The 6 steps in any Mobile App Design Process

5 min read • Felipe Alvarez

Every type of design has its process. They all have similar basic steps, however, each type has its details that make the process completely different. In this post, we will go through the mobile app design process.

6 Steps of the Mobile App Design Process

We all use mobile apps. As users, we see and interact with the layout but as designers (or design enthusiasts) we must know the mobile app design process to understand how that final product is made.

1. Sketch

This is the first step in many design processes, and the mobile app design process is no exception.

The best thing about making an app is that you can start doing it right now for free. Why? Because the process of creating an app begins with a basic sketch, much like other creative endeavors.

Get that brilliant idea you have on your mind into reality, whether you're using a pen and paper or a tablet. Start with the most straightforward, orderly procedure you can think of. You want a product that is as simple to use as you can make it.

Don't start by including all of the features you can. But if you're truly amazed by a certain idea, don't dismiss it if it seems "crazy" because it may later serve as your differentiator.

And always remember: sketching isn't just doodling, you must spend a lot of time doing it. Combine elements from different sketches, and take the best out of every mockup.

2. Market Research

You must always conduct market research, the same way you would with any service or product. Who is your target customer, and what qualities do they typically seek in a product? What impact will their level of techy have on the way they download and use apps? How would your app make your target audience's life better?

Look through the app reviews of your competitors. Once you've done that, try installing and then using apps that are comparable to the one you want to make. What did they do correctly? Was there anything they missed?

There will be apps identical to yours among the millions of others available. However, you can still produce something distinctive and even superior.

Another important matter is the pricing. If you decide to charge for your application, how will you do it? Will your app be supported by advertisements, one-time payments, subscription services, or in-app purchases? How much is your target audience prepared to spend?

Learn about the inventive techniques of other developers. Gain knowledge from other people's mistakes by reading blogs or watching videos on how they created their apps.

Last but not least, try not to worry too much about this stage. There is no such thing as a flawless app, regardless of how fantastic your software is and how lovely your initial user interface is. The user experience advances as devices change. Even the most well-known apps worldwide frequently publish updates and bug fixes. In other words, you'll constantly be starting over. The research might be a bit boring but it is just as important as any further step of the mobile app design process.

3. Create a Mockup

Mockups, also known as wireframes, are preliminary sketches of the user interface (UI) of your software. There are several possibilities for wireframe tools, often known as mockup development software, ranging from free to paid.

Although using a wireframing tool is simple to use on your own, you can also work with a UI or UX (user experience) designer to turn the sketches into an interactive mockup.

By becoming more familiar with the fundamental UI components, you may fully engage in this process.

The app's control elements, which include buttons, checkboxes, and drop-down menus, let users enter data.

Users are guided through an app using navigational elements including search motors and sliders.

Users can get useful information through informational elements like notifications, progress bars, and pop-ups.

An app's fundamental building components are containers. They contain associated information and components that break up lengthy "pages" into manageable chunks.

A mockup shapes your app's final design but does not represent it. It's more important to focus on how the app functions than how it will appear in the end. A blueprint, that is. You can present your mockup to close friends, loved ones, coworkers, or potential investors.

4. Research on Graphic Design

It's time to polish the graphic design and make everything look nice. You can work on the design yourself or hire a professional designer, just like when making a mockup or wireframe. Of course, seeking professional assistance is the best option. You can either look for a freelance designer, hire an in-house, hire a classic design, or stepping-up and choose the most adequate and modern option: On-demand design. Agencies like The Design Project, offer a trendy and efficient service where a dedicated designer works by what you ask for. Maybe app designing isn't included in this service, but it's something you might discuss with the agency. A well-executed app design increases credibility with potential users, which increases the possibility of downloads.

Online stores offer a variety of free and paid app templates. Don't be scared to start using a template when you just want to get a great concept out there; beginning from scratch can be much more difficult.

An application with a templated design might appear very simple at first, but it's an excellent place to start because most templates already include a lot of the key UI components. Additionally, consumers may value familiarity above innovation when using an app.

The possibilities are endless in this case; however, remember that one parameter will always govern your work: usability. Be mindful of UX best practices.

5. Build Your App

It's coding time. You could do it yourself or  have the coding done by qualified mobile app developers

Front-end and back-end development are the two main subcategories that are typically mentioned when talking about app development.

What the end user sees and interacts with is front-end development. It consists of the app's visual, client-facing features. The front end is the actual face of the software. It is the only thing app users will ever see.

The cornerstone of a mobile app is its back end. Your databases are kept there, and administrators log in there to make changes. The actual events take place away from where users may see them. In other words, all the operational activity that keeps your app functioning takes place in the back end.

6. Launch Your App

You can submit and launch your mobile app through the App Store or Google Play Store once it has been created and is functional.

Carefully craft the store listing. Depending on what platform you're uploading to, there may be different requirements. The title, descriptions, contact information, images, promo videos, and other graphics are all included in a listing.

Also now is the time to start your launch-related marketing initiatives! Prepare responses to frequently asked questions in advance.

Avoid letting your ego get to you and prepare yourself to read some negative reviews since they will eventually happen. It's a glitchy world, so the most crucial thing is that you can swiftly address the most critical bugs. Users will value it when their helpful feedback is truly taken into account.

Sales, marketing, and customer service are endless and constant processes. Maintaining a responsible, approachable online following and monitoring analytics is helpful. You will be able to maintain an app that is useful with the assistance of data. Constantly keeping an eye on your product and upgrading it is a key point in the mobile app design process.

Final thoughts

In this post, we went through the mobile app design process to understand how a well-executed app is made. If designing an app, make sure the mentioned steps are being followed.

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