While smartphones were already an important part of people’s life, global outbreak of COVID-19 paved the way for digitization like never before. Whether it is for meeting your friends, or conducting meetings to discuss an issue, or to maintain education continuity, mobile applications have penetrated every aspect of consumer’s life.
Mobile applications, however, were more popular among all the software alternatives available. According to a study, there is a rise of 366% in the popularity of mobile application development worldwide (Source). Hundreds of mobile applications are launched every year across the globe. Unfortunately, not each of them is successful. For most of them, the reason is poor UI/UX. 90% of users have stopped using an app due to poor performance (Source).
Your application doesn’t have to end up among the list. To help out, here we are covering the # things you must consider in order to develop user-centered mobile applications.
Things to Consider While Developing User-centric Mobile Apps
1. Target Market
Understanding your target audience is important in order to create a product that thrives. Conducting this simple activity will give you insights into their vital traits and design the mobile application that closely aligns with their needs.
Multiple factors determine the impact that your application can possibly have. These include: age, demographics, education level, and more. To build a profile of target audience for your mobile app, consider answering the following questions:
- What is the average age of your target users?
- What is their location?
- What is their education level?
- What is their general socioeconomic level?
2. App Usability
Usability is a significant part of mobile app development. It is pivotal to create user experience that your users love. Underestimating the importance of something as small as navigation can adversely impact your mobile experience, and ultimately company’s bottom-line.
Mobile usability is paying mindful attention to how users are expected to navigate through the app and making sure the experience is seamless. This is how you can ensure this aspect of mobile experience is handled well:
- Research and analyze the users to understand how to design for them
- Consider the use cases and understand that a user might be doing multiple things while using the application. Design the app accordingly.
- People tap on phones and click on computers. Make sure you design a layout with content and navigations within easy reach of thumbs.
- Put the most important content at the center of screen where fingers don’t block the view and place the main navigation controls in the most appropriate place around the device.
- Gestures and interactions are important, but don’t overdo
3. Behavioral Gesturization
Behavioral gesturization allows users to interact with your app using small gestures such as pinching, swiping, scrolling, etc. You can understand it with the swipe gesture on the popular dating app Tinder, where users can Swipe left/ right to express their interest.
Behavioral gesturization makes it easier for the users to access the application and therefore, boosts its usability. You need to closely understand how your users are expected to use the application to know what gestures are specific to them. You can have features that facilitate a few features via these gestures.
4. Choose Interactive Mobile Designs
Building interactive interfaces implies mobile experiences that are meaningful based on popular trends like control, personalization, responsiveness, and real-time interaction. Including visual markers such as the following is the easiest way to build interactive interface:
- Progress markers
- Indicators to show application flow
- Markers to demonstrate context of the app
These markers enable user’s engagement at its prime. Make sure you use creative visuals that don’t make the interface unnecessarily complex.
5. Prioritize the Offerings
Some of the features might add value for your users, while some of them might be the part of core functionality. It is important to understand the difference between must-have(s) and could-have(s). Your business requirements should closely align with user requirements. List out all the features you want to include in the application, and check if they add value to the users.
Build a design that matches your business requirements to that of the target audience.
Make sure all the important features are easily accessible to the users, while the ones that fall among the could-have(s) can be among the additional ones for users to visit if they wish to.
6. Continuous Testing and Evolution
QA and testing are an important step of mobile application development and helps to continually test, iterate and refine the product. Make sure that mobile application is tested for flawless execution across all the devices including legacy ones. Additionally, don’t forget to perform alpha beta testing by rolling out the software among a specific set of target audience to ensure you deliver a product that they love. This gives you insights whether your assumptions about elements and design decisions need to be re-considered.
Developing a mobile app that empowers your growth is the combination of multiple factors including market research, the quality of application, features and functionality, and a lot more. It all, however, sums down to one thing- customer experience is crucial. If your mobile application prioritizes user experience, it is naturally going to thrive in the industry.
Pooja Choudhary is an experienced digital marketer at Matellio with love and passion for digital marketing. She enjoys implementing various writing styles and techniques. She is a graduate in Information Technology which gives her a broad spectrum of understanding various tech tools and platforms.
Mobile apps stock photo by ESB Professional/Shutterstock