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What are the 10 UX Tips to Design Better Mobile Apps?

Alekh Verma | February 7, 2023
UX tips

A normal user normally spends an average of 4 hours per day using mobile applications. Most of these mobile users are goal-oriented and have limited time and bandwidth, thus it’s essential that mobile apps must aid in simplifying their lives. Generally, people use mobile to attain short-term but important goals such as bank-related activities, checking for a location or directions, and more. Thus, they expect immediate results and a streamlined interaction, and a good app must always deliver it.  

A business’s app or website has the ability to leave a lasting impression on the user. A user interacts with your business through your mobile app or website even before buying your product or service, and this interaction can sometimes determine their next course of action. Now, this good or bad impression depends on a lot of factors, but more often than not, it all comes down to curating a good user experience (UX).  

Why you must focus on mobile app UX design?  

It is believed that nearly three-quarters of the world will exclusively use their smartphones to access the web by 2025. Thus, it is indisputable that a business must invest time, money, & effort in developing a mobile application with good UX.  

A UX design focuses on what your user is experiencing while using your application. When you’re developing an application with user experience in mind, the goal is to escort your customer (user) from start point to endpoint with ease and with as little distraction as possible.  

One must make sure that the goal is to provide a solution to meet the need of the customer and at the same time make efforts to maintain the user’s attention and loyalty.  

Here are 10 tips to help you design mobile apps with better UX-  

1. Keep it Simple! 

It’s the time for minimalism and that applies to mobile applications too. Any person using a certain mobile application has some goals in mind, if you create a UX that’s complicated, it might stray the person away from their goal or the user may get frustrated which results in a bad user experience. Too much clutter in form of design elements like text, buttons, images, etc., make any app complicated and unable to use. 

Keep your focus on creating a UX that is a perfect balance between a basic design and unique functionality.  

2. Easy Navigation  

All the unique content and features of your application are of no use if a user cannot access them easily. One of the most common mistakes app designers make is creating an app that’s impossible to navigate. Navigation isn’t where one needs to reinvent the wheel or use jargons that are unfamiliar to the user. App navigation should be intuitive and simple. It must allow simple ways for the user to go from one screen to another and go back without problems.  

One must also keep the small size of the mobile screen in mind, thus a navigation button mustn’t occupy too much space on the screen.  

3. Dodge the long-scroll problem  

When it comes to keeping users focused while reading long blocks of text then long-scroll is the solution. However, in apps where a user is prompted to complete a task then long-scroll can hinder the user experience. If a person has to scroll too much to reach the end goal then they might interest along the way and may abandon the task altogether.  

In cases where a user has to scroll through a catalog of products, using cards like ‘tap to extend’ or breaking up tasks into screens may help.  

4. Design your buttons with care  

There’s nothing more frustrating than having to click a button accidentally while browsing through an app or having to click a button that’s just too small. Thus, a button in your app should be a perfect size. For buttons, Apple iOS recommends a minimum target size of 44 pt wide- 44 pt tall and Android recommends a minimum target size of 48 dp wide – 48 dp tall.  

Moreover, make your buttons clickable, simple, and easy to reach.  

5. Font type & size matters  

Having to display enough information on a small mobile screen is one of the main challenges that a designer faces while creating an app. One must always keep in mind that the main focus of any app is the ease of customers. Thus, while displaying any text on the screen three things should be handled-  

  • A typeface that helps to maintain readability and usability in every size.
  • A legible font size i.e. 11 pts as recommended by Apple and Google, so that one can read it from a typical viewing distance without having to zoom in.
  • Use contract checkers to avoid issues between background and font.  

6. Spacing and Padding  

A small screen doesn’t necessarily warrant that one uses smaller text that occupies less space. Set your text size to increase the user readability experience. To improve legibility simply increase the line height or element spacing. Make sure the text or other elements do not overlap.  

Moreover, one should also keep in touch with the ever-evolving technology and update their apps if need be. For example, padding needs to be increased by a few pixels in curved phone displays to avoid any kind of unwanted touches.   

7. Efficient on-boarding  

The main goal of any onboarding is to show the user how your app adds value to their life. If your app’s onboarding process is long & complicated, and the user is facing trouble with the first few screens or your app, then it is possible that the user might get frustrated and end up abandoning the process altogether. 

Thus, creating efficient onboarding is the first but integral step toward attracting and retaining customers. 

8. Connect your social media  

According to Tracy Foster from ONA, a good UX should make it easy for the customer to connect with the business on different social media platforms. A mobile app should have clickable icons that directly link to different social media platforms of the business on every page of the app. Doing this helps user interaction, and increases the reach of the social media platforms. It also helps them understand and form a relationship with the brand.  

9. Make it personal  

Personalizing a UX gives a more relevant and unique experience to the user. Leverage the data to boost the user experience and make it personal for the user. Use data such as users' location, buying habits, previous searches, etc. to understand the user and use that data to give every user a personalized experience.  

Use features such as push and in-app notifications to tailor-make the experience for every user.  

10. Test & Modify  

One of the easiest ways to kill an app is for it to stay same over the time. Use the feedback your user is providing and incorporate it into your design. Keep testing your app and each time give the user what they want.  

Use tools such as Crazy Egg to track and understand user behavior patterns. It provides visual scroll and heat maps to show where a user clicks and what they do. Use this information to modify the app to increase user experience.  

At the end of the day, the goal of your mobile app is to create a seamless experience for your user. Always make sure to do your customer study before you start developing an app. Understand your target audience and use the aforementioned 10 tips to design a mobile app with better UX.  

Alekh Verma

CEO and Founder at eSearch Logix Technologies!

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