All You Need to Know About Wireframes

Feb 10, 2023Martín Etchegoyen

Usually, we tend to underestimate things that are familiar to us. It is also very likely that we underestimate those things that though new, seem very simple to process. And that is correct to some degree. However, when we are faced with complex cases and all measures are taken, a good and solid understanding of the basics could help us to find the right solutions. In this article, we will take a deeper glimpse at one of the most simple but often underrated activities in web development: the design of wireframes.

Wireframes can clarify your thinking and set a clear direction for your design. Most product designers are familiar with the concept of wireframes, defined as low-fidelity representations of a user interface, mainly used to demonstrate a product’s functionality. Wireframing is a vital part of the design process. Acting like blueprints for web and mobile apps, they help you set a foundation for your product and discover early on what works and does not.


A user-friendly interface is not an easy task, particularly when it comes to a large and complex product where there are a large number of entity types, dependencies, and elements that need to be organized logically. To design such complex products you should follow a top-down approach and wireframes design is the best technique that could help you with that.

What Are Wireframes

Wireframes are also known as screen blueprints because they are visual guides that represent the skeletal framework of a website or an app. Wireframing is the process of designing a wireframe. It is commonly used to lay out content and functionality on a page which takes into account user needs and user journeys. Wireframes are used early in the development process to establish the basic structure of a page before visual design and content are both added.

In the first instance, wireframing seems simple enough. And herein lies the major problem, which is that we tend not to pay enough attention to simple things. One way to help us get the most benefits from wireframing is to define the goals of the product or service. The main goal of wireframing that we could get is to show the team and stakeholders which entities, pages, and components the application are going to have and how these elements of the digital product will interact with each other.


Once established the goal definition, we can see how big the impact of wireframing is for both the development process and the final product. When we keep in mind the goals of the wireframing process, we still need to pay attention to the common pitfalls to avoid during wireframes design.

4 Reasons to Do Wireframes Design

In this section, we will mention some of the advantages of getting started with the design of wireframes, which are the following.

1. Estimate and Redefine the Scope of Work

Wireframes permit designers to quickly create a visual representation of the future product and demonstrate it to the team for the required revisions. Wireframes also help you show your team which screens the application is going to have, which elements and controls will be on each screen, and how all the elements will interact with each other. Plus, looking through wireframes is way faster than reading specifications. In addition, it helps you to avoid discrepancies in scope between the initial estimates and the final ones.

2. User Testing

The sooner you carry out user testing, the better. No one wants to roll out an application and find out that users do not get how to use it right. Wireframes can help designers get valuable feedback from potential users and not spend time developing complex interactive prototypes when they are not needed.

3. Hold a Demo for Clients

Getting immediate feedback from your clients and stakeholders is an essential component of the design process. Furthermore, we all have experienced multiple change requests from our stakeholders and that is expected. With wireframes, we could make this process more efficient. Making changes to prototypes requires more time and effort than making changes to wireframes, so it will let you be more agile and you do not have to waste extra time on rework.

4. Involve the Whole Team in the Product Design Stage

Each of us has experienced creating a top-notch design only to face development constraints. The use of wireframes allows us to involve developers in discussing arrangements at the early stages, enabling them to provide feedback and suggest changes before you start working on visual design. This way, you can speed up the design process and avoid wasting time and money

Wireframes: What Not to Do

In this section, we will describe the things that no one should do regarding wireframes and their due process.

First of all, you should not be creating wireframes for the sake of ‘box-checking’. You should not either be skipping the wireframes stage at all, not in any instance. Then, it is unadvised to prepare wireframes after the visual designs and it is also not recommended the not understand about the reason to use wireframes.

Wireframes should precede the stage of visual design, not vice versa. It is like deciding on the technology stack for your application after having the code written. Wireframe design lays the foundation for the quality of the design, and the better we understand the goal of this phase, then the more benefits we get.

Any agencies, freelancers, or businesses that lack knowledge of product design may welcome the practice of skipping wireframe design as it allows them to cut the project costs, but this decision may lead to potential failure in the long run. And you, as the designer, should explain why we are doing it, how it will help the final product, and how it could even save future expenses.

Final Thoughts

Now you know all that you need to know to go start yourself in the practice of designing wireframes. It is only a matter of you doing so and begin familiarizing yourself with it so you can upgrade your work as a designer to levels that you had never thought of.

Martín Etchegoyen

Martín Etchegoyen

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