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Understanding Usability with No Code

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Understanding Usability with No Code

When it comes to User Experience (UX) design, it doesn’t matter how much experience you have, or what platform you’re using; it matters that you understand exactly what it is your users are looking for, what they need, and what appeals to them. You’re streamlining their experience through their design interaction.

No code platforms and application builders make UX design easier for citizen developers because they use the UX tenets in their backend development which allows people to easily create products and user flows with UX best practices built in.. This helps save time and money when designing and developing a new product or feature.

Ultimately, to get the best outcome during app development, you should also know the rules or qualities that  have a large influence on your UX design. This is where you should refer to factors from the Peter Morville UX Honeycomb:

  1. Useful – You’re not here to provide your users with something that’s useless to them. Make sure the content you’re providing is helpful, original, and valuable to them.
  2. Usable – You need to ensure your site works properly and doesn’t hinder users from doing what they want. A clear and well-designed user interface will take you a long way.
  3. Desirable – An appealing design does a lot to keep users on-site, and it inspires trust and confidence in the brand. A poorly designed site will have the opposite effect. 
  4. Findable – If users are having trouble navigating your site, it could be frustrating causing them to grow impatient and leave.
  5. Credible – Your design and content need to inspire trust in users. Certain design elements can play a role in whether users find your site or mobile app to be credible or not.

What is UX Design?

Now you know what qualities make up great UX design, but what is UX design? It’s the design process used in creating a product, app, website, marketing campaign, and more and trying to improve the experience when interacting with a business. Quality UX design should appeal to the user’s needs, desirable design trends, and ease of use – all while reflecting the quality and values of the business.

UX design is not to be mistaken with visual design. While both are highly important forms of design, and both share some of the same spaces – the goals are not completely identical. The purpose of visual design is to look the most appealing without putting a heavy focus on any of the other essential qualities that go into UX design. 

While visual design is important in UX design, UX design needs to make sure usability,and usefulness aren’t sacrificed for beautiful designs.

What are the best usability practices?

Whether you’re going with no code or traditional web or app design – it’s important that you’re following some best practices. The beauty behind the design of your app won’t matter if you fail to consider usability design principles.

Without focusing heavily on usability, you may consider your project as a piece of art, rather than something with a function or aim – it needs to provide a positive user experience if it’s going to be of use to both the business and prospective customer.

Responsivity

Your project needs to be responsive above all. If your site doesn’t function properly, display as intended, or load quickly – there’s a large chance that users will leave and search elsewhere. Around 53% of users will leave if the site or page doesn’t load within 3 seconds.

Simplicity

In order to make sure your users aren’t getting overwhelmed by the content or design of your website, simplicity is something you should aim to work into your design. Stick to minor use of colors, and try to break up the information that’s being displayed on each page.

Visual hierarchy

Sizing is a major tool you should be using to direct users’ attention to specific parts of your page. Visual hierarchy is using sizes of fonts, concentrations of color, and other eye-catching design elements to give the user the most important and appealing information first.

Navigation

The navigation on your website needs to be easy to read, and easy to understand. Design consistency is often considered when it comes to navigation, as that’s often the most easily adaptable feature of any website or app.

Consistency

Design consistency helps users to apply what they already know when navigating and using your site or app, making their experience much less frustrating.

Credibility

You need to make sure you’re displaying information in a way that allows users to believe you’re a credible source. Using only your design choices, the best method is through transparency. Be clear about your information and keep it simple and easy to digest.

What exactly is design consistency?

Design consistency is a highly important element when it comes to UX design. It plays a huge role in how usable your site is, and how recognizable your features and navigation will be – even to new users. By implementing a consistent, uniform design into your design process, you make it much easier and more intuitive for your users to learn how to navigate your website, right from the moment they start.

Design consistency can be viewed from both an internal and external perspective. Internal design consistency is how consistent you are with the rules of your design within your own webpage. For example, if you had a feature unique to your site, you could make sure it is used in a consistent manner across your site – despite it not existing like that on other sites. While it’s easier to learn, it’s not the best form of design consistency.

External consistency is using the same design choices as other forms of media, making it easier for users to understand your design the moment they see it. For more complicated processes or pages, it’s better to keep things simple with this kind of design consistency. For example, follow the same formula for your navigation menu that other sites might use – like the standard horizontal menu.

How to implement best practices for UX Design in Knack

You might have the misconception that UX design is something that only those with years of experience can do. Developers who have done it hundreds of times before, but that’s no longer the case – all thanks to app builders like Knack, a no-code development platform with UX sensibilities built into the solution – which allows you to create your own designs or work from the templates that are available to all users.

While it might take some practice, Knack handles the hardest parts for you. Instead, all you need to do is navigate through the different options, and work with Knack’s tools to help you build the ideal page. Whether you’re looking to create a database, an eCommerce page, automate your work, or easy-to-read reports, you can do so without having any experience in coding.

Don’t put everything on one screen

A key part of making sure your users are getting a positive experience is to make sure you’re breaking down the information. The readability of something may depend on how well you’ve broken it up, and how easy it is for users to find.

If all your information is contained on one page, users will have to look through all of it just to find the one thing they’re looking for. Breaking up your content allows you to include more forms of media and graphics – which in turn make your content more appealing and easier to digest.

Avoid overwhelming design

Information isn’t the only thing you should be breaking up. If your design is too lively, or you have too many pop-ups invading the screen, it can easily become overwhelming to the user. Instead, let these things be optional – rather than having the user see them as soon as they open the page. If it’s their first time visiting, you shouldn’t be offering them an opportunity to sign-up for your newsletter; they don’t even know if they’re going to find what they’re looking for.

Let the user know where they are in the app

A vital part of navigation is making sure the user knows what they’re looking at, and where they are on the website. There are a few ways you can do this, one of which is through the navigation menu or a sign at the top of the screen. A heading that matches the name on the navigation bar is a great way to remind the user which page of your website they’re visiting.

Conclusion

Creating a quality UX design doesn’t come down to experience in coding, or the platform you’re using. It comes down to how well you know your audience, and what you can do to design your app according to their needs – all without sacrificing the visual design and appeal of your project. You need a healthy balance in order to create an effective UX.