It would seem there is no stopping the advance of mobile technology as it reaches into every part of our lives. While there are legitimate concerns about privacy and over-reliance on our mobile devices, for most of us, the incredible convenience of having pretty much everything we need right there in our pocket outweighs any misgivings that we might have.
On the other side of the coin comes vast commercial opportunities for app developers and entrepreneurs with an idea for the next big thing in app technology. Anyone with experience in this area will tell you that a great concept is not enough. Without great user experience, you might find yourself languishing on the mobile app scrap-heap, no matter how wonderful your idea.
If you’re looking to boost the uptake of your app, here are a few ideas to keep in mind:
Listen To Your Users
The first step to improving your app’s UX is to understand what your users feel about your app, and what changes they would like to see. There are numerous ways to obtain the feedback that you need, such as in-app user engagement tools, email surveys, focus groups and others. The crucial information that you glean will provide invaluable insights into which areas of your app you should be focusing, rather than second guessing your users’ mindset.
Keep it Streamlined
Planning an app development or improvement process is a delicate process, and the temptation to try to cram as many features as possible into the app is an all too common phenomenon. With few exceptions, apps that do a small number of things exceptionally well are far more successful than those that try to be everything to everyone.
Understand your core value proposition and where your strengths lie, then focus on delivering those in the best way possible, rather than getting distracted by bells and whistles. Nobody wants an app version of the car that Homer Simpson designed.
Function Vs Form
Of course, you want your app to blow people’s minds with stunning design.
That’s what users want, right? Well, as it turns out, only partly. While there is no question that a visually attractive interface plays a large role in whether people download an app, whether they continue to use it for the long term will depend far more on the functional usability and information architecture. Good UX will aim to strike a balance between these two important aspects.
Search, and You Shall Find
While many see it as an afterthought, the reality is that a huge percentage of app users will navigate using the in-built search function, rather than the navigation. Search has become such a dominant factor in our lives that it has almost become a reflex. A bit of time spent on the correct format and placement of your search bar and making the results page attractive and easily navigable will please a large percentage of your users.
Obviously, you want your users to be able to quickly and efficiently utilise all the core functions of your app. Onboarding is a great way to welcome a new user to your app and create a more personal connection while guiding them through the core features and processes. The last thing that you want is a new user wandering around aimlessly and then giving up in frustration.
A fun, interactive and simple onboarding experience can be the perfect introduction that will draw your users in and keep them coming back. Including an opt-out option will ensure that those who are confident enough to strike out on their own can get on with it, so there really is nothing to lose.
Most importantly, ensure that you get advice from a someone with UX experience to ensure that these and other boxes are ticked. That done, you will be well on your way to getting your app performing wonderfully.