How to Design an App: A Quick Dive In Into UX Design for Startups
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When using an app, the majority of people expect to spend less time and get more jobs done without facing any troubles on their way to achieving a goal. And every day these expectations are getting higher, and so does the competition. That makes the role of well-thought-out UI and UX more significant than ever for your application.
But as you are here, we may suggest, you understand the power of high-quality UI/UX design and your main concern is more practical — to learn how to design an app.
As a design agency with more than six years of experience in providing UI/UX design services our short answer would be: to design a great app you need a great team.
Still, this is a comprehensive guide, in which we will touch upon each aspect you may need to know when designing your own app: from idea to research and prototyping.
Below we will discuss:
- What design thinking is and why you need to know about it
- How to start designing an app from scratch and what stages to go through
- How to find an app designer
- What a redesign process looks like
- How much it costs to design an app
- Best practices to use in mobile app design
Design thinking and app development
No matter if you are a designer, a product manager, a product owner, or someone else, in case you’re going to create something new and innovative you should know about design thinking.
Design thinking is a methodology that is aimed at helping you solve problems creatively. Unlike the other problem-solving techniques and approaches, design thinking is focused specifically on the human side of creative problem-solving. That is, this approach helps you to come up with innovative solutions based on your users’ wants and needs.
Design thinking methodology includes five basic steps undergoing which you will improve your product’s UI/UX:
- Empathize. Understand the people you are trying to design an app for.
- Define. Break down the information you gathered in step one and turn it into useful insights (define the users’ needs, problems, challenges).
- Ideate. Try to come up with solutions/ideas that match with the insights you found in the empathize and define stages.
- Prototype. Analyze all the ideas from the previous step, select a few that you think might be worth implementing, and turn them into simple, testable prototypes.
- Test. Take your prototypes and show them to real users to get their feedback. Then take the insights from this step and get back to the define stage, and then to the ideate stage, and so on.
Each time you get a new idea or update the old one, you get back to the prototype and test phases again and again. That’s how you keep improving your solution.
The five stages of design thinking form the basic map of the methodology, however, the exercises within these circles can be different. The app design process we are going to describe in the next sections is based on the design thinking method, so keep this approach in mind when creating an app.
Designing an app from scratch: 7 steps
We will start from the moment where all you’ve got is a raw idea of the future application in your head, and lead you through the main stages of the product design process to help turn this idea into a concept, and to finally create a prototype.
However, you don’t necessarily need to go through all the following steps in strict order. The design process is not linear. Depending on your specific case, choose where to start, jump from one step to another, make changes, and iterate until you receive the best result.
And now we move to step #1.
- Define the purpose of your application
To design an app, you firstly need to understand what you want to create and why. At this moment it’s enough to take a pen and a paper, get concentrated, and think on the following questions:
- What is the main goal of your app?
- What users’ problems the app is going to solve?
- Why are users supposed to choose exactly your product?
As well, remember that an application is a business tool, that’s why when developing an app, take into account business requirements, user goals, and technology capabilities.
For example, let’s imagine you want to make a banking mobile application, then its purpose can be as follow:
- Business goals: reduce the cost of serving clients in bank branches and increase the average income per client.
- User goals: control the expenses.
- Application tasks: create a remote customer support channel and increase sales of banking products.
Setting goals is a vital stage because you can make a great design, but if the app solves neither the company's nor users’ problems, or the developers will not be able to implement it, design has no sense.
- Conduct research
It happens that product owners put forward hypotheses, without testing them at the research stage, and immediately send them to developers. The result is functionality that no one needs, and a waste of time and money. In order not to create useless apps, study the market, competitors, and potential users.
Most apps you can find on the market are not unique: they are either a combination or improved versions of already existing products. So, don’t be disappointed that you are not one of a kind. A competitive analysis is your chance to find areas for improvement and define your unique value proposition.
When revisiting (and comparing) your rivals, pay attention to the following things:
- What features does the app perform? Write out which features are common for all competitors, which are unique, and which features the app lacks.
- What pricing model does it use? Analyzing the way your rivals monetize their businesses will help you decide which pricing model is the best to use.
- When was it last updated? This information will show you if some specific app will be your active competitor or not.
- How many downloads does it have? The number of downloads will show you the app’s level of popularity. You will also understand whether the problem the app solves is relevant for users.
- What are the apps’ reviews and ratings? Analyzing apps’ ratings and reading users’ reviews help you understand what people like, and what they want to improve or add.
To make a great app you need to understand who and in what context will use your product. That’s why to make sure your app idea is viable and people need it, we should define and learn our target audience.
User interview is usually a one-to-one session where you ask the user questions and record their answers to learn how your users feel about a particular experience.
Through user interviews, you’ll gain an understanding of how your target audience talks about the app you are designing, what problems and pains they mention, what they want from the experience, what they currently enjoy or want to improve.
To conduct user interviews:
- Set your goals and objectives
- Recruit the participants
- Choose the location and set up
- Ask the right questions
User persona is a fictional but realistic portrayal of a target user of your app. Each persona represents an entire group of users. User personas embody everything you learn at the research phase: user goals, needs, challenges, fears, behavior patterns, and so on.
Creating user personas help to design a product, taking into account the needs of different individuals. For example, we used this research method when working on Handprinter, a unique startup with a goal of healing the Earth, to create an intuitive user flow.
- Write out the core feature set for an MVP
MVP stands for a minimum viable product, which is the version of a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers and provide feedback for future product development. An MVP helps you to get early data that confirms users' interest in your application. In other words, testing and improving an MVP helps you to make sure that you are investing in a project that is likely to succeed.
To come up with the right set of features for your minimum viable product:
- Write down all the features you’d like your app to perform. Don’t try to visualize the exact screens the app is going to have, just think about what you want your users to do with the help of the product.
- Take a look at this list and decide which of these features are compulsory to serve the app’s main purpose. Leave only those functions without which your application won’t be able to help users solve their primary problem.
Later, at the test phase, by analyzing the user feedback, you will be able to gradually add more features to an MVP until you find a perfect product-market-fit.
For example, one of our clients, Cylynyx, created a demo product to check which functionality their users would like to see in their product. After testing the demo, Cylynyx came to Eleken for a full-fledged MVP design with more diverse features.
- Think out the structure of the app
Now it’s time to think about how to design an app so that users can easily interact with it. That is, you have to think out an intuitive app structure.
Once you've decided what features the application will have, create a user flow - a flowchart that represents a path the user takes to get their jobs done with the help of your application.
User flows are very useful because they provide a logical idea of how an application should work and solve users’ problems.
As an example, here is the user flow diagram created for Handprinter that we already mentioned earlier.
Once the user flow is ready, you can map the user experience with wireframes.
Wireframes show how all screens will be connected and what elements they will display, from buttons and pop-ups to visuals and text. However, without presenting real content, photos, videos, colors, and fonts. Wireframes will give you a clear understanding of what screens you need to have designed, and how the app is supposed to work.
For instance, when we at Eleken designed wireframes for a freight tendering platform our main focus was on usability. As you can see below, we made them black and white to demonstrate the logic of the product so that nothing distracts our clients from the flow.
You can create wireframes in
- User testing
Once you’ve got the wireframes, test them on your colleagues, friends, your team, or perfectly conduct user testing.
Pay attention if your testers understand the purpose of each design element, find the structure clear and intuitive, and can easily navigate through the app. In case you find some inconsistency in the structure, keep refining, rearranging, and testing it until you receive great user feedback.
- Think out the visual part.
A good app should combine a consistent user experience with an appealing and intuitive user interface. That’s why after we manage to design a logical app architecture, we need to create mockups that show in detail what your finished product will look like.
First of all, search the internet for references that appeal to you and form them into a moodboard.
To create mockups, you can use the tools mentioned in the prototyping section (as a team of product designers, we choose Figma). Still, as UI and UX design have a huge impact on further app success, we recommend you opt for professional help at this point. And here you have different options.
- Variant “A”. You are a UI/UX designer and can design an app yourself /you already have a design team
In such a case, you can omit this section, and jump straight to stage 6 (prototyping and testing).
- Variant “B”. Cooperate with the designer 1-on-1
In case you've defined your goals, have a clear app vision, and understand what you want to achieve with the design, then hiring a UI/UX designer will work great for you.
There are different ways to hire UI/UX designers:
- Ask your friends, colleagues, and acquaintances for a reference (a word of mouth can have great power), or check the Clutch for designers with good reviews.
- Create a job offer at Upwork, LinkedIn, Toptal or look at designers’ portfolios at Behance, Dribbble.
- Once you receive CVs, pay attention to portfolios (do you like the designer’s style?) and experience (if you need to find a designer for your SaaS app, see if your applicant has had similar cases)
- During the interview ask a designer to explain one of their case studies in detail (what the problem was, how they identified the challenges, what their design process looked like, how they arrived at the suitable solution)
- Pay attention if you understand each other well during the conversation.
But apart from Variants A and B, there's another one, which is no less effective.
- Variant “C”. Cooperate with a design agency
In case you feel that your app is too complex, or you are not sure that you can cope with all the workload (research, wireframing, prototyping) alone, consider hiring a design agency. They can help you to design an app from scratch, redesign a piece of it, or help with any other aspect you have trouble with.
How to choose a web design agency?
The process of choosing a web design agency is, in fact, the same as hiring one designer: check the portfolio, ask about their design process, make sure you feel comfortable when communicating with each other.
What specialists do I expect to receive when hiring an agency?
As there are different types of agencies, depending on your needs you may receive a team with a different line-up. Though, the most common team composition is the following:
- UX designer. Takes care of a consistent user experience (wireframes, prototypes)
- UI designer. Develops visual concept of a product (mockups, UI kits, typography, color scheme)
- UX researcher. Conducts UX research and turns the data they get into valuable insights for a design team (user interviews, user personas, user testing, A/B testing, and so on)
- Project manager. A project manager is an intermediate between designers and you.
- UX copywriter. Creates content that helps users quickly navigate through the app and easily reach their goals.
To sum up, we want to tell you that no matter what option you choose, don’t forget to communicate with your design partner and give your feedback in time. Even the best professional won’t be able to complete the project without your involvement.
- Prototype and test again
Development is the most expensive part of any product. Therefore, it is important to check possible shortcomings and correct errors before handing an app layout to the development team. To test the application, the designer creates interactive prototypes - a rough version of the product that allows you to understand how the app looks and feels.
To design an app prototype, the designer assembles the mockups into a slideshow using a graphic editor or software (InVision, Sketch, Figma, AdobeXD). Prototypes make it possible to switch between screens by clicking on a specific area of the layout. Usually, these areas are transparent and are located on top of the drawn buttons, so it seems that the button is not drawn and static, but real.
For example, below you can see what the prototype that we created for Textmagic (customer experience platform) looked like.
How to redesign an app
At the beginning of the article, we promised you that this guide is going to contain everything you may need to know about app design. So, one more topic we want to briefly discuss here is app redesign.
In fact, the processes of designing and revamping the app are quite similar. Below we will briefly mention the main stages of product redesign, if you want more details, check our article “How to redesign an app”.
- Define your goals. Is your design outdated? Do you keep receiving negative customers’ reviews about the app interface? Do you want to do a rebranding? Make sure you make a redesign not just for the sake of redesign.
- Conduct the UX audit (competitor analysis, heuristic analysis, collect user feedback, analyze the existing design system)
- Develop visual solutions for all app’s screens (new user flow, wireframes, mockups, dynamic prototypes)
- Create a UI kit for a new design. UI kit is a set of default elements that we use to build a user interface (buttons, arrows, navigation elements, fonts, color scheme, and the like). Reusing components from the UI kit helps to quickly and easily create/extend an app while adhering to common style across all screens.
- Test, analyze, and review the feedback
Finally, to eliminate the risks that come with the redesign and correctly find the direction for refining an application, we recommend finding a reliable design partner.
How much does it cost to design an app?
And again a short answer: “In most cases, app design cost depends on the number of hours a designer needs to perform a scope of work.”
But in real life, you can’t predict the exact price for app design services because each product is unique, and each project is different. So, it takes a different time to come up with, develop, and test a suitable design solution.
As well, the price may depend on
- The designer’s experience (the more experienced the designer is, the higher their hourly rates would be)
- The set of features, and overall project complexity
- Ongoing expenses needed to operate a business
- Your level of preparation (if you, for example, conducted user research on your own, designers will be able to start from building wireframes, otherwise, they will have to spend additional time (and your money) on the research phase)
If you want a more detailed answer, read our article about the app design cost.
App design tips from Eleken
In conclusion, here are seven tips from our designers that you should consider when creating an application.
- Don’t put creativity over usability. Don’t forget that the product should be user-friendly, and the design should take into account users' needs, and not just your desire to be unique.
- Reuse design elements when it is possible. If you use a certain kind of design pattern for some piece of design, try to apply it for other blocks in the interface as well. This way it will be easier for users to navigate the app, and the design will become more consistent.
- Build the correct hierarchy in your interface. With the help of size or colors make sure the user clearly understands which design element is primary, and which one is secondary.
- Simplify the interface whenever you can. Get rid of all design elements that don’t help users get their jobs done faster and more efficiently.
- Don’t put more than three buttons on one screen. One screen should contain one main button and one-two secondary buttons. The rest of the buttons should be hidden.
- Good design does not need onboarding. Interface design is about managing the user's attention, the user should do what they're intended to without long descriptions/courses/tutorials.
- Remember about accessibility. Your app should be convenient for all types of users. Make sure that the fonts and colors you use make the interface readable/understandable/accessible for people with special needs.
Need more help in designing a web or mobile application? We at Eleken help our clients both with building products from scratch and redesigning the already existing apps, so don't hesitate to reach out to us.
How To Make Users Love Your Product: 11 User Engagement Strategies
Have you ever heard about the phenomenon of a shrinking attention span? People are now overwhelmed with information. They use dozens of products and services, flopping over from one to another, honoring some products with daily usage yet not giving others a chance.
If you want to ensure your SaaS growth, be ready to combat for users’ attention. Your marketing strategy should aim to educate and entertain the users to increase the retention rate. Eventually, you want your users to interact with your service every single day, making it an integral part of their lives. In a nutshell, your ultimate goal is to make your product sticky.
“Once people start using your product, SaaS companies need to focus on making that product as sticky as possible. Your customers need to be using it in their day-to-day workflows,” - Paul Schmidt, a senior consultant at SmartBug Media.
By the way, here in Eleken, we know that one secret of product stickiness is a customer-centered design.
In this article, we will talk about actionable and efficient user engagement strategies you can start implementing straight away.
Ready to go? To have a whole picture made up in your head, let’s answer the fundamental question first.
Why is user engagement important?
First and foremost, engaged users are a company’s biggest asset. The satisfied customers are loyal brand advocates. They help the company survive in the competitive market, increase sales and profit, and ensure growth. Eventually, all the SaaS companies work for people. They want the users to make the most out of the product or service, become happy, and stay with the business as long as possible, ensuring recurring revenue.
Effective user engagement strategy helps the business to:
- Grow customer loyalty, which leads to long-lasting relationships between the users and the company
- Increase revenue and, what is even more critical, make the revenue predictable
- Stand out from the competition by providing an excellent customer experience and building a positive image in clients’ minds
User engagement is sometimes referred to as customer engagement. While their definitions are very close, there is a slight difference between these two concepts.
SaaS user engagement vs. SaaS customer engagement
The term “customer engagement” typically implies a high-touch relationship model, whereas “user engagement” is used by companies that employ a low-touch relationship model.
The customer engagement approach focuses more on in-person product training.
User engagement invests more in the in-product user onboarding experience.
Simply put, the high-touch relationship model can be defined as the “one-to-one” approach and usually implies regular assistance from a dedicated customer success manager and is used for high-value customers and complex products.
The low-touch or so-called tech-touch model uses a “one-to-many” customer interaction approach and focuses on digital engagement for free or lower contract value customers.
To sum up:
Customer engagement model
- High-touch relationship model
- Greater contract value per account
- More complex product
- Paid service subscription
User engagement model
- Low-touch relationship model
- Lower contract value per account
- Less complicated product
- Free product usage
The engagement strategies we will discuss in this article can be applied to both user engagement and customer engagement models. Strictly speaking, user engagement can be considered an essential component of customer engagement and forms the firm foundation for the latter.
Now, let’s find out how to engage your users and provide them the best customer experience.
1. Employ personalized approach
For example, Duolingo, a language learning app, guide new users through the personalized onboarding funnel according to different jobs-to-be-done, making the app a perfect match for multiple users. The choices users make at each funnel’s stage influence their in-app journey.
2. Know your users
To refine your customer engagement strategy, you should determine who your users are, what needs they want to satisfy, and how often they interact with your product. The SaaS product is typically used by several types of users.
- The clients who are regularly using your product. They are the most engaged users, loyal and active. You should treat them accordingly, not promoting features they’ve already used or products they’ve already purchased.
- The users who haven’t used your product for a certain amount of time. These users should be handled carefully. You need to focus on what your product can do for them, what value you can offer, and why they should give you a second chance.
You may also have free users and those who pay for the service, and both segments definitely demand different approaches. The more thorough customer analysis you will undertake, the better you can refine your marketing tactics to increase user engagement.
3. Send triggered messages
I believe you’re already emailing your users welcome messages, newsletters, and thank you notes. However, it’s possible to send more relevant emails triggered by an automatically set event. Activated messaging creates a more personalized experience depending on the action the users take on your website or within your app.
The email below I received after I had downloaded an ebook. The message unobtrusively involves me in communication, pursuing a goal to understand my needs better and present the services ProfitWell can offer me.
4. Provide omnichannel experience
The omnichannel value is seamless communication with a user throughout all channels, no matter how and where they reach out. The omnichannel breaks the barriers between product and marketing.
Of course, this is easier said than done, especially in large companies. However, providing customers a truly omnichannel experience will significantly improve user engagement and increase retention rates.
5. Interact by in-app chat
In-app chat is an efficient tool to help your customers resolve any issue they may have using your product. It’s an opportunity for the business to reveal what features users find difficult and decide how to facilitate their user journey and improve customer experience.
6. Grab attention with videos
What educational materials do you provide to your users? Guides, eBooks, and blog posts are the most common educational resources used by SaaS companies. However, the textual content is not always effective. Firstly, it usually takes more effort to consume a written word than visual materials. And it is undoubtedly more time-consuming. Video tutorials can be an excellent option to replace textual content. They are visually appealing and convey a message faster.
Besides, videos are an irreplaceable tool to build an emotional connection with your audience. Skilled storytelling holds users’ attention and makes a strong impression.
7. Gather feedback with in-app surveys
If you can embed customer surveys in your app - do it. CES, CSAT, and NPS surveys are inexhaustible resources of precious insights. The surveys inbuilt into your product allow you to target the right person at the right time and increase the chances to gather proper customer feedback.
In surveys, the segmentation based on user personas can help target the specific audience and not ask the same customers the same questions.
8. Utilize gamification
The gamification concept is not new. However, to fight the low user engagement, the SaaS companies are actively incorporating this technique into their marketing strategy.
What can be an example of the SaaS gamification? Let’s say you can arrange loyalty badges and encourage users to promote your content. The customers can earn free credits and use them to get discounts for their monthly payment, for example, or add-ons purchase.
9. Engage your loyal users
Loyal users are a gift for the company. Nurture them properly, and you will benefit from your business-customer relationships. How? Your brand advocates will be the first to spread the word about your new product with their reviews, quotes, and testimonials. They can also be beta-testers and early adopters, providing valuable feedback regarding the capabilities of the product.
Encourage high customer engagement with special promotions and motivational gifts. Let them be first to know about new features release or company updates. Love your customers, and they will pay you back.
10. Focus on upselling existing users
It’s more cost-effective to upsell existing customers than invest in acquiring new ones. The revenue expansion can help fight customer churn, which is an inevitable process for all SaaS companies.
The expansion revenue is crucial for sustainable SaaS growth. ProfitWell claims that for healthy SaaS business growth, at least 30% of your income should come from expansion.
11. Encourage all-round support
Many SaaS companies are implementing a specific customer support approach involving all employees, from developers to managers, to support customers.
According to Zapier, “effective all-hands support focuses on making life better for your customers. But it can also cause a shift in how you and your team think about and build your company”.
This approach doesn’t actually mean that the customer support team will lose their job. On the contrary, they own the customer support domain, whereas the rest of the employees contribute to the process.
How to build an effective user engagement strategy
- Know your audience and create a personalized approach to each users’ segment
- Track users behavior with the help of analytics to better understand the roadblocks users face while interacting with your product
- Elaborate personalized customer journey by creating user personas and using the jobs-to-be-done approach
- Gather customer feedback with in-app surveys and utilize the insights to refine your user engagement strategy
- Interact with users by in-app chat to provide quick support
- Use video content and gamification to catch users attention and increase motivation
- Encourage loyal users to keep a high level of customer engagement
- Initiate all-round customer support to make user experience truly joyful
- Make all your business user-focused
- Be creative in the search for new ways to engage your customers
Do you need more advice on how to boost your business growth? Learn about six strategies to reduce customer churn.
Web Design Examples of Usable, Responsive and High-Converting Websites
Are you looking for inspiration to create an effective website? We will try to help you with it. Eleken is a design agency. It's our job to create websites that bring value to the customer and drive revenue for the company.
When designing a website there are many points that contribute to its effectiveness. But, first of all, a good web design should offer its customers a consistent user experience no matter what device they use, and promote the client to take valuable actions on your website. That is, the website has to be usable, responsive, and high-converting.
In this article, we will figure out why these three points are so important and take a look at effective web design examples that display usability, responsiveness, and high conversion.
Let's start with some theoretical information about the above three website characteristics.
What does a usable website possess?
A person comes to your website with a certain purpose (read the blog, buy the service, explore more information on the topic, etc.) and they expect to complete their goal with ease. If the website is inconvenient and difficult to use, the visitor will leave it. If the main page does not give answers to the questions "what exactly can I get here?" and “can I have my problem fixed here?” the user will also leave the site.
Visitors won't spend their time studying the interface to understand what they are supposed to do, that's why usability is a crucial feature of web design.
Website usability shows how easy it is for new visitors to perform basic actions, how quickly they can navigate on the site, and how simple and pleasant the overall interaction with your website is for your users.
To be usable a website should have:
- Clear structure and intuitive navigation. When a person enters the site, it should immediately be intuitively clear for them where to click and what will happen after clicking, which page they will go to and what information they will see there. A well-designed website structure won't let the user wander aimlessly from section to subsection, but it will help the visitor to quickly find the needed information.
- Relevant content. Visitors arrive at your website with some questions they want to find answers to. That's why important and useful information should immediately catch the eye of the user. It should be easy to notice, easy to read, and easy to understand.
- Appealing design. The aesthetically pleasant interface also increases usability. Clean and clear design with a lot of white space helps to highlight the important data and helps users to better perceive the information.
- Fast page load. 40 % of users expect the website to load within 2-3seconds otherwise they leave it. So, as a website owner, you should make your page load as fast as possible. This will significantly increase usability.
Creating a user-friendly and intuitive website contributes greatly to its effectiveness and it is crucial to provide the website usability across all devices a person may use to access your website. For this purpose, you should consider creating a responsive design.
What is a responsive website?
A responsive web design allows you to build only one website that is optimized for all sizes of screens and allows you to have a consistent user experience on your laptop, smartphone, or tablet.
The World Advertising Research Center states that about 2 billion people access the internet with their smartphones only. That's a significant reason your website needs to be responsive and still not the only one.
Building a responsive website design saves time and money you'd spent on developing and maintaining a separate UI for each gadget.
As well, a responsive web design makes people stay longer on your site as it provides a better user experience. In its turn, time on site together with page load speed, and bounce rate results in higher Google ranking and more traffic.
Finally, a responsive website allows you not to lose customers that came to your website from their mobile devices. You don't have to redirect them to a device-specific website when they want to start a free trial or subscribe to your service.
To adjust content on your website depending on what device your visitor is using a responsive web design uses:
- Fluid grids. Fluid grids make the columns automatically adjust to the size of the screen.
- Fluid Images and videos. Fluid visuals ensure that photos or videos will never be wider than their containers and never exceed their real size on large screens.
- Media queries. Media queries change web designs based on device characteristics such as width type, height, orientation, and screen resolution. Media queries create a responsive design that applies the appropriate designs to each screen size.
Making your website respond to the customer's behavior no matter what the size of the screen, the platform, and orientation are, help to make your visitors even more satisfied with your service.
What elements should a converting website have?
The main purpose of each website is to turn visitors into customers. Conversion of the website is tightly connected with its usability and responsiveness. To drive leads a website has to be easy to use, intuitive, aesthetically pleasing, have a fast page load, and provide a high-quality user experience across different devices.
We've already discussed what it means for a website to be usable and responsive, but there are two more points without which a website will not convert. They are:
- Clear value proposition. A value proposition explains what benefit your customers will get from their interactions with you. It also helps you differentiate yourself from competitors and hook your target customers at a glance. A clear value proposition ensures the visitors that they make an informed purchase decision.
- Noticeable call-to-action button. As soon as the visitor has learned everything they need and they are interested in the service you provide you should give them some further guidance. A clear call-to-action button motivates and encourages website visitors to take a specific action, for example, buy the product, download the app, subscribe to a newsletter, etc. CTA tells exactly what the visitor should do. It should be easy to notice and possess an accurate yet short copy.
At this point, we've come through the general theoretical information about usable, responsive, and converting websites. Now, let's take a look at the best website designs that combine these three qualities.
Examples of usable, responsive, and high-converting websites
Below you will find five website examples with outstanding web design. We will analyze each of them according to the following characteristics: usability, responsiveness, and ability to convert.
GitHub is an online project management and code hosting platform for developers.
What makes it usable
GitHub knows its reader and has a human-centered design.
- Clean and clear design with lots of white space help to get all the important information fast
- The "Compare plans" page is logically structured: general information is at the top and as you scroll down you can dive into more data. When the visitor scrolls down the page to see more info, the names of plans and their prices remain at the top which once again proves that the website has a user-friendly design.
What makes it responsive
GitHub's website provides a great user experience no matter if you use it on your desktop or on the smartphone.
- To save the place the menu bar on the desktop version is transformed into a hamburger menu on mobile devices
- The website shows a responsive animation and other visuals and they do not influence the page load speed even with a 4G connection
- The two-column layout on the desktop changes to the one-column layout in the mobile version
What makes it convert
GitHub is a great example of a website that converts.
- Clear value proposition. As visitors scroll down the page, they will see many points that present the value of the service. Each point provides enough information to interest the reader and CTAs to guide them on further actions.
- The green "Sign up" button is placed in the center and the visitor sees it as soon as they open the page. When the user scrolls the page down to read more information the green "sign up" CTA remains noticeable all the time to be able to convert the visitor any time.
- As well, in the above screenshot, we can see that a little astronaut looks at the CTA. This design trick helps to concentrate visitor’s attention on the call-to-action button
The website of Github is user-friendly and engaging which makes the visitor stay longer to discover the page.
Shopify is a cloud-based e-commerce platform that allows people to start their business online.
What makes it usable
Shopify is a great example of a high-quality website with a usable and user-friendly design.
- A clean and modern website layout without long blocks of text allows the reader to easily identify the info about app features
- Clear navigation does not confuse the user and lets them understand what will happen after each click. The menu is divided into two groups. To the left, we can see the basic operations that navigate you through the site. To the right, there are some important navigation buttons that direct the visitor to the info that interests most users (pricing, learn, log in) and the "Start free trial" CTA.
- The page loads in less than five seconds
What makes it responsive
Shopify provides its users with consistent UX on desktops, tablets, and smartphones.
- Not to make clutters when using a smartphone, the menu bar is hidden into a hamburger menu icon, which is a nice responsive navigation example. Still, even in the hamburger menu, the navigation is separated into blocks with the help of a line.
- To save space and make the information easy-to-read from mobile devices illustrations are above or beloved the copy and not to the left or right like in a site for desktops.
What makes it converting
Here are features that make Shopify converting:
- Bright CTAs across the whole website stand out well on the pale background. As well, the short form you need to fill out to start a free trial (only email address) prompts the user to complete it.
- Text matches the visuals and together they make a clear value proposition.
Shopify's design is clean, consistent across different devices, and prompts its visitors to convert.
Slack is a cloud messenger for business communication.
What makes it usable
Slack's app is best known as a simple website example that has a user-centered design.
- Easy navigation. Navigation in the header is clear and intuitive.
- Relevant content and appealing visuals make the presented information easy to read and perceive.
- Engaging animation. The screenshot below is the extract from the website which not only shows its visitors how the app looks like and even allows users to click through the left menu bar to fully experience the interaction with an application.
- Fast loading
What makes it responsive
Slack is easy to use both on laptops and mobile devices.
- Slack uses the fluid grids that transform the two-column layout on the desktop into the single-column layout on the smartphone.
- To save space and not to make the page too lengthy they use the carousel to present visuals.
- Slack's homepage shows the visitor how the app looks. When you open it on your desktop, it shows an example for the desktop app version, when you open it with your smartphone you see the mobile version of the application.
What makes it converting
- Big and noticeable call-to-action buttons serve as clear guidance for the user that is interested in the product
- Each block of information shows what value Slack can bring to its customer
Slack's website with its simplicity shows a perfect case of effective web design.
What makes it usable
- A clean and simple design with a lot of white space and appealing illustrations perfectly match each other. Such a design makes the information readable and highlights the main important features of the service
- Easy to use navigation is located in the header and consists of only four main points, when moving the mouse pointer to each of them the visitor will see the drop-down menu that will guide them through the site.
- Fast page load. The site loads in about three seconds with a 4G connection.
What makes it responsive
- The page layout condenses from three columns on desktop to one column on tablets and mobile phones.
- The menu bar is hidden into a hamburger menu icon to declutter the web design.
What makes it converting
- Contrasting and noticeable CTAs leave visitors no doubts about what to do next. They clearly stand out on the white background.
- Each page on the website matches the overall concept and communicates the value proposition
Gamaya is a good example of a simple, easy-to-use, and responsive website.
Discord is a messaging platform for creating communities. It is especially popular among gamers and streamers.
What makes it usable
With its website Discord shows that they know their audience well.
- The website is full of engaging animations and fun illustrations that are especially appealing for gamers and streamers.
- Discord is extremely intuitive and easy to navigate. The menu bar is not bulky and includes only the most important points which leave no place for confusion.
- A lot of white space makes it easy for the visitor to perceive the information
- The page loads very fast both on desktop and mobile devices
What makes it responsive
- A three-column layout on the website changes into a two-column layout for tablets and a single-column layout for mobile devices.
- On desktops, the illustration in the section "Nitro" is animated and much bigger than on the smartphone version. Making this visual not animated and smaller when using a mobile device helps to concentrate visitor's attention on the value proposition and CTAs.
- The full menu bar on the desktop is hidden into the hamburger menu icon on smartphones
What makes it converting
As we've already mentioned Discord knows what its audience likes.
- The header "Your place to talk" and the subheader clearly states what you can get with this application and what value it will bring to you as a customer.
- Discord offers both free and premium versions of the app.
- All the call-to-action buttons on the website stand out well as they contrast with the background
Investing in creating a high-quality web design is a very significant aspect of the promotion of your service. When designing a website don't forget to take care of:
- Intuitive website navigation
- Aesthetically pleasant design
- Relevant content
- Page load time
- Consistent user experience across different devices
- Noticeable CTAs
- Clear value proposition
Taking into account all the above points will help you get an effective website that will bring value to your customer and profit for your business.
If you think creating a usable and responsive website that drives high conversion is a challenging task, drop us a line and we will help you with this.