Black Vs White: the ultimate debate when it comes to User Interface design. Scroll down for the results!
We recently asked you what makes a User Interface great for you. First off, we’d like to say a big thank you to all of you who participated and gave your feedback! You’re all awesome 🙂
Our responses came from a wide variety of web and design professionals including UI designers, UX designers, UI/UX designers, Graphic Designers, Solution Architects, Web Developers and Engineers, Growth Hackers, Consultants, Analysts, Web Project Managers and UX Experts.
So now that the results are in, let’s take a look at the responses and what this means for UI trends this coming year.
What’s the most important aspect of a UI?
- Intuitive design: 48%
- Clarity: 24%
- Consistency: 16%
- Aesthetically pleasing design: 8%
- Responsive design: 4%
What about color?
At work, 49% of you preferred a black UI, 37% preferred a white UI, 8% opted for other colors, and 6% didn’t have a preference.
Outside of the office, 32% of you preferred a black UI, another 32% preferred a white UI, 16% opted for other colors, another 16% didn’t have a preference, and 4% of you opted for a UI where you could customize the color yourself.
Rethinking User Interface design
User Interface designers are an integral part of the design process and help to make decisions that affect how the product should look, how it should feel, what the components are, where the components should be and how the users should interact with the user interface. Web design aesthetics tend to follow trends just like in fashion: one concept is cool for a while, then it’s not, and then it is again—the shift backward usually takes place after a long-ish period of time. It’s exciting, innovating times we’re living in! But with so much shifting and switching, how do designers get it right? Let’s take a deeper look into what we’ve learned from our fellow Justinminders about UI design.
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Driving intuitive design
Well, firstly, we know – and can confirm from our survey – that intuitive design is a must. A big part of what good web designers do is to understand human behavior and come up with solutions to adhere to that behavior online. Something feels intuitive when the user’s knowledge is sufficient to be able to perform a task and have the outcome be as expected and enjoyed. When it comes to a product, website or application that we have been using for a while – simple or complicated – it will probably feel intuitive because we know exactly what to do with it. However, a new product can feel very un-intuitive if we don’t have any prior knowledge of how to use it, regardless of it’s complexity. In this respect, UX and UI designers need to be working with the end in mind: the need to prompt visceral reactions in the user.
App inspired web design
And secondly, black and white comes first. This isn’t a surprise to us. In fact, we recently wrote to you about the importance of whitespace in interactive design. In the past few years, we’ve shifted our interest from desktop to mobile devices and this has forced UI designers to rethink their focus, with a new emphasis on color. These days, we expect the compatibility of our websites and apps to reach across our multitude of screens and devices—and this is simply going to continue into 2016. In response to this, UX and UI designers need to be thinking ‘mobile-first’. They need to consider how pages and interactions work on a phone or tablet before imagining them on desktop. Although this way round sounds more complicated, perhaps it doesn’t have to be. Maybe the ‘constraint’ of having to think small before you can think big is a good thing—you know, all that walk before you can run talk? Well let’s put it into action.
Design first, color later
Here’s some advice about making design constraints work for you: design black and white first. The most important thing to consider – after making sure your content is awesome, of course – is making your app or web UI beautiful, thoughtful and usable. So, why not start without color? After all, they say that color is the most complicated area of visual design, and we’re not disputing that. By adding color at the latest or later stages of the design process, you’re more likely to use it with purpose and have a better understanding of what colors make sense. Be able to justify the use of color in your work. Remember, it may be simpler and more effective to go with just one color.
So what’s game for 2016? In 2015, we saw flat design grow up and material design on the rise. Simplifying dimension, minimizing design elements, and maximizing white space was just so in. This year, our bet is that it’s only going to continue! We also predict that design is going to be all about the user: user experience will absolutely be the new black. Ultimately, designs will need to be usable and engaging, regardless of how cool they look. So UI and UX designers listen up! Remove any and all unnecessary information and let the user interact with your designs as intuitively as they can.