to guide them. It’s hard to appreciate even the most aesthetically pleasing of sites when you’re exasperatingly trying to figure it out, which is why functional navigation is such an important part of great UI design. Carmatecqatar, offers the following cardinal rules:
- A user must always be aware of where they are on a website. Orientation is crucial for your users to feel comfortable on your site and streamline the web app on their end. Using headings, breadcrumbs trails, and highlighted menus can help your users find their way around your website.
- Consistency should be maintained in the navigation system. It is similar to streets signs switching between sidewalks, building sides, and posts when your menu bar moves around.
If you want your navigation to be consistent and context-driven, it needs to be placed in accordance with the content flow.
Before you tackle the navigation part of your site, you should finish the content. It doesn’t matter how beautiful your navigation is, if your content isn’t good, you won’t be able to salvage your website. Navigation must support the following content:
- Users find content on sites through menus, which are the default choice.
- Users don’t always land on the homepage directly, so breadcrumbs are vital for orienting them. As a reference point, breadcrumbs serve as a helpful tool.
- The purpose of links is to facilitate the understanding of complex connections between related content.
- Content-intensive websites can be managed with filters.
A simple horizontal menu provides primary navigation, while a lower priority, secondary menu appears to the right of the API. There is a lot of white space devoted to content. Light colors and small fonts are used for the primary navigation, allowing the content to speak for itself.
When users need to navigate between different sections of a website, but there is not enough space for designers to display all this information, vertical menus are the perfect solution. The key sections of the UI can be represented as a list using vertical menus, such as the one shown above for Spotify, and the user can scroll through it to find what they are looking for. By doing so, we can create more “universal” navigation in the footer and header of the website.
5. Visual hierarchy that is strong
Great web user interface designs are characterized by visual hierarchy, which organizes elements on a screen so that users can find the most important information before focusing on the less important. Information such as the company name, logo, and navigation menu should be displayed in a prominent position and rendered in design elements that stand out to make the information immediately visible.
Consider all these rules and UI design principles when creating your next user interface design project, and you’ll end up with a product that is not only beautiful but also user-friendly.
Throughout the process, make sure to test your designs with CarmatecQatar to iterate and launch confidently. In order to make your product as user-friendly as possible, get user feedback before launching it. Looking for a top-notch website development company in Qatar? We’ve got you covered. We deliver custom solutions for your business at the best prices.