How to use prototypes to solve design problems
Avoid wasting time in the design process by prototyping solutions and validating them with Justinmind prototyping tool!
UX, UI and web designers are jumping on the prototyping band wagon because they know that it’s fast becoming an essential tool for identifying problems, building solutions and improving the user experience of our products and services.
Creating a successful website or mobile application is not limited to designing attractive landing pages, or building a responsive design website: it requires identifying the problem and visualizing and defining the solution. We all know the feeling of investing too much time in tackling a problem, and understand the frustration of making unnecessary mistakes. Let’s see how prototyping solutions can help us to translate our ideas into meaningful solutions to improve UX.
Prototyping solutions: put the user first
So, you’ve defined all the content on your site and where to find it, because you sketched out the user flow. But does that mean a new user will be able to navigate your site just as easily? As always, your design should be user-centered, i.e. centered around the user. Each design decision should be determined by the needs of the end-users, and then revised through re-building, testing and learning.
Remember that not everyone will have landed on your website from the homepage, and it’s important to explain to them what your site is about, and what to do when they get there. Prototyping solutions will encourage you to validate your design assumptions. It will make you consider fundamental questions like:
- how could this system work?
- how could the user interact with this interface?
Prototyping solutions: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
So you’ve got a unique approach to UI navigation. Perhaps it’ll be a breakthrough UI pattern, or maybe it’ll be another failed attempt at fixing what already works. There’s a reason that most of today’s sites follow the same navigation flow and one of just a few UI patterns. In order to build sites and apps that are enjoyable and usable, we need to make sure that the user is familiar with our design choices. Standards exist for a reason.
Prototyping solutions can benefit your design process from as early on as definition. Sketching out – or using Justinmind’s Sketching UI kit– is a great way to wrap your head around the initial plans. But don’t spend too long on that! Make sure you work the interaction into your designs early enough for to give your clients and users a life-like replica to test it out before coding.
Download Justinmind now to start prototyping solutions
Avoid blind spots by testing your prototypes
So you’ve been think about the UI aesthetics and think you’ve got a real winner on your hands. Don’t be too sure about that! Sometimes we designers become so attached to our designs that we’re convinced that they’re on the right path: this kind of thinking happens more often than it should. But innovation doesn’t happen like this.
Prototyping solutions throughout the project cycle can help you solve design problems. Testing at the prototyping phase can uncover some of the Dos and Don’ts at the early stages of the design process, and help you iron out the kinks.
As you design, think about the what the user needs in order to get around your site or app. Constantly testing and innovating (‘release early, release often’) give you that all-important information about your users. Being able to test your website or mobile app with a prototype before coding means that you can save time as well as properly understand the audience you’re targeting. Justinmind has a wide selection of integrations with usability testing tools that make it easy to perform user research, without switching tools.
Prototyping solutions for effective collaboration
In any design project, collaboration is fundamental to boosting productivity and efficiency. Prototyping can be an excellent way for teams to collaborate. It is a design technique that brings people together and encourages them to discuss the problem and come up with possible solutions.
Collaborative prototyping helps designers create features that the user will love. It gets everyone – including the user – involved in the design process, and helps to increase communication between the teams working on the product.
Choose a tool that allows you to customize and personalize your designs, whilst creating a unified team at the same time. With Justinmind, you can create custom UI assets and really get creative, as well as bring the whole team together on one collaborative platform.
Prototyping solutions: the takeaway
User experience is important to your design and your team. That’s why you need to start prototyping solutions. Download Justinmind today and check out all the tools you need to identify your project’s problems, define solutions and improve user experience in one comprehensive prototyping platform.