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Articles about UI, UX, graphic design for mobile applications and websites, brand identity, design events, tips and resources.

design for business tubik blog

UX Design for B2B: Businesslike Strategies and Tips.

User experience design for business is getting more and more expressions today. A great diversity of companies make an important decision to come into play and fight for online presence. Various services are now available and executed online. In these conditions, designers working on the projects in this perspective, have to keep in mind the variety of business relations to offer the solutions corresponding the specific client’s goals. Continuing the theme of creating web and mobile products, today we suggest discussing the issues of design for the sphere of B2B services.

 

What is B2B?

 

B2B is the term used in business, marketing and economy to mark the relations of the sides in the business process like «business-to-business». B2B means that one company provides products or services aimed at the other companies’ business activities. The target audience of the offer is not individual customers but businesses. The nature of relations has a direct impact on business process, strategy, promotion and therefore any design stages involved in this scope. Not going far, if we are talking about outsourced design and development services, they are a direct example of B2B.

 

To get this example deeper, let’s imagine the company which sells physical goods to end consumers, let’s say, casual clothes. They need a website which will provide quite broad functionality for a big amount of users. The stakeholders monitor the market for web services and find out that hiring an outsource company for design and development is cheaper and more convenient for them than creating an in-company department for this purpose. This is the start of B2B relations as a digital agency provides their services for another business — a clothes shop — so that it could start e-commerce activity.

 

People involved in the design process for products and services have to consider the types of relations chosen for the particular project. Actually, the type of business scheme initially defines the target audience and nature of interactions which are key factors for efficient and user-friendly design solutions. Designing for business should supposedly involve methods of visual and content presentation which are different from the one presented directly to end users. It’s easy to see by examples of numerous landing pages: the ones aimed at companies use content, language, visual and graphic elements, placement of data blocks different from those which are targeted at individual buyers or users.

 

Neglecting the aspect of business relations increases the risk of creating the design which will not provide high conversion rate even being sophisticated, stylish and attractive visually. The psychological background behind design solutions has to support a particular business schemes or strategy. Here in Tubik, we have had broad experience of design for all the mentioned schemes so below you will find some ideas we would like to share on the basis of that practice.

 

design for business

 

Aspects to consider in design for B2B

 

Designing for B2B, it’s important to remember that:

— design solutions should consistently strengthen branding and company policy. The quality of design says much to the potential clients which the interface has to attract. A good dress is a card of invitation, a good mind is a letter of recommendation — it worked years ago and it still works now. Quality of design created for a website of B2B service is actually an integral part of their image and therefore profits. Remember, that B2B differs from B2C: the stakes, as well as the expenses, are higher, the number of leads can be limited with the specific nature of services, the decisions about the deal may take weeks and even month before they are agreed upon. The website or app design must present the company or service as highly-professional from the first seconds of the interaction and visual perception.  It should build a reliable bridge between the sides looking for collaboration. That’s why businessmen in this sphere are recommended to involve professional designers into the process while designers have to do their best to understand the business goals and research target audience.

 

— people become more and more open and sociable, not only in personal but also in professional aspects, and social networks present the great ground for that aim. Implementation of design elements in social network marketing of B2B company, using the same style, voice, corporate colors and graphics, specially designed branded items and the like is one more way to strengthen brand awareness by means of design. Design has to be consistent whenever the B2B company is presented: headers and banners, logos, style of photos in social network account and on the website need to feature the same stylistic approach. In this way, design makes branding more recognizable, comprehensive and solid.

 

— consistent and a thought-out content strategy combining visual and textual material with the careful selection of visuals and copy is able to fulfill all the stages of sales funnel and bring better conversion of the website, landing page or application of B2B company;

 

— concise and minimalistic solutions in design and copywriting work efficiently in most cases because they save time and effort of busy stakeholders and entrepreneurs. The effective variant of scenario can take place when they are given concise core information at the first stage of interaction but always have the chance to read more if they are interested (as well as avoid reading huge copy blocks if they don’t want). Certainly, this solution should be based on thorough user research, but it has a high potential to make user experience positive;

 

— business is done differently in different countries. It should be always considered together with the nature of business relations as the factor making a considerable impact on the level of trust and wish to collaborate. Selection of graphic content and layout of the elements on the screen or page should go under analysis in this perspective as some graphic elements, photos, gestures, word combinations, color choices which are efficient and clear for one region or culture can be totally unacceptable or even offensive for the others. Creation of several landing pages targeted locally can be an effective solution;

 

— the aim of a website or other piece of design presenting B2B company is not to grow a huge flow of traffic but to engage and direct leads which belong to the target audience and are potentially open to take part in business collaboration or partnership good for both sides. It’s important to keep in mind that retaining customers, in this case, plays not less role than involving them in the game.

ux_design_practices_article

 

Design strategies for B2B

 

The strategies mentioned below may work not only for B2B but for any kind of interfaces aimed at business. Still, in B2B their role in getting profit may be more significant.

 

Get CTA elements seen instantly. Call-to-action buttons should be perfectly visible. Doesn’t it work that way for any kind of website, not only B2B? Yes, you are right. But in B2B the price of a click is much higher while visitors are often horribly busy and don’t tend to spend much time looking for a button on the page. Apply color, shape or orientation contrast, test the most effective placement and think over the copy on it — all that stuff may have a crucial effect on conversion rates.

 

Make value proposition noticeable. Getting to the website, the visitors should immediately understand why it is beneficial to them. Don’t make them search for the reason to cooperate with this B2B service — they won’t do it. Use the catchy slogan or tagline which will express the value proposition briefly and clearly, and take care of its visual performance. Typographic hierarchy will help user’s eye to catch it first, appropriate fonts will add the mood and style to the message.

 

Don’t overwhelm users with information: prioritize content. There is a big temptation for a business to show all its strong sides at maximum. However, it may lead to the website with a huge amount of data which might get the visitor confused, annoyed or frightened. It is especially hard in the cases when visual hierarchy isn’t thought-out and tested properly: the pages risk transforming into a mess which cannot be scanned quickly. So, prioritization is both designer’s and user’s friend here: apply design techniques and layout which will strengthen the visual performance of the core information.

 

Make copy blocks digestible. The debates around the theme of copy blocks are still hot and actual: which copy is better, long or short? Actually, both may be effective. As we mentioned in the article devoted to landing pages, a decision on the amount of copy has to be based on thorough research and testing as it directly and highly influences conversions.  For example, if it presents a famous company product or service or informs about special offers, sometimes short and concise copy is enough to encourage users to buy or know more. However, if a new unknown product or service is presented, it may be important to provide users with more information persuading them to follow the call to action. Whatever is the decision, the copy content should be given in scannable blocks which aren’t too big so that the user didn’t think reading will take too much time. Scanning the blocks allows for faster understanding if the copy brings useful information.

 

Keep core data available from the pre-scroll area. Users usually decide on staying on the website or leaving it very quickly. It is really a matter of minutes or even seconds. That is why all the key information would better be seen in the pre-scroll area, including the value proposition and ability to contact the duty holders. 

 

Activate the power of color psychology. Colors present the great support in sending the right message. Being attentive to target audience’s preferences, designers can select the colors not only on the basis of their nice looks but also color psychology which explains associations people have with colors.

 

Apply catchy visuals sending a message. A picture is worth a thousand words — and that’s not just because it’s more appealing or beautiful but also because in the vast majority of cases, it is perceived faster than words. Moreover, the attractive visual content, be it a photo, illustration or poster may become another source of informing the user about the value proposition provided by the company.

 

Consider promo video content. Promo videos present the popular trend in business schemes now as they enable to inform users about the value propositions and benefits in the fast and original way. However, it may influence the loading speed of the page so this decision needs to be well-weighed.

 

Apply landing pages for special offers. Landing pages allow for focusing user’s attention on the specific information instead of making them search for it around the website. It is especially important is the sales funnel starts out of the website.

 

Don’t forget about the testimonials and signs of trust. Word-of-mouth is the best advertising, especially in the B2B sphere. Making a decision on collaboration, people tend to consider references, testimonials and other signs of trust from the previous clients as positive factors. So, make sure they are available and easily found.

 

Let users contact duty holders from any point of their journey. Contacts can be presented in various formats. They can reveal the data such as phone number and location, emails, links to messengers, contact forms and instant chat window. Making the phone numbers clickable is supportive as many users now browse from their smartphones and may want to call right from there. The address can be also clickable opening the screenshot or map showing how to find the location. The solutions have to be based on thoughtful user research setting target audience’s expectations, level of tech literacy and the most convenient ways of contact for them. 

 

usability_interfaces_ux_design_tubik

 

Hopefully, the mentioned strategies will help not only designers but also entrepreneurs who want to know more about design issues influencing profitability. Soon, we will share more posts devoted to other numerous aspects of design for business.

 

Recommended reading

 

UX Design for E-Commerce: Principles and Strategies.

The Role of Branding in UI Design

Business-Oriented Design. Know Your Target.

Short but Vital. Key Abbreviations in Design for Business.

Business Terms in Design for E-Commerce. Sales Basics.

Two Types of User Motivation: Design to Satisfy.

Sell Like Hotcakes: UI Designs for E-Commerce.

Feel Homey. Handy Tips for Home Page Design.

Landing Page. Direct Flight to High Conversion.

11 Profitable Strategies for E-commerce UI Design


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CTA_buttons_design_tips_tubik_blog

Call for Attention. Powerful CTA Button Design.

An effective interaction system of a digital product consists of small elements which have their tasks and functions. To make the sufficient system, it’s vital to pay attention to all the details.

 

Buttons are core interactive components of user interfaces which play a significant role in the quality UX as well as conversion rates of websites and applications. UI buttons vary according to their features and can be divided into different types. A new article is devoted to the type called call-to-action (CTA) buttons covering their essence, role in the intuitive navigation and the importance of business goals. Let’s see what makes CTA buttons stand out from the crowd learning from the best practices.

 

mobile interaction design tubik blog

 

What’s a CTA button and why is it important?

 

A call-to-action (CTA) button is an interactive element of any user interface both web and mobile: its major aim is to induce people to take certain actions that present a conversion for a particular page or screen, for example purchase, contact, subscribe etc.

 

Traditionally, CTA buttons are easy to notice, even more, designers intentionally create them that way so that people couldn’t resist to clicking it. That’s why they are usually bold buttons containing microcopy with a particular call-to-action (e.g. “Learn more” or “Buy it now”) which encourages us to push it.

 

Lead generation and purchase rise are the basic business goals which calls-to-action can be created for. When a button design is compelling enough to immediately attract the attention of potential clients, it can entice them to click and go to the next stage such as filling a short contact form or making a preorder of a product.

 

ux_design_practices_article

 

This way website visitors and app users can be led through a sales funnel from one stage to another helping them to learn the details about the product or service. Even professionally worked out content may not guarantee the high level of user engagement. Without CTA buttons people are more likely to scan content quickly and just leave it untouched.

 

Some may think that a sufficient call-to-action button design applies only a big size and bright color to accomplish all its objectives. Still, there are much more aspects ensuring the effectiveness of CTAs. Let’s see what they are along with the practical examples of their appropriate usage.

 

choice of color in UI design

 

What makes a powerful CTA button?

 

Size

 

Size is one of the most common tools helping to divide UI components according to their importance. The bigger an element is, the more noticeable it becomes. Since CTAs’ prior goal is to draw users’ attention, designers usually try to make them stand out among the other buttons on the screen, especially via noticeable size.

 

Large buttons have high chances to be noticed and clicked still you have to keep some limits. A compelling call-to-action button is usually big enough to be quickly found but not too big so that the visual composition and hierarchy of the layout wouldn’t be spoiled. Market leaders often provide recommendations on the effective sizes of buttons in their guidelines. For example, Apple says that CTAs in mobile UI should be at least 44Х44 pixels, while Microsoft recommends 34Х26 pixels.

 

burger_app_ui_animation_tubik

 

Color and shape

 

Visually attractive size is only one aspect of a powerful CTA. To make the buttons even more noticeable it’s vital to choose sufficient color and shape. The thing is that human mood and behavior highly relates to the visual surroundings. Our mind reacts to colors and shapes while we usually do not notice it. The moment our eyes perceive a color, they connect with the brain which gives signals to the endocrine system releasing hormones responsible for the shifts in mood and emotions. Psychology science has specific branches devoted the influence of different colors and shapes on our consciousness. In our previous articles, we described the role of this impact on the design solution. Here are brief guides on the common meaning which colors and shapes have.

 
Color meanings:
 

  • Red. Confidence, youth, and power.
  • Orange. Friendly, warm, and energetic.
  • Yellow. Happiness, optimism, and warmth.
  • Green. Peace, growth, and health.
  • Blue. Trust, security, and stability.
  • Purple. Luxurious, creative, and wise.
  • Black. Reliable, sophisticated, and experienced.
  • White. Simple, calm, and clean.

 
Shape meanings:
 

  • Squares and rectangles meanings: discipline, strength, courage, security, reliability.
  • Triangles meanings: excitement, risk, danger, balance, stability.
  • Circles, ovals, and ellipses meanings: eternity, female, universe, magic, mystery.
  • Abstract shapes meanings: the duality of meaning, uniqueness, elaborate.

 

Traditionally, CTA buttons look like horizontal rectangles since people got used to perceiving this shape as clickable buttons. In addition, it is recommended to design CTAs with rounded corners because they are thought as they point inside of the button drawing attention to the copy.

 

Color choice depends on various aspects which make the process more complicated. Designers need to consider such factors as the basic color of the composition as well as potential preferences and psychological peculiarities of the target audience. There is one condition which is vital to keep in mind while choosing colors for CTA: buttons and background colors should be contrasting enough so that CTAs would stand out from the other UI components.

 

dating_app_landing_page_tubik

 

 

Placement

 

The placement of CTA buttons is crucial for their capability. If they are located in the areas where users’ eyes can’t catch them, other visual aspects such as color and size might not work efficiently. But how to understand what placement is more prosperous?

 

Lots of studies have shown that before reading a web page people scan it to get a sense of whether they are interested. Considering this fact, designers may learn the most prominent scannable areas and place call-to-actions within the user’s path.

 

According to different studies, including the publications by Nielsen Norman Group, UXPin team, and others, there are several popular scanning patterns for web pages, among which “F” and “Z” patterns.

 

F-pattern is the most common for web pages with big amount of content such as blogs, news platforms. A user first scans a horizontal line on the top of the screen, then moves down the page a bit and reads across the horizontal line which usually covers a shorter area. And the last one is a vertical line down on the left side of the copy where they look for keywords in the paragraphs’ initial sentences.

 

Z-pattern is a typical model of scanning for landing pages or websites not loaded with copy and not requiring scrolling down the page, which means that all the core data is visible in the pre-scroll area. A user first scans across the top of the page starting from the top left corner, looking for important information, and then goes down to the opposite corner at a diagonal, finishing with the horizontal line at the bottom of the page, again from left to right.

 

These patterns allow designers to place CTAs in the spots of highest attention, such as top corners and put the other points requiring attention along the top and bottom lines. Also, it is a good idea to place CTA buttons at the center of the layout, especially when it isn’t overloaded with other UI elements.

 

gourmet_herbs_website_design_tubik

 

Microcopy

 

Microcopy plays a significant role for the efficiency of call-to-action. It is defined as the small components of text which serve as hints for users. To be more specific, microcopy includes buttons and menu copy, error messages, security notes, terms and conditions, as well as any kind of instructions on product usage.

 

CTA microcopy is actually a call which tells users what action they will take if they click the button. The powerful CTA microcopy is usually short but consistent so that it could quickly catch users’ attention.

 

bright_vibe_calendar_app_ui_tubik

 

Call-to-action buttons are one of the most powerful sales tools in e-commerce and an influential factor of good conversion of a page or screen. Designers need to understand the importance of CTAs and pay deep attention to all the details having an impact on their performance. Follow Tubik Blog to get more tips on CTA design.


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color_glossary_in_design_tubik_blog

Design Glossary: Color. Terms and Definitions.

Color is one of the fundamentals which design is built of. It can be a powerful tool in the expert’s hands affecting numerous factors which are vital for the compelling visual perception. Color has a significant impact on our mind. It changes the way we feel about an object within a few seconds as well as makes people react and even take certain actions.

 

At first sight color science may seem not that difficult to master but diving into the details it’s obvious that there are many peculiarities which demand to be comprehended. In the article Color Theory: Brief Guide For Designers, we touched upon the basics of the science helping designers in their craft. Today we gathered a handy glossary with the essential terms of the color theory which will help graphic and UI designers get the better understanding of how color works.

 

web and app UI design

Add the Color Illustration

 

Color

 

Before we step any further, it’s important to figure out the essence of color itself. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as a phenomenon of light (such as red, brown, pink, or gray) or visual perception that enables one to differentiate otherwise identical objects. Simply put, color is a quality of an object which is caused due to the light being reflected or emitted by this object. Color can be verified visually by measurement of its properties such as hue, saturation, chromaticity, and value. To gain proper awareness of color meaning let’s define its characteristics.

 

Color properties

 

Hue

 

The term hue is often mistaken for the color so it needs to be cleared out. First, we should understand that “color” is a general term which people use to name all the hues, tints, and tones. On the other hand, a hue is exactly the thing we mean asking “what color is it?”. Basically, it is a family of twelve pure and bold colors presented on the color wheel.

 

A hue serves as a basic material which can be transformed in three different ways — tinting, shading and toning. Depending on the applied technique, a hue is modified into tint, shade, or tone.

 

They are easy to distinguish. A tint is created by mixing a hue with white, while a shade is a mix of a hue and black. Toning is a more delicate process because it requires adding both black and white the reason why the results may seem more natural than shades and tints.

 

color-glossary-tints-tones-shades

Source

 

Value

 

As we said above colors have certain characteristics by which they can be recognized. Value is a property telling how light or dark a color is. The characteristic is defined by the level of whiteness. The more white has been added to a hue, the higher value it receives.

 

Chromaticity

 

Chroma, or chromaticity, shows the purity of a hue. The characteristic is measured by the presences of white, grey, or black in a color. Twelve basic hues described above have the highest level of chromaticity since they don’t contain any additional elements. Colors with high chroma usually look bold and vivid.

 

Saturation

 

This characteristic has much in common with value and chroma, so sometimes they may be mistaken. Still, it’s vital to understand the differences. Unlike two previous properties, saturation doesn’t apply mixing hues with any other colors. It is about how a color looks under different lighting conditions. Saturation describes how bold or pale a color is according to its look in the daylight and weak light. The property is also known as the intensity of a color.

 

color theory design tubik

 

Color wheel

 

If you had any lessons related to painting, you must have seen the circle consisting of different colors. It is called the color wheel and helps to understand how different colors relate to each other and how they can be combined. The color circle is usually built of primary, secondary and tertiary colors which are also known as hues.

 

The color circle was created in 1666 by Isaac Newton in a schematic way and since then it has gone through many transformations but still remains the main tool for color combination.The idea is that the color wheel must be made that way so colors would be mixed appropriately.

 

color theory design tubik

Source

 

Color types

 

Primary colors

 

They are three pigment colors that cannot be formed by any combination of other colors. The primary colors serve as the basis of a whole system.The primary colors vary depending on the type of color system. A subtractive system is based on cyan, magenta, and yellow, while red, green and blue colors form the additive system. And the painting system RYB includes red, yellow and blue.

 

Secondary colors

 

These colors appear by the combination of two primary colors. Since each system has different basic colors, the secondary colors vary too. Here is a schematic explanation of secondary colors appearing in each system.

 
RGB:

  • green+red=yellow
  • red+blue=magenta
  • blue+green=cyan

 

CMYK:

  • yellow +magenta=red
  • magenta+cyan=blue
  • cyan+yellow=green

 

RYB:

  • yellow+red=orange
  • red+blue=purple
  • blue+yellow= green

 

Tertiary colors

 

The mix of the primary and secondary colors gives us the tertiary colors which usually have two-word names such as red-violet or yellow-orange.

 

Cool, warm and neutral colors

 

All the colors we described above can also be divided into three types: cool, warm and neutral.

 

Cool colors are the ones on the green-blue side of the color wheel. They are called cool since they bring the feeling of cold. Warm colors are opposite to the previous due to the warm associations which they possess. Yellow, orange and red are the hues relating to the warm type. Last but not least, neutral colors are absent on the color wheel including gray, brown and beige.

 

weather app design UI

 

Color systems

 

RGB

 

RGB color system considers red, blue, and green as primary colors. The system is the basis of all colors used on the screen. The combination of primary colors in equal proportions of this system produces secondary colors which are cyan, magenta and yellow, but you need to remember that the more light you add, the brighter and lighter the color becomes. Results obtained by mixing additive colors are often counterintuitive for people accustomed to the subtractive color system of paints, dyes, inks and other tangible objects.

 

RYB

 

RYB (red, yellow, blue) is also known as painting color system often used in art education, especially in painting. It served as a foundation for the modern scientific color theory which determined that cyan, magenta, and yellow are the most effective set of three colors to combine. This is how the color model CMY has been formed.

 

CMYK

 

The system CMY has been modified with the appearance of the photomechanical printing. It received the key component meaning black ink and the system was named CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black). Without this additional pigment, the shade closest to black would be muddy brown. Today this color system is mostly used in the printed design.

 

color theory design tubik

Source

 

Color schemes

 

The color balance is vital in design since users make their impression of the website or application by the first look, and colors have the big influence. Designers distinguished the basic color schemes, aka color harmony, which work effectively.

 

Monochromatic

 

It is based on one color with various tones and shades of it. The monochromatic harmony is always a winning choice since it’s hard to make a mistake and create the distasteful color scheme.

 

business cards design

Deetu Business Cards

 

Analogous

 

To create analogous harmony, you need to use colors located right next to each other on the color wheel. This type of color scheme is used for the design where no contrast is needed including the background of web pages or banners.

 

binned logo animation design

Binned Logo Animation

 

Complementary

 

The complementary scheme is the mix of colors placed in front of each other on the color wheel. This scheme is opposite to analogous and monochromatic since it aims to produce high contrast. For example, the orange button on the blue background is hard to miss in any interface.

 

home budget web interface

Home Budget Dashboard

 

Split-Complementary

 

This scheme works similar to the previous one but it employs more colors. For instance, if you choose the blue color you need to take two others which are adjacent to its opposite color meaning yellow and red. The contrast here is less sharp than in complementary scheme but it allows using more colors.

 

financial_service_website_tubik

Financial Service Website

 

Triadic

 

When the design requires more colors you can try triadic scheme. It is based on three separate colors which are equidistant on the color wheel. To save the balance in this scheme, it is recommended to use one color as a dominant, the other as accents.

 

dating_app_landing_page_tubik

Dating App Landing Page

 

Tetradic/Double-Complementary

 

The tetradic color scheme is for the experienced designers since it is the most difficult to balance. It employs four colors from the wheel which are complementary pairs. If you connect the points on the chosen colors they form the rectangle.The scheme is hard to harmonize but if you do everything right, the results may be stunning.

 

business_card_app_animation_tubik

Business Card App

 

Let’s sum up with the prosaic quote by RyPaul: “The whole point is to live life and be — to use all the colors in the crayon box.” Learn how to use colors effectively both in your life and work and the results will please you.

 

Recommended reading

 

Color Theory: Brief Guide For Designers.
Color in Design: Influence on Users’ Actions.
Color Matters. 6 Tips on Choosing UI Colors.
3C of Interface Design: Color, Contrast, Content.
Color in UI Design. Look on the Bright Side.


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most popular design articles in tubik blog

20 Most-Read Design Articles by Tubik in 2017

The year melting away has been really fruitful for Tubik Blog: we shared around 100 articles and case studies with our readers and subscribers. Striking the balance of 2017, today we have collected here the list of posts which were most-read, shared and liked during the year. They are devoted to the variety of design issues in the domains of UI and UX, information architecture, logo and branding, design for business and marketing. So, welcome to review them together to check what themes have been found the most actual.

 

home page design article

 

20 most popular articles

 

Psychology in Design. Principles Helping to Understand Users: the post about general principles of psychology which can help designers know users better and create user-friendly web and mobile interfaces.

 

Best Practices for Website Header Design: the set of insights on the definition, structure, and composition of a website header as a strategic part of the website with a variety of examples and approaches.

 

UI/UX Design Glossary. Navigation Elements: another set of UI/UX Design Glossary, explaining terms in the field of user interface design. Focused on navigation elements: buttons, menus, switches, icons etc.

 

Color Theory: Brief Guide For Designers: the article concentrated on the basics of color theory and color combinations in design. Learn more about the color wheel, RGB, CMYK and models of color harmony.

 

Color in Design: Influence on Users’ Actions: considerations devoted to the issue of using various colors in user interfaces and branding design, associations and the influence of color choice on user behavior.

 

Mobile UI Design: 15 Basic Types of Screens: mobile applications evolve with user’s needs offering new functionality, still, there are screens common for many apps and they are the focus of this article.

 

Gestalt Theory for Efficient UX: Principle of Similarity: the article considering Gestalt theory application in interface design: this time it’s focused on similarity principle of effective content grouping in UI.

 

Gestalt Theory for UX Design: Principle of Proximity: the second post in the series devoted to applying Gestalt principles in design of user-friendly web and mobile interfaces, today about the principle of proximity.

 

How Human Memory Works: Tips for UX Designers: insights into the ways human memory works and the factors of its influence on UX design solutions for websites and mobile apps.

 

Information Architecture. Basics for Designers: the article providing insights into the basics of information architecture for designers and setting the link between IA, UX and UI for websites and applications.

 

Tips on Applying Copy Content in User Interfaces: considerations on some essential points on the effective use of text in web and mobile user interfaces: visual hierarchy principles for copy content.

 

Gamification in UX. Increasing User Engagement: the post is centered on the aspect of gamification applied to mobile applications and websites for engaging UX design and user-friendly interactions.

 

Typography in UI: Guide for Beginners: In design, every layout element plays its role. This post presents the insights into the basics of typography for web and mobile UI to make the copy powerful and effective.

 

Case Study: Upper App. UI Design for To-Do List: the case study about UI design created by the Tubik team for Upper App, simple and elegant free to-do list, motivating users and boosting productivity.

 

Case Study: Vinny’s Bakery. UI Design for E-Commerce: the design case study that looks and feels tasty: check the details of UI/UX and animation for a website presenting a small elite bakery selling home-made bread.

 

Lean and Mean: Power of Minimalism in UI Design: dive into cases when less is more: the definition, history, features and benefits of minimalism applied in UI design for websites and mobile applications.

 

Knock Design into Shape. Psychology of Shapes: the psychology of shapes is helpful for creating user-friendly interfaces. The post features the meanings of different shapes and their influence on design solutions.

 

UX Design for E-Commerce: Principles and Strategies: the general insights on design for e-commerce websites and mobile applications in business, UX and UI perspectives: tips and strategies to consider.

 

Feel Homey. Handy Tips for Home Page Design: the set of effective tips enhancing usability of home pages for various websites. Check the design strategies for information, interaction and appearance.

 

Golden Ratio. Bring Balance in UI Design: The article devoted to golden ratio as an effective technique for web and mobile user interfaces: check how it brings balance and aesthetics into UI design.

 

Bonus: Free ebook and the review of 2017 design trends

 

Problem-Solving Web Design. Free E-Book by Tubik: the free e-book by the Tubik team presents the overview of theory, practices and design cases for user-friendly websites and landing pages.

 

Review of Popular Interface Design Trends in 2017 — traditional year-in-review post observing the most popular trends of 2017 in user interface design for websites and mobile applications: UX approaches and examples.

 

most popular design articles in tubik blog

 

Wishing you great holidays and productive new year, we are already working over a new plan to write content which is helpful and useful for the global design community. Huge thanks to all our readers for support and loyalty and best regards from all the Tubik team!


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logo_design_tips_tubik_blog

Shape and Color in Logo Design. Practical Cases.

Paul Rand said that design is the silent ambassador of your brand. Continuing his thought we can add that a logo design is a heart of a brand identity which presents a personality of a company or a product. If you want to set the connection with the target audience and tell the story of a brand, starting with a logo would be a good choice.

 

Today we describe visual components of a logo which are vital for compelling visual perception and also show practical cases of applying psychology of color and shapes in design for branding.

 

Psychology in logo design

 

To make an effective logo, designers have to consider the tiniest components which it is built of and think about the influence they will have on potential clients. The science studying the impact of various factors on human’s mind and behavior is known as psychology. Knowledge of psychological principles helps to understand human aspirations and motivations which means designers can predict the possible users’ reactions to the certain solutions.

 

People may not notice but mind often reacts to visual objects affecting the emotions and behavior. In our previous articles, we described two psychology branches which study the impact of shapes and colors on people’s visual perception. In short, each color and shape tends to be perceived with its own meaning, so when we look at a visual object our brain receives the certain message and reacts according to what we see.

 

Comprehending the role of the color and shape psychology, design expert can control the meaning a logo contributes. Each component chosen thoughtfully helps people read the meaning of the logo right.

 

logo design

 

Color in logo design

 

The research provided by Colorcom showed that it takes only 90 seconds for people to make a subconscious judgment about a product and between 62% and 90% of that assessment is based on color alone. That’s why the success of the brand strategy depends largely upon the colors chosen for the logo design.

 

Colors are a vital factor for not only the visual appearance of products but also brand recognition. In the article Color in Design: Influence on Users’ Actions we described the meanings of common colors in branding and here is a short sum up.

 

Red. Confidence, youth, and power.
Orange. Friendly, warm, and energetic.
Yellow. Happiness, optimism, and warmth.
Green. Peace, growth, and health.
Blue. Trust, security, and stability.
Purple. Luxurious, creative, and wise.
Black. Reliable, sophisticated, and experienced.
White. Simple, calm, and clean.

 

The color choice shouldn’t be based on the common meaning alone. Visual perception is quite individual for everyone so the color effects may be different because of the factors such as age, culture, and gender. For example, children like yellow color pretty much, but as we become adults it usually seems less attractive. Moreover, there are many cultural differences in color definition. To make sure the color will work effectively for a brand strategy, it’s vital to consider the preferences of the target audience.

 

andre logo design by tubik

 

Shape in logo design

 

As we already mentioned in the article devoted to the psychology of shapes, all the visual objects can be analyzed in terms of shape. People may not always notice what figures and shapes surround them still they have a great impact on our consciousness and behavior. Many years of research and tests have helped professionals to define what meaning each shape typically brings and how it can influence human perception. Let’s take a closer look.

 

Squares and rectangles meanings: discipline, strength, courage, security, reliability.
Triangles meanings: excitement, risk, danger, balance, stability.
Circles, ovals, and ellipses meanings: eternity, female, universe, magic, mystery
Spirals meanings: growth, creativity, calmness, intelligence
Natural shapes meanings: originality, organic, balance, refreshment
Abstract shapes meanings: the duality of meaning, uniqueness, elaborate.

 

Creating a logo, designers should work on the shapes applied as well as pay attention to the typeface chosen for the wordmark.

 

passfold-logo-tubikstudio

 

Practical cases

 

Tubik designers have great experience in creating compelling brand signs. Let’s see the logo design examples applying color and shape psychology.

 

LunnScape

 

The logo was created for LunnScape company specializing in landscaping services to commercial properties like office and courtyard spaces, parks etc. A brand sign is presented with a mascot of a dragonfly. LunnScape company is based in Florida and the creature is a perfect representative of a regional fauna. Moreover, a logo with an insect helps customers understand the nature of the services.

 

The dragonfly illustration has a simplified style so its wings look like flower leaves. The logo consists of several colors. Turquoise circle with a dragonfly gives a solid stamp effect and brings calming feelings. Also, the color is associated with refreshment and energy, so it creates the right mood around the brand. The wings of the dragonfly combine yellow and pink colors. Together these colors symbolize joy, warmth and a bit of sensitivity making a dragonfly look playful. The wordmark typography complements and also unveils the core brand services of the company due to the thin and elegant font.

 

lunnscape_logo_final-version

 

Andre

 

One more identity design project connected to the theme of landscape and nature was logo for Andre Landscape. The final choice was made on the combination mark presenting the mascot in clear simple forms and elegant lettering echoing the rounded shapes. Symbol resulted in a new shape combining the visual concept of a bird and of a leaf in one image based on the circle. The rounded shape is easily associated with universe and eternity, quite positive stuff to transfer the idea of professional land care. Color combination is also connected with the nature of the offered services with vibes of green and natural background.

andre logo design by Tubik

 

Binned

 

This is the brand sign for trash bin cleaning service called Binned. A logo is presented with a lettermark featuring capital B as it associates with the brand name. The lines in the letter take the shape of waves evoking a sense of water and cleanliness. The logo is followed by the wordmark of the entire brand name. The chosen font is simple yet bold which makes it look neat and reflecting the mood of a brand.

 

The color palette includes tints of blue and green which give string associations of cleanness and refreshment. In addition, the blue color often represents some corporate images since the blue is the color of trust. It usually shows reliability, may give users calming feelings.

 

binned logo animation design

 

Reborn

 

The logo presents a self-service Chinese restaurant Reborn. The major philosophy of a brand is bringing in the modern way of automated ordering food in the restaurant industry and setting the link between traditions of healthy food and innovations. To transfer all these ideas and create the effective brand image, the red silk ribbon was featured as the initial letter in the wordmark.

 

The ribbon creates spiral shapes which bring the feeling of creativity and innovation. Moreover, it features the slight movement showing the restaurant as a modern business which moves with times.

 

Red is a traditional Chinese color so a logo lets customers understand the specifics of cuisine served at the restaurant. Also, red color demonstrates the confidence and youth of the service as well as contributes to better brand awareness due to its brightness.

brand identity design case study

 

Motion

 

This is a logo concept for modern dance studio called Motion. The company participates in multiple directions of the dancing sphere like organizing classes and workshops, events and tournaments.

 

The brand sign has a shape of a circle. Originally, this shape symbolizes eternity since it has no beginning or end. This way, a logo highlights the diversity of company services. Moreover, one of the common meanings for circles is motion so it perfectly reflects the brand’s name.

 

This logo concept provides the variety of color performance showing the flexibility of general brand strategy. The presented options include yellow, green, and blue colors. Yellow is a principal color which brings the warm and playful emotions. Green and blue colors symbolize balance and harmony.

 

motion_tubik_studio_icon_logo_branding

 

OrBeat

 

Another round logo was designed for OrBeat, the online platform for sharing digitized sound material like music, speech and specific sound sets on the Internet. In addition, the service has the functionality of a social network so the shape sets the association with the circle of friends. Users can create their unique playlists, leave comments, listen to the tracks online and share their sound collection with friends from other social networks.

 

So, setting the connection with the themes of music adding dynamics to everyday life, communication and expressing the metaphor of orbit, the logo is based on rounded shapes and features the variety of shades associated with diverse content on the platform.

 

Logo design by Tubik

 

Whizzly

 

The logo is made for the social network Whizzly showcasing talents and sharing creative projects. The mascot is a monkey which looks quite pretentious because of the sunglasses. The choice of the character can be explained by the common associations connected with this animal. Monkeys are energetic funny representatives of fauna and they know how to draw attention. Rounded forms make the image dynamic and friendly.

 

As the brand’s target audience are talented people, the monkey displays their eccentricity. The colors include the gradient of violet and blue. They are easily associated with the lights which are often used on the stage. Also, we can see the reflection of the brand’s name in the sunglasses. It ensures better brand recognition.

 

whizzly_mascot_logo_design_tubik

 

fOxygenic

 

Here’s the concept applying branding symbol for an app icon. It features a logo for fOxygenic, a mobile application which represents a social network for people loving the active life, open-air sports and events. As you see, the mascot is based on round shape. It may set different levels of association by the resemblance with “O” letter for the word «oxygen» applied in the brand name, motion and active life and the circle of friends as well as in OrBeat logo. Bright warm orange color reflects not only the traditional vision of a fox coloring but also the idea of dynamic life, joy, and great mood. Moreover, the color has high visibility potential which strengthens the icon’s recognizability.

 

logo design tubik studio

 

SwitchUp

 

This is a branding sign for a music app SwitchUp with broad functionality on generating and sharing playlists. A logo features a wordmark and the form of a play button. This shape helps to set the link with the nature of the application. In addition, the keywords behind its branding are “bright”, “dynamic”, “fun” and “positive”, the reason why the triangle is an accurate choice. The thing is that triangle is an energetic and dynamic shape which is associated with motion and direction. The color palette supplements the brand image bringing the feeling of energy and freshness.

logo design music app tubik studio

 

Meditrack

 

The logo concept was designed for a medical app Meditrack used by doctors for planning and organizing the flow of appointments as well as tracking and saving health data for patients. It features the stylized track sign where straight lines go up and down similar to heart rating graph. The combination of blue, light blue and red colors is often associated with health care industry so creates a professional image for a brand.

meditrack_tubik_studio_icon_logo

 

The success of branding highly relates to a logo design. Considering the influence of colors and shape on human psychology, you can create compelling brand signs which set the connection with the target audience by transferring accurate messages and emotions.

 

animated logo design

 

Recommended reading

 

Knock Design Into Shape. Psychology of Shapes.

Color in Design: Influence on Users’ Actions.

Don’t Stay Still. Why Brand Needs an Animated Logo.

Psychology in Design. Principles Helping to Understand Users.

Logo Design: Creative Stages.

6 Creative Stages of Branding Design: Step-by-Step Guide.


If you want to know more about creative stages of the design process for logos, welcome to read our free e-book «Logo Design».

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strategies for ecommerce ui design

11 Profitable Strategies for E-Commerce UI Design

Ratings of e-commerce are booming and rocketing. People are getting more and more confident in buying things online. The report by BigCommerce on customers buying habits in 2016-2017 shows really interesting stats about online shopping:

 

  • 51% of Americans prefer to shop online
  • 96% of Americans with internet access have made an online purchase in their life, 80% in the past month alone
  • E-commerce is growing 23% year-over-year, yet 46% of American small businesses do not have a website
  • Online orders increase 8.9% in Q3 2016, but average order value (AOV) increased only 0.2% — indicating that transactional growth is outpacing total revenue.

 

The numbers above still haven’t stopped their increasing. That wouldn’t be reasonable for any business to ignore such global trends having a great impact on profits and reaching customers. For the last couple of years here in Tubik we see the obvious and logical growth of interest from big and small businesses in establishing their presence online via websites and/or mobile applications. Based on our experience and the research of the sphere, today we offer you the article telling a bit more about strategies and best practices in UI design for e-commerce.

 

So, let’s start with the 11 points which are important to consider when you are designing e-commerce user interfaces.

 

ux design for ecommerce tubik blog

 

1. Make the branding instantly visible

 

From the business perspective, branding is a crucial thing: it enables to provide a product, company or service with a recognizable face and personality.  In general terms, branding means a sort of image created via a set of distinguishing features and promoting awareness and recognizability of the product or service on the market.

 

Branding tends to be essential in an e-commerce user interface design, especially if stakeholders want to use the digital product as the additional flow of customer attraction. Moreover, identity integrated thoughtfully into the interface is the effective way to increase brand awareness. The time taken for proper market and user research, target audience definition, competition analysis and development of brand identity on the basis of all that data by a professional designer is a worthy investment. If that’s done before launching the process of UI design, the product gets higher chances of becoming recognizable faster and easier.

 

In this case, UI designer working on the interface, its color palette, shapes, types and fonts, illustrations and icons, will consider design solutions appropriate and corresponding to the general branding concept of the product that will make them mutually supporting each other. It provides more natural and harmonic feeling of the brand in general and the particular interface as an integral part of this brand.

 

There are numerous ways to add branding to the interface, still some layout zones and elements which have the highest potential in this issue:

 

Headers. In the article about website header design, we showed in detail that headers present the area of high visibility. So putting strategically important elements of branding in it is a good way to strengthen its memorability.

 

Splash screens. In mobile applications, splash screen or welcome screen is the first screen seen by a user while the application is loading and starting. It’s a good idea to use a logo, mascot or any other thing setting the instant visual connection with a brand. Moreover, adding a bit of wow-effect with slight stylish animation, it’s easy to make the sign even more attractive and memorable.

 

Preloaders and pull-to-refresh indicators. These are the elements which show the flow of the current loading process on the app or website. Branding applied elegantly in them can add much into the consistency of both UI and identity design.

 

MascotsMascots are images, usually personified, which often represent the brand, product or service identity and can be its symbolic convention in all the application or website. Mascots push the limits of personification and give the chance to create the unexpected combinations of elements or make fantastic and non-existing characters alive. A mascot becomes the element of identity and inter-connector between the user and the product. In many cases, it is the basic element of communication and interaction delivering the necessary message to the user.

 

jewellery ecommerce app UI

 

2. Set clear and easy navigation as the core task

 

In the article on UX design for ecommerce, we stated: whatever an amazing website or app is, whatever the stylish and trendy design and breathtaking images it features, its success will be measured not by the number of «wows». The efficiency is analyzed simply — by the number of complete purchases. If users don’t buy, design means nothing while stakeholders lose their money. Clear intuitive navigation plays the premier violin here. At every step of interaction, users need to understand clearly plenty of simple things, like:

  • what company or brand they are dealing with
  • what page they are at
  • where the menu is
  • how they can get back to home page or catalog
  • where the search and filters are
  • how long the page-loading process is going to take
  • how they can see the detailed information about the item
  • how they can choose between the option for the same item (color, size etc.)
  • how they can pay for the item
  • how they can save the items they would like to get back to later
  • how they can contact the seller
  • how they can see the rating and reviews of previous buyers etc.

 

gourmet_website_interactions_tubik

 

3. Check the scannability of the page or screen

 

As it was already mentioned, users don’t usually read and observe all the content on the page or screen from the starting point: instead, they start from quick scanning to understand if it contains something they need or want. Knowing the eye-tracking models, Gestalt principles and laws of visual hierarchy, designers and information architects can put the core data and interaction elements to the zones of high and natural visibility.

 

Calls to action (CTA), in particular, should be instantly seen in the first seconds on the page or screen. In the interfaces for e-commerce, CTA elements are the core factor of effective interaction with the product playing the crucial role in usability and navigability and therefore in getting profits. When all the path of interaction and transitions is built clearly for users but CTA element is not thought-out, placed or designed well, users can get confused and will need to take additional effort trying to achieve their goals. That increases the risk of poor conversion rate and general user experience.

 

4. Minimize user’s efforts whenever its possible

 

The respect to the customer lies not in pouring out your thanks. The real respect is in saving users’ time and effort day in and day out. Here are some design practices which can make the interface effort-saving:

 

Show related products. Seen on the item page as recommendations close to the features of this particular product can make the process of search and browsing much faster for users. However, it’s vital to check together with developers that this section really works according to the algorithm which shows suitable items, not random ones.

 

Strive for a minimal number of clicks. If going from page to page or jumping from screen to screen is not a part of the journey into the sales funnel, save every users’ click possible. Too many operations are tiring and annoying which is a kind of negative emotion. And emotions have a huge influence on user experience and make retaining users much harder.  Minimize the number of clicks on the way of choosing and buying whenever it’s possible — this way you respect user’s time better than politest words of thanks.

 

Simplify the sign-in process. Imagine the situation when you got to the amazing website selling the goods of your dream, and they are presented in such a stylish way that you want to buy them at once. But when you click the button «Buy», you are taken to the huge long from which you have to fill in to register on that website. That will cool down your hot wish to buy everything right here, right now, isn’t it? You change from the state «Take my money, give me that» to «Really? 20 points to fill in before I can buy?» in split seconds. Not all the users will survive that transformation and the website or app will lose a part of buyers. So, it’s necessary to make the sign-in/log-in process as simple as possible.

 

User shape and color marking to group the items or types of content. Color and shape codes enable designers to apply Gestalt principle of similarity not only on one screen or page but on the whole app or website. Color or shape markers simplify navigation and keep the consistency of design enabling users to remember the prompts and find the content they want easily. For e-commerce platforms which are usually full of numerous items, it can make the interface much more user-friendly.

 

Check that perception of the layout is natural and harmonic for the human eye. There are numerous things that have an impact on decision-making, and harmony is one of them. Eye-tensing color combinations, unreadable or not combining fonts, aggressive background, intrusive pop-ups or animations, annoying sounds or pages loading for ages — any point of that stuff can spoil the experience quickly and move users away.

 

Bakery website design case study tubik

 

5. Don’t go too far experimenting

 

There are many articles and videos calling creative people to hear their heart, trust their guts and think out-of-the-box. However, design is not just pure creativity striving to show all the power of original solutions. First of all, it the way to solve the problem and make users happier. So, it’s vital to look at the interface from user’s perspective and find the way to make interactions that will provide the smooth and easy way to conversion. In the article on home page design strategies we mentioned: the website is made not for creative contests or gallery of fame but for real users. The positive impact of habit in terms of user experience can be stronger than the wish of revolution. Surely, the dose of uniqueness is needed, but not so much to knock down the user. In e-commerce UI design, often aimed at quite a diverse target audience, too much of revolution might confuse and scare: do I really need to buy this thing, a user may think, if it’s so hard to get it? Study the interaction patterns and typical products for that particular target audience to make their habits their power. And don’t forget to check that all the icons on the screen don’t have a double meaning. Strive for the balance between innovation and traditions.

 

6. Use landing pages for specific purposes

 

For business aims and profits rate, this tip may bring crucial changes. E-commerce UI design principles are usually based on dealing complex websites or apps which are filled in with a variety of information. So, the approach of directing all the traffic from outer sources to the home page can be a step killing profitability and reducing conversion rates. Users might get overwhelmed, distracted or even annoyed with the amount of data they have to process finding what they need, especially if they are focused on a particular narrow goal presented in the source they come from. Using landing pages when you need to concentrate user’s attention on something specific can solve this problem efficiently. Landing page is focused on one item, to make it quickly found and reduce delays when target user seeks for specific operations, services or items. This is the issue of especially high importance in the case of e-commerce websites when unwise design solutions bring to poor user experience and financial losses.

 

web design UI tubik studio

 

7. Make the homepage informative

 

Home page can satisfy multiple functions: it’s a card of invitation, a starting point of the journey around the website, a storage of the vital links and data, and a strategic asset for marketing goals. In the majority of cases, it is the first visual and emotional touch to the website. Certainly, design is one of the core ways to make this touch gentle, smart and helpful. With all the progress the World Wide Web has witnessed, this position doesn’t change: home page often defines if a user goes further around the website, not only by beauty and style but first of all by information which is looked for. Making it accessible, noticeable and clear, designers grow the chances of positive user experience.

 

In general, home page can include the following data:

  • the nature of the website
  • brand or company identity elements
  • internal search
  • links to the core interaction zones
  • contact data and links to social networks
  • signs of trust (testimonials, reviews, big numbers of presence in social networks etc)
  • for e-commerce websites, it can be visual presentation of bestselling and/or exclusive items, for example, specific books, toys, clothing, equipment etc.

 

The solution which of the mentioned points are going to be included and how they are going to be spread on the layout should depend on the goals set for the website and the research of target audience.

 

bookshop website animation

 

8. Apply high-quality images giving the message

 

Images take a big part in usability: as the vast majority of users are visually driven, images become the hook points of getting basic data about the website or app. They present the part of the content which is both informative and emotionally appealing. The level of detail and functionality allow classifying the images in user interfaces into types, among which:

 

— photos: theme photos creating the appropriate mood and setting the message, demonstration photos, photos of the items, title photos for blog articles and pages of special offers etc.

— illustrations: custom illustrations in graphic interface design can look both informative and original allowing the design to stand out of the competition.

— hero banners: applied mostly in web design, they are big images which are usually the first visual element catching user’s attention in the initial seconds of interaction; they usually give the attractive visual presentation of the main content of the resource.

— icons: these are small but meaningful pictograms which are informative and support data exchange between the informer and addressee. Icons play the key role in providing clear and intuitive navigation, but they should be checked on proper clarity and the absence of double meanings.

— mascots: images, usually personified, representing the brand, product or service identity.

— visual identity elements: various visual signs of branding like logos, custom lettering for brand name and/or slogan etc.

florist shop website design

 

 

9. Think about promotional videos of different kinds

 

There are several common types of promotional videos:

 

  • introduction video (the first insights on the company, product, or brand showing its benefits for users)
  • product presentation videos (details about product’s features and advantages, special steps of interactions and the problem-solving potential of the product)
  • landing page videos (strengthening the message driving users to a particular call-to-action offered on the page)
  • video testimonials (the reasons and signs of trust and loyalty to the company, brand or product)
  • entertaining and educational videos (rising emotional appeal and often presenting the material for viral marketing).

 

All the mentioned types can serve efficiently for marketing goals and increase brand awareness. A creative and catchy video is a good way of attracting customers’ attention and the proven method of informing them quickly and brightly. A video activates several channels of perception — audio, visual, sound — simultaneously and usually do it in a way of telling a story. People are daily overloaded with tons of information of all kinds, so most of them aren’t ready to devote much time learning about products or services, especially the new ones. In these conditions, video can become the way of communication which is dynamic, informative and attractive. However, the technical side should be double-checked so that the video was integrated correctly and didn’t overload the page.

 

10. Let the user contact the duty holders from any point of interaction

 

The most popular placement for contact information is footer, the bottom part of the page. However, if any kind of contact data is core for conversion, it’s logical to put in the pre-scroll area or even a header. For example, on an e-commerce website, presents the online shop, users may want to call more frequently and this ability will have a direct impact on conversion rate. Anyway, the contact data should be available at any point users may need it. Among others, it is one of the factors influencing the level of trust to the website.

 

Contacts can be presented in various formats. They can reveal the data such as a phone number and location, emails, links to messengers, contact forms and instant chat window. Making the phone numbers clickable is supportive as many users now browse from their smartphones and may want to call right from there. The address can be also clickable opening the screenshot or map showing how to find the location. The solutions have to be based on thoughtful user research setting target audience’s expectations, level of tech literacy and ways of contact which are the most convenient for them. For instance, if your target audience is teenagers, just giving the phone number may be not effective as they really stick to messengers and social networks. At the same time, if your users are elderly people, social networks may not work in comparison to a phone number.

 

11. Add gamification

 

Gamification integrated into digital products is a great way to stimulate users’ extrinsic motivation, which is mostly a seek of reward, which can be tangible (money, prizes, diplomas, certificates, trophies, medals etc.) and intangible (praise, support, recognition etc.). So, challenges, leaderboards, rewards for loyalty and big orders, discounts, badges, coupons, stickers and all the other stuff of that kind can become great stimuli for users to not only start interaction with a website or app but also stay there and buy regularly.

 

badges illustration tubik studio

 

The offered e-commerce UI design examples and strategies, for sure, do not cover the whole scope of issues to consider in this fields. However, they can serve as a useful checklist or a source of UI design inspiration for those who aim at creating user-friendly platforms supporting business goals. No doubt, best UI design for e-commerce website is the one which leaves a buyer happy and brings profits to the stakeholders. 

 

Recommended reading

 

UX Design for E-Commerce: Principles and Strategies.

The Role of Branding in UI Design

Business-Oriented Design. Know Your Target.

Short but Vital. Key Abbreviations in Design for Business.

Business Terms in Design for E-Commerce. Sales Basics.

Two Types of User Motivation: Design to Satisfy.

Sell Like Hotcakes: UI Designs for E-Commerce.

Feel Homey. Handy Tips for Home Page Design.

Landing Page. Direct Flight to High Conversion.


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Welcome to read or download free e-books about Design for Business and Problem-Solving Web Design

ux_design_practices_article

Get Professional. Useful Habits for UX Designers.

To become a UX expert, designers need to work hard on the daily basis. Constant self-improvement and love to what you do are two key factors helping to become a master of your craft. Of course, all UX experts have their personal secrets of the success still they have something in common. There are certain characteristics which differ amateurs from the real professionals. The new article describes habits which expert UX designers possess.

 

They listen to users

 

The success of a product is defined by several points including the level of satisfaction which it brings to the users. To make a website or an application meet users needs, you have to know what exactly users require. So, before creating UX for a digital product, the professionals always go user researching.

 

The process of user research applies collecting and analyzing the information received from the potential users. The obtained outcome helps designers go deeper into details of the target audience as well as comprehend their preferences and psychological peculiarities. Applying user research UX experts actually can step into the users’ shoes and find the effective solutions for a user-friendly product. UX design built on empathy has the great chances to meet users needs and draw attention to a product.

 

usability testing

 

They conduct usability testing

 

Usability is one of the key factors influencing the quality of a digital product. So, to see if a website or an app is usable and to distinguish possible problems in UX, designers need to apply the technique of usability testing.

 

The level of usability is defined by five aspects: learnability, satisfaction, efficiency, memorability, and errors. Learnability stands for how easy users can attain tasks during the first usage and satisfaction is if the usage process feels pleasant. Efficiency is determined by users’ ability to accomplish a task quickly while memorability depends on time which people need to re-establish their proficiency after a period of not using a product. And finally, designers track the number of errors users make and how easily they can learn from these mistakes.

 

Usability testing is usually conducted at the UX building stage before a project goes to the development team. It allows changing inefficient solutions easier than in a complete product. Moreover, usability testing allows watching the users’ reactions while a product is used and estimate how much they like it or don’t. This technique is helpful for gathering the essential information for the effective user-centered design.

 

interface testing UI design tubik

 

They pay attention to the information architecture

 

In one of our previous articles, we defined the information architecture as a science which strives at organizing and structuring content so that users would easily adjust to the functionality of the product and could find everything they need without big effort.

 

Many UX experts learn the IA principles since they believe the information architecture is a foundation of the effective design. If the content is badly organized, users may have difficulties with navigation, so they can get lost and feel annoyed. That’s why even compelling content elements and powerful UI design can fail without appropriate IA.

 

Some may think that it’s impractical to devote much time to IA building but the effective information architecture is crucial for powerful user experience design. It helps users quickly navigate through content and find everything they need without striking a blow.

 

information architecture for designers

 

They strive for clarity

 

A quality digital product has to give a quick access to the features which users come for. The main objective for designers is to help people easily reach the desired functionality and make the process of usage pleasant and clear.

 

While planning problem-solving UX, professionals should work out which of design elements will be helpful and which of them will distract users. Unneeded functionality makes a product complicated and has the bad influence on the user experience. What’s more, it’s important to keep mental models which include common UI patterns for specific types of products. The thing is that design is often built on the elements which are already familiar to users. Such an approach makes navigation much more intuitive and simple.

 

tubik_photo_app

 

They consider real-life context

 

Being an idealist is not always a good thing, especially for UX masters. It may happen that some designers just forget to consider all the life factors which have the significant impact on UX.

 

A product is often built and tested in comfortable conditions, but people do not always have a chance to use apps in such pleasant environment. The modern world is too rush and people often have lots of tasks to do per minute. However, despite all the circumstances websites and mobile applications need to be enjoyable. Designers have to consider possible disturbances and create UX that way so people could manage everything even without being 100% engaged with a product, especially a mobile application.

 

home budget app case study

 

They are open to new tools

 

Being a profound user of Photoshop or Sketch is a great advantage for a professional still it’s always a good idea to try new tools. It may seem as time waste for some designers so they don’t see a point in it. However, you may be surprised how advanced the new technology can be and what functionality it provides. Learning new tools you’re are not obliged to apply them as the major instruments but you can use them as additional helpers which will be useful in certain situations.

 

They never stop learning

 

UX design is a field which never stays still. Each day brings new ideas and opportunities which designers willingly share around the world. Today there are so many techniques and methods which UX experts apply for creating quality products and it may be hard to keep up with all of them. Nevertheless, for a UX professional, it’s vital to learn as much as they can because this kind of knowledge only improves the professional skills.

 

In addition, designers shouldn’t concentrate only on the design aspects. Learning the wide spectrum of sciences which somehow relate to the design can be extremely helpful in the creative workflow. For example, it is recommended to learn psychology which helps to understand users and their needs as well as learn some basics of programming so that you could have the better vision of product development.

 

tubik-studio-free-ebook-on-design

 

They stay up to date

 

Digital technologies evolve pretty fast and UX experts have to follow the updates. It would be difficult to create the proper design without knowing the peculiarities of the devices it’s meant for. Moreover, the trends in design field are also changing quickly so UX designers need to know what’s on the top now and which solutions step aside.

 

They don’t forget to get inspired

 

Some people may think that UX design is a complex science with the strict rules which doesn’t have a room for creativity. However, it’s a false thought since UX masters never forget to let the imagination out of control. Many original and unique solutions are born due to designers’ open-mindedness and inspiration. That’s why designers always have to charge their creative power with the help of their favorite activities.

 

Book tubik design inspiration

 

To sum up, let’s remember Sean Covey’s words: “We become what we repeatedly do.” Work hard, improve yourself and you will be able to become a master in your field. Stay tuned!

 

Recommended reading

 

FAQ: Do UX Designers Need to Know Programming and Computer Science?

How Human Memory Works: Tips for UX Designers.

FAQ: Diversity of Design Job

6 Tips How to Apply Information Architecture in UX Design

7 Key Motives to Invest Time and Effort in UX for Digital Product

Gamification in UX. Increasing User Engagement.

User Research. Empathy Is the Best UX Policy.


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home page design article

Feel Homey. Handy Tips for Home Page Design.

There’s no place like home, they say. And in the growing world of websites for all the needs and aims, it actually works the same. Home page has multiple functions: it’s a card of invitation, a starting point of the journey around the website, a storage of the vital links and data, and a strategic asset for marketing goals. In the majority of cases, it is often the first visual and emotional touch to the website. No doubt, design is one of the core ways to make this touch gentle, smart and helpful. Today we are discussing some effective tips for creating user-friendly home pages.

 

One of our previous articles has already given the insights into the definition, types of content such a page usually includes and basic design strategies increasing home page usability. Continuing the topic, today we are adding more recommendations organized around three essential aspects: information, interaction, and appearance.

usability_interfaces_ux_design_tubik

 

Information

 

To use or not to use? That is the question. In the vast majority of cases, home page is the point of user’s decision. In the early 2000s guru of usability Jacob Nielsen mentioned in his article: «Your homepage is often your first — and possibly your last — chance to attract and retain each customer, rather like the front page of a newspaper.» With all the progress the World Wide Web has witnessed, this position doesn’t change: home page often defines if a user goes further around the website. And it is done not only by beauty and style but first of all by information which is looked for by visitors to the resource. Making it accessible, noticeable and clear, designers grow the chances of positive user experience.

 

In general, home page can include the following data:

  • the nature of the website: the page has to instantly inform users if it’s a company website, blog, e-commerce website, social network, educational platform or anything else;
  • brand or company identity elements: home page requires a recognizable visual presentation distinguishing the website from its competitors. If there is a product, company or brand behind it, webpage design should consistently reflect its identity. In other cases, the website itself should be seen as a brand and apply strategies of identity design for better brand awareness.
  • benefits of the website: it should quickly inform users why the website can be helpful or interesting for them.
  • internal search: many users come to the websites with clear goals, so functionality to search right from the homepage will make interaction highly productive
  • links to the core interaction zones
  • contact data and links to social networks
  • signs of trust: testimonials, reviews, big numbers of presence in social networks etc.

The solution which of the mentioned points are going to be included and how they are going to be spread on the layout should depend on the goals of the website and the research of target audience. Let’s check some tips effective in this aspect.

 

Fill the header with core data

 

As we mentioned in the article about web header design, it is the top part of the webpage, which people see before scrolling the page in the first seconds of introduction to the website. Headers can include a variety of meaningful layout elements, for example:

  • basic elements of brand identity: logo, slogan etc.
  • tagline setting the theme of the website
  • links to the core categories of website content
  • links to the most important social networks
  • basic contact information (telephone number, e-mail etc.)
  • a language switch in case of multilingual interface
  • search field
  • subscription field
  • links to interaction with the product such as trial version, downloading from the AppStore etc.

 

Obviously, it’s impossible to put all the list into one header. Moreover, it’s not a good idea to put everything because the header overloaded with diverse information will distract users’ attention. As Aarron Walter said in his book, «If everything yells for your viewer’s attention, nothing is heard». That is why the choice which information goes to the header and what it looks like arises on the solid ground of communication between a designer, a stakeholder and a marketing specialist. Header is the top zone of early interaction: eye-tracking studies show that the web page is mostly scanned starting from it. So decide, which elements are primary to achieve website goals and use the limited space of header for them. For example, on a news website or a big e-commerce platform search field is crucial for positive UX while on a small company website it may be not needed at all.

 

tubik_studio_structure

 

Apply informative tagline

 

Don’t think the users are going to wander around the website trying to set why it’s useful for them. Being surrounded by the thousands of websites, they may get away at the first seconds if they don’t see a clear reason to stay. So, give it to them — it’s the time for a tagline. In marketing terms, it is the name of a short and catchy phrase that summarizes the benefits or gives the description of the website. Including the keywords setting the proper theme and taking the place on the first level of visual hierarchy for the page, the tagline will quickly inform users why the website is worth their attention.

 

booking_service_ui_tubik

 

Enable users to contact with duty holders

 

Home page is usually the place where people expect to find the contact info any time they need it. The most popular placement for it is footer, the bottom part of the page. However, if any kind of contact data is core for conversion, it’s logical to put in the pre-scroll area or even a header. For example, if the website presents the delivery service or online shop, users may want to call more frequently and this ability will have a direct impact on conversion rate. Meanwhile, for an entertainment or news resource, it may be not that crucial so it’s placed in zones of less active interaction. However, in any case, the contact data should be available from home. Among other reasons, it is one of the factors influencing the level of trust to the website.

 

Contacts can be presented in various formats. They can reveal the data such as phone number and location, emails, links to messengers, contact forms and instant chat window. Making the phone numbers clickable is supportive as many users now browse from their smartphones and may want to call right from there. The address can be also clickable opening the screenshot or map showing how to find the location. The solutions have to be based on thoughful user research setting target audience’s expectations, level of tech literacy and the most convenient ways of contact for them. For instance, if your target audience is teenagers, just giving the phone number may be not effective as they really stick to messengers and social networks. At the same time, if your users are elderly people, social networks may not work in comparison to a phone number.

 

Make call-to-action element instantly visible

 

Unlike the landing pages, focused on narrow and concise goals, home page contents are quite diverse. That’s why it’s important for a UX designer to care how users will see what they really need to see in all that mass of data. No doubt, it cannot happen that all, let’s say, fifty available links on the home page are equally important. So, to make the page usable, all the interactive elements in the layout should be prioritized. Visually, it can be done via the rules of visual hierarchy so that users could see the key things first. And among them, call-to-action elements should be noticed instantly. Otherwise, there will be loss in conversion not because users didn’t want to do the action but because they didn’t find how to do it.

web design UI concept tubik studio

 

Interaction

 

The next aspect to consider is interaction — the way how users perceive, process and interact with the information they find on the home page as well as the website in general. The next set of tips is all about that.

 

Check scannability and mind eye-tracking models

 

It’s not a secret that users first scan pages and only then make a decision if they want to get dip into details. Interface designers are highly recommended to study eye-tracking models which are now described in numerous publications, with the most prominent contribution by Nielsen Norman Blog sharing the results of actual experiments in that sphere for a couple of decades. In brief, researchers mention three typical models of scanning: Gutenberg Diagram, Z-Pattern, And F-Pattern. In case you want to get more, we have given detailed descriptions in an earlier article, so now let’s just check them on schemes.

reading pattern

Guttenberg Pattern is quite typical for the web pages with the uniform presentation of information and weak visual hierarchy.

reading pattern zig-zag

Z-pattern and the presented zig-zag version is typical for pages with visually divided content blocks. 

 

f_reading_pattern_eyetracking

F-pattern natural for pages with massive presence of copy content

 

Scannability of web pages is enhanced with visual hierarchy that enables designers to show the content in terms of its priority and navigates user from the core zones to the secondary ones. Scannability is one of the parameters to be carefully tested all the time as it has a great impact on usability of the page and its problem-solving potential.

 

Remember that patterns are user’s friends

 

Every creative person feels the urge to apply the original and unique solutions and think out-of-the-box all the time. However, make not to go too far on that way. Remember that the website is made not for creative contests or gallery of fame but for real users. As we mentioned in the post about social networks design, the power of habit in terms of user experience can be stronger than the wish of revolution. Surely, the dose of wow-effect is needed, but not so much to knock down the user. On home page, too much of design revolution might confuse and scare: if the first page is so hard to understand, user thinks, what’s going to be next? Study the habits of interaction and typical products for that particular target audience to make their habits their power. Strive for the balance between innovation and traditions.

 

bookshop website animation

 

Make the search field easily accessible

 

As we said above, search means much, especially for the users coming to the resource with a clear understanding what they want. A/B testing can support the analysis of its most productive placement on the page layout. It can be a small search field, an icon in the header, a long horizontal field across the page as we have here in Tubik Blog. The main thing is to make it noticeable and clear so that users didn’t waste their time.

 

Use different menus and interaction zones

 

As home pages can provide a variety of links, tabs, fields and buttons, they should be grouped in different menus and zones instead of being given as the list of links. For example, double menu in the header can present two layers of navigation. We have shown the example of such a trick in the case study for a bakery website design. The website uses a sticky header which has two levels of navigation. The upper menu shows the links to social networks, the logo, search, shopping cart and hamburger button hiding the extended menu. The second line of navigation gives instant connection to the core interaction areas: products catalog, locations for the point-of-sales, news and special offers, information about the service and contact section. Visual and typographic hierarchy makes all the elements clear and easily scanned providing solid ground for quick interaction right from home page.

Bakery website design case study tubik

 

 

Make the home page accessible from any point of the website

 

Home is usually the foundation of the website structure. So, users need to have a chance to get back home from any page they are on. Check it when all the pages are designed not to miss this obvious still vital interaction.

 

Don’t direct all the outer traffic to home page

 

For simple one-page websites this question is not actual: indeed, they represent only a home page which satisfies one or multiple functions and there is no other place where the traffic could be directed from the outer sources. The same happens if the website is not complex, home is not overloaded with diverse links and navigation elements, so conversion can be reached right from it while other pages play secondary roles. In this case directing all the traffic to the most informative part of the site, which also enables a user to accomplish necessary action and get what they need, is a good idea.

 

However, for complex websites and platforms, especially if they satisfy multiple needs of broad target audience, this approach can be the step killing profitability and reducing conversion rates. The user can get scared, distracted or even annoyed with the amount of information they have to get through to find what they need, especially if focused on a particular narrow goal. Using landing pages in the case when you need to concentrate user’s attention on something specific can be the efficient way of solving this problem. Landing page is focused on one item, to make it quickly found and reduce delays when target user seeks for specific operations, services or items. This is the issue of especially high importance in the case of e-commerce websites when unwise design solutions bring to poor user experience and financial losses.

 

design agency landing page

 

Appearance

 

The third set of tips is concentrated on the page looks. No doubt, the recommendations are applicable for any kind of webpage, still, on home page, they tend to be more influential.

 

Be stringent in color choice

 

Color is power which can either strengthen or ruin other design decisions. Choosing the color palette, remember that colors influence user perception. Studying color psychology is helpful to make choices that transfer the right message. Attention to traditional color theory will help to find the color combinations that will look elegant and harmonic. One more popular issue is choosing between light or dark background: the solution is mostly based on the type of content website presents. Text-based websites usually use light and airy interfaces while visual-based ones can apply dark background to make the images look deeper and more stylish.

 

Apply recognizable visual prompts and associations

 

Being full of data, home pages usually include the variety of icons and illustrations. Choosing them, always test their recognizability and check if they build right associations. If there is the risk of double meaning or culture differences of target audience, supporting the icons or illustrations with a short copy might be helpful.

 

web design florist store ecommerce

 

Mind the typography issues and readability

 

Choice of fonts and their combination determine not only style but also readability of the home page. Even more, fonts, as well as colors, are also powerful in forming the mood of the page, from entertaining to business-like. So take your time to test various combinations and find the one which corresponds to the nature of the website as well as other design elements.

 

Strengthen the page with a prominent visual

 

Most users are visually driven and perceive messages given in images faster than words. That is why applying custom theme illustrations, high-quality photos or hero banners is a profitable step for a home page. The image of that kind will work as a quick hook catching users attention and transferring the necessary idea. However, overloading home page with images will make none of them effective.

 

financial_service_website_tubik

 

Think about motion and video

 

Another way to support interesting experience on home page is applying videos and animations. On the one hand, motion breathes life into the page, makes it more dynamic and lively, always draws attention. On the other hand, it can increase loading time. Moreover, too much animation annoys users. So, motion should be added in unobtrusive way and thoroughly check in terms of its effect on page functionality.

 

Test the loading speed

 

Whatever brilliant, stylish and breathtaking the page is designed, whatever cool and intuitive is navigation and information architecture — all those things won’t work if users have to wait while it’s loading. For the home page filled with various data, too long time of loading means losing the part of target audience. So, check the speed, optimize the images, make sure video and animation loads up correctly. Caring about this aspect, you respect your users’ time and effort and lay the ground for positive user experience.

 

tubik studio ice ui website

 

Obviously, not all the list of mentioned tips is actual for every single project: approaches can differ as well as audience and goals of the created websites. Yet, it may become a helpful checklist for web designers striving for home page usability.

 

Useful articles

 

Small Elements, Big Impact: Types and Functions of UI Icons.

Best Practices for Website Header Design

Home Sweet Home. Strategies of Home Page Design.

9 Effective Tips on Visual Hierarchy

Color Matters. 6 Tips on Choosing UI Colors.

Take It Easy: Tips for Effort-Saving User Interfaces.

8 Typography Tips For Designers: How to Make Fonts Speak.


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tips on visual hierarchy in design

9 Effective Tips on Visual Hierarchy

Sufficient visual hierarchy is a foundation of a successful digital product. It helps to organize UI elements in an effective way so that content would be easy to comprehend and pleasant to see. The presentation of visual elements has a great impact on user experience. If the components are organized wisely, users navigate and interact with a product without efforts and enjoy the process.

 

So, what makes powerful visual hierarchy? Of course, different kinds of products require different methods of building it still there are some common solutions helpful for UI content organization. Today’s article provides useful tips on creating the compelling visual hierarchy for web and mobile products.

 

Keep business goals in mind

 

There are often business goals standing behind a digital product. To achieve them, creative team needs to work out which UI elements are more important and prioritize them according to their roles. For example, all the elements on e-commerce websites perform the tasks of various levels. The item images are usually the main eye-catchers since they have to encourage customers to consider it. A heading goes after the image explaining what it is and the next important stage is a CTA button calling people to buy an item. By considering business and marketing goals set for the website or app, the creative team can effectively prioritize visual content and make a product stand out the crowd.

 

design agency landing page

Design Agency Landing Page

 

Consider scanning patterns

 

In our previous articles, we mentioned that before reading a web page people scan it to get a sense of whether they are interested. Different studies, including the ones by Nielsen Norman Group , have revealed several popular scanning patterns among which “F” and “Z”-shaped.

 

F-pattern appears mainly on digital pages or screens with the big amount of content such as blogs, news platforms etc. Users’ eyes move in F-shape: first, they scan a horizontal line on the top of the screen, then move down the page a bit and read across the shorter horizontal line, finishing with the vertical line down on the left side of the copy where people look for keywords in the paragraphs’ initial sentences.

 

Z-shaped pattern takes place on the pages which are not so heavily concentrated on copy or those which don’t require scrolling down. The pattern is the following: people first scan across the head of the page starting from the top left corner, searching for core information, and then go down to the opposite corner at a diagonal, finishing with the horizontal line at the bottom of the page from its left to right.

 

Knowing these patterns designers organize content putting all the core UI elements on the most scanned spots to draw users’ attention.

 

Functionality first

 

The visual hierarchy may seem to be oriented only to the aesthetic aspects but it’s not like that. First of all, by structuring and organizing visual elements designers need to make sure a product is clear to use and the navigation works right. The visual hierarchy which is built exceptionally on aesthetics can’t work effectively. User interface with the badly structured content leads to the bad UX. So, while building visual hierarchy designers need to consider functions of UI elements and a role they play in the navigation process.

 

landing page UI design tubik studio

Seafood Recipes Landing Page

 

White space is a visual element

 

White space, or negative space, is not just an area between design elements, it is actually a core component of each visual composition. It is a tool able to make all the user interface elements noticeable to users’ eyes. Designers can group or separate UI components so that they could create the effective layout. Moreover, negative space helps to emphasize particular elements which require deep attention from users. White space is an effective instrument for creating visual hierarchy so designers need to work on its balanced usage.

 

landing page web design

Colony Landing Page

 

Apply the golden ratio

 

We devoted one of our latest articles to the golden ratio applied in design. It is a mathematical proportion of the elements of different sizes which is thought to be the most aesthetically pleasing for human eyes. The proportion equals 1:1.618 and it is often illustrated with seashell-shaped spirals which many of you could have probably seen.

 

Designers often apply golden ratio at the stage of wireframing. It helps to plan a structure for the layout placing and sizing user interface elements in the right proportion which will be pleasant for users.

 

golden ratio in ui design

Tracking Widget

 

Use a grid

 

A grid is one of the key tools applied at the different stages of the creative process and visual hierarchy is not an exception. A grid helps to structure all the components and put them into the appropriate sizes and proportion. What’s more, designers can effectively work with the negative space since a grid shows if the elements are placed proportionally and even.

 

Add some colors

 

Color choice and combinations are essential for visual hierarchy as they help users to distinguish the core elements. The thing is that colors have their own hierarchy which is defined by the power of influence on users’ mind. There are bold colors such as red and orange as well as the weak ones like white and cream. Bold colors are easy to notice so designers often use them as the means of highlighting or setting contrast.

 

Moreover, applying one color to the several elements you can show that they are somehow connected. For example, you can choose a red color for purchase buttons so that people could intuitively find them when they need.

 

financial_service_website_tubik

Financial Service Website

 

Pay attention to the fonts

 

Visual hierarchy includes a core subsection called typographic hierarchy which aims at modifying and combining fonts to build the contrast between the most meaningful and prominent copy elements which should be noticed first and ordinary text information. The fonts can be transformed by regulating sizes, colors, and families as well as their alignment. Different fonts can divide copy content into different levels so that users could perceive the information gradually. However, designers are recommended to keep the number of fonts within three since too many fonts look messy and make the design inconsistent.

 

Three levels for web, two for mobile

 

As we mentioned above, different fonts form typographic levels which consist of such elements as headlines, subheaders, body copy, call-to-action elements, and captions. There are three typographic levels: primary, secondary, and tertiary. The first one includes the biggest type and aims at drawing people’s attention to the core information on the screen. The next level provides copy elements which are easily scanned and help users navigate through the content. The tertiary level usually applies body text and some additional data which is presented via relatively small type.

 

In many cases, web products include all three levels since they are more likely to provide the big amount of content. On the other hand, designers are recommended to keep the number of layers within two while creating typography for mobile. The small screens don’t provide enough space for three levels so the elements of a secondary level such as subheaders have to step aside to make mobile UI look clean.

 

UI animation wine app

WineYard App

 

Effective visual hierarchy is not only about aesthetics. It aims at providing problem-solving navigation and interaction systems as well as friendly user experience. To create a sufficient visual hierarchy, designers need to organize all UI elements considering the functionality and business goals.

 

Useful articles

 

The topic of visual hierarchy is wide and complex, so we gathered some helpful articles revealing various aspects.

 

Visual Hierarchy: Effective UI Content Organization.

Golden Ratio. Bring Balance in UI Design.

Take It Easy: Tips for Effort-Saving User Interfaces.

Tips on Applying Copy Content in User Interfaces

Information Architecture. Basics for Designers.

Typography in UI: Guide for Beginners.

 


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psychology of shapes in design tubik article

Knock Design into Shape. Psychology of Shapes.

The success of any visual composition highly relates to how people perceive it. There are many factors influencing human perception and the significant part goes to psychology. In one of our articles, we’ve already discussed the role of psychological principles in design and described how useful they can be on the way to understanding users.

 

The aspect which we want to cover in today’s article is called the psychology of shapes. Let’s see what this direction studies and how it can help designers in the creative process.

 

Psychology of shapes

 

All the visual objects can be analyzed in terms of shape. For example, an average house may be perceived as a rectangle with a triangle on the top and the sun is often presented like a circle with lines around it. People may not always notice what figures and shapes surround them still they have a great impact on our consciousness and behavior. The science studying the influence of shapes on people is known as the psychology of shapes.

 

The study claims that each shape has its own meaning and influences our mind and reactions differently. There are many psychological tests which are used to define the personality or mental condition via shapes. For example, a favorite figure can tell about person’s character traits, a quickly chosen shape can show what’s on the mind.

 

Many years of research and tests have helped professionals to define what meaning each shape typically brings and how it can influence human perception. Let’s take a closer look.

 

animated tutorial

Social network tutorial animation

 

Geometric shapes meaning

 

Hearing the word shape most people think about geometric figures first. There are plenty of geometric shapes which people see daily including squares, circles, rectangles and others. But what do they mean? Let’s see.

 

Squares and Rectangles

 

These two shapes are thought to be the most commonly used. We see them many and many times per a day. The walls and furniture, books or monitors, cell phones and cameras as well as many other everyday things have square or rectangular shape. Straight lines and right angles of these two shapes give a sense of reliability and security. People strongly associate squares and rectangles with buildings the reason why they bring the feeling of trust and authority.

 

Common meanings:

  • discipline
  • strength
  • courage
  • security
  • reliability

 

tubik_photo_app

Photo App

 

Triangles

Triangle is an energetic and dynamic shape which is always associated with motion and direction. The lines are placed that way so our eyes automatically move to the top of a triangle or in the direction it is placed. Triangles can have different meanings. An upright triangle brings the feelings of stability and balance but the reversed one looks risky and ready to fall giving people a sense of tense.

 

Common meanings:

  • excitement
  • risk
  • danger
  • balance
  • stability

 

Circles, ovals, and ellipses

 

The first and foremost meaning of this shape is the eternity since they have no beginning or end. The circle has a long association with the sun and Earth as well as other cosmic objects while ellipse is similar to the whole universe. That’s why round shapes may give the feeling of magic and mystery. In addition, unlike the previous shapes circles don’t have angles so it makes them softer and milder.

 

Common meanings:

  • eternity
  • female
  • universe
  • magic
  • mystery

 

tubik_art_courses_app

Art Courses App

 

Spirals

 

These shapes can be often seen in nature, for example, shells and some flowers, the reason why it’s often associated with the circle of life and growth. Also, in some cultures, spirals may represent the knowledge or information. In modern society, they are seen as a sign of creativity and a fresh mind.

 

Common meanings:

  • growth
  • creativity
  • calmness
  • intelligence

 

Big City Guide Madrid tubik

Big City Guide

 

Natural shapes meaning

 

All the things created by mother nature have their unique shape. Leaves, flowers, trees, animals, and many other representatives of flora and fauna become the source of inspiration for artists and designers. Natural shapes have clear meanings of the plants and animals which they symbolize. They often bring the feeling of refreshment and unity with the natural environment. In addition, animals and plants can also have their own characteristics and symbols. For example, a rose is a flower of love and passion, while a lion is a symbol of pride and bravery but this is another topic to discuss.

 

Common meanings:

  • originality
  • organic
  • balance
  • refreshment

 

andre landscape tubik studio logo design

Andre landscape logo option

 

Abstract shapes meaning

 

They are usually visual symbols of abstract ideas or simplified versions of natural shapes. Some abstract shapes can be too difficult to recognize because they are stylized and only small details give a hint to what it is. One abstract shape often has both direct and figurative meanings.It is often used in graphic design, especially for logos and icons. Abstract shapes are an effective way to transfer a message quickly without text.

 

Common meanings:

  • the duality of meaning
  • uniqueness
  • elaborate.

 

wedding_theme_website_ui_design_tubik

Wedding theme

 

How designers use psychology of shapes

 

Shapes are essential elements in all design directions. They can serve as components of a visual composition as well as a content organizing tool which divides or connects design elements into groups. To make the sophisticated design, experts need to consider the meaning of shapes and the impact which they have on users’ mind.

 

Graphic designers often deal with small but meaningful elements such as logo and icons. A powerful logo needs to convey the right message which would serve as the brand voice. If the shapes are chosen appropriately for a logo, they will assist to convey the right mood without additional words. For example, in case of a logo for a financial company, one of the approaches can be applying to apply the shapes which convey the feeling of trust and balance such as square or triangle.

 

Various shapes are often found in user interfaces of digital products. They can be used as buttons or icons as well as applied to organize the content on the layout. For instance, text blocks are often gathered in a rectangular or square shape which allows users to quickly scan copy. Using different shapes designers can create effective information architecture for a product. The elements of the layout may be structured in certain shapes so that make users’ eyes easily find core information. For example, if we place the content in a triangular shape placing the vital component on its top, people’ eyes will automatically go to the peak.

web design UI concept tubik studio

The Big Landscape

 

Psychology of shapes plays a big role in typography. There is a great number of typefaces and all of them have their individual impact on visual perception. Some kinds apply round shapes as a dominant and they seem more feminine and mild unlike those with straight lines and sharp angles which are more formal and sometimes aggressive. That’s why it’s important to pay attention what shapes are dominant in a chosen font to avoid a conflict between the context and visual presentation.

 

The human mind is full of secrets and it’s often hard to predict possible reactions. However, the science of psychology helps designers be prepared and comprehend how our brain works, at least at some basic level. Knowing psychology of shapes designers are able to create proficient logos along with problem-solving user interfaces for web and mobile products.

 

Recommended reading

 

Color in Design: Influence on Users’ Actions.

Psychology in Design. Principles Helping to Understand Users.


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