A Complete Guide to Design Wireframes for a Mobile App
App development is not a phenomenon it’s a process, so it includes various stages and requires at least 3-8 months to get completed. It means, the developers have to focus on many things. Wireframe development helps the developers and app stakeholders as well that is you must know how to create Wireframe for mobile apps.
From the first button of the app to the entire look and flow, a wireframe designer sketches everything. Many designers use blank paper and pen for wireframe drawing, while many use laptops and other devices. When you hire a mobile app development company, the professionals create a wireframe of your app and discuss it with you.
It helps to eliminate the flaws at the first and work on improvement of features and functions.
Often, people confuse between wireframe and prototype because they both are built before the development work begins. Let’s know the difference to understand wire-framing better.
What Is the Difference Between Wireframe and Prototype?
A wireframe is a basic layout of fundamental design elements of the app. Whereas, the prototype comes after the wireframe is completed. It has GUI designs, features, and functions, like a real app.
The prototype focuses on the look, structure, and functions of the app, while the wireframe is designed to understand the core architecture of the app. Moreover, Wireframe is like a Skeleton and the prototype includes more visuals and interactions.
But, you should not jump directly from Wireframe to Prototype, create Mockup. It comes before prototyping the app. Have a look at the image below to understand better.
Why Create Wireframe for Mobile App?
Many developers skip wire-framing of an app! Yes, it is optional, but skipping the wire-framing can lead to confusion and even increase the time of development. It is because you can make several mistakes due to not designing a wireframe. So, let’s move ahead and know why you should go for the app development wireframe.
A wireframe is a blueprint of the app, so, it includes the core things. So, a developer can know how to write code for a basic design. Skipping Wire-framing leads to confusion and mistakes, consequently, making use of several sources. Moreover, eliminating the mistakes requires more effort and time.
2. Visual Clarity
How the app will look, you can know about it through Wire-framing. The UX designers can know about their aims clearly. They can know the navigation, organization of pages, and most importantly user’s flow on the app. Visual clarity helps designers and developers as well that is why companies prefer mobile app wire-framing.
3. Low Mistakes
You have to layout the functionality of each screen with Wireframe. So, you know what features and functions come first and next. Moreover, you know the user’s flow, which helps to design the wireframe accordingly. So, you know how to prioritize the content and this reduces the chances of mistakes.
Once the app is completed, it is difficult to make changes to it, because a long process is followed. But, if you make corrections in the Wireframe, the chances of mistakes reduce. Since you design the wireframe with a pencil, you can erase and improve. Likewise, you can do the same with tools.
There are many benefits of creating a mobile application wireframe. Now move ahead to know how to make an app wireframe.
Also Read: How to create an app from scratch?
Steps for Mobile App Wire-framing
Before you begin to make a wireframe, understand its types. In general, Wireframe is of three types Low-fidelity, mid-fidelity, and high-fidelity. First, developers begin with low fidelity and move on accordingly. Have a look at the images below.
As you go to the more visual and interactive designs, you use high-fidelity wireframe. Let’s read the steps to know how to create a wireframe for an app.
Things to Focus on Before Start Creating a Wireframe
1. Research & Analyze
Research about the type of apps that are trending and who are users of them. Analyze, existing similar apps and their functions. By doing so, you can understand what types of app visitors like to use more. Research about the features, functions, and technologies for app development.
2. Understand the Types of Wireframe
You have to understand the types of the wireframe to design it flawlessly. You have to carve out each section and make content structure in the low-fidelity wireframe. Likewise, make designs for further content. So understanding the types will help you to move smoothly.
3. Check some examples
To understand how to create wireframe for mobile app, you should check some examples of wireframes. It will give you an overall idea of the wireframe. You can take the help of tutorials as well for better understanding.
4. Understand the Purpose of Each Page
You have to connect the different pages in the wireframe. You can do this impeccably if you know the purpose of each page. So, whenever you are creating a design for a page, find the reason why the user will come on this page.
5. Imagine the User Flow
A perfect Wireframe is possible if you imagine or visualize the user flow on the app. By doing so, you can understand what and how to design first, second, or on further pages. You can imagine the user flow when you know the intention of the user. For example, if the user is new, he can create an account or if already registered he can search for products and services. Let’s understand the user flow by looking at the image below.
Steps to Create a Wireframe
1. Set a Mobile Frame
Selecting a mobile frame stops you from adding too many things to the app. Moreover, helps you to put every button or feature in the right place and in the right size. It is better to select a mobile frame than to draw any simple rectangle shape. Let’s have a look at the image below for a clearer idea.
2. Sketch the Core Part
Now start sketching the core part of the app. It includes the layout of all the features and styles on the app. You should first make the layout on the blank page and then draw it digitally. This is how you can save time. A lot of businesses hire wireframe designers for flawless app design and to attract more visitors to make money out of the app.
3. Decide on Layout Boxes
You have to create a visual hierarchy in which you need to set the layout and structure. At this point don’t focus on content, just think about the presentation. Many development firms provide mobile app development services to people who can’t create the Wireframes for their apps effectively. Check out the image below to know how boxes are presented.
4. Prepare An Actual Copy
How the Wireframe will look like or the complete look, prepare a copy of it. Once you are satisfied with the visual hierarchy, replace placeholders and dummy text with the real text. Create this copy of the actual app idea. When you start to put the real content, you will realize some UIs are unnecessary.
5. Connect the Pages
Connect the pages for UX design flows. The team of developers can understand the interaction and connections among the pages and work on them effectively. You can give each screen a reference number because it turns out to be a great help when discussing the Wireframe with the team and stakeholders. Take an example of the registration process below.
6. Check Content Scalability
When you create wireframe for mobile app make sure the designs scale property on different sizes of mobile phones. Different screen size users will have the same great user experience while using your app.
7. Review & Update
Discuss your wireframe of the app with the stakeholder and team. Get the reviews, bad and good feedback, and work on them. It will reduce the leftover mistakes in design and you can come out with an impeccable Wireframe. Now you know how to create app wireframe, so you can come up with flawless designs. But there are still a few things that you should focus on. Let’s know them below.
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5 Small But Important Things to Keep in Mind While Creating Wireframe
Many times you forget to focus on some points while creating a wireframe for an app. These points seem small but are vital to creating a proper wireframe. Know about them in the space below.
1. Refine the Content Structure
You should have a clear idea of what your stakeholders want. Discuss the content with them effectively and note down all the points. It will help you refine the content structure. You should ask the below questions yourself to refine the content structure better.
- Does this structure achieve the purpose of the page?
- What actions user can take from here?
- What questions can come to the user’s mind?
2. Keep User Flow in the Mind
How will the user navigate the app? You must have a clear thought that in which ways the user can go on the app from a particular stage. It helps to understand the user flow. Analyze all the possibilities for the user to move from one page to another.
3. Keep It Simple
What is the purpose of creating a Wireframe? The designer, developer, and stakeholder can understand the architecture, flow, and core functionalities of the app with the help of Wireframe. If you will not keep the design, structure, and content of the Wireframe simple, it can lead to miscommunication or create difficulty while understanding the Wireframe.
4. Ask Questions
Many problems arise while creating a Wireframe, so don’t hesitate to ask questions and have the patience to search for the solutions. This attitude can help you come up with a clear understanding and eventually an impeccable Wireframe.
5. Work on Feedback
It is possible that you can make mistakes while creating Wireframe that your eyes can miss out on. But when you test it and ask for feedback, you can see the mistakes. So, focus on the feedback to improve the Wireframe.
Tools to Create Wireframe for a Mobile App
Although Wireframe is not a lengthy process, it can be if you don’t focus on minute details. Otherwise, this is a 4-7 weeks process. There are some tools to help you out and make the process of creating a Wireframe easy for you.
- Adobe XD
- Justin Mind
Let’s read about each tool in the detail below.
You can call it an all-purpose tool because it has numerous features and functionalities. If you don’t know how to create wireframe for mobile app, start with this tool because it offers everything a beginner requires. You can easily design, prototype, and collaborate using Adobe XD. Moreover, you can use, tooling, chat, and API for native integration. You can make the designs more attractive with interactions, motions, and animations.
You can use Figma if you want to save time. The tool offers a responsive auto layout. Various plugins in the tool eliminate repetitive tasks. Automating the work helps the designers focus on improvement. Moreover, multiple users can work on a project at the same time and this is possible due to real-time collaboration offerings.
It is a vector design tool for macOS users. You can create modern UI and icon vector design with the Sketch tool. Likewise, the vector design shapes and artboards help the developers make designs quickly and effectively. But this is a desktop-based tool so collaboration is a bit difficult here.
Balsamiq is an Easy-to-Use tool because it has a drag and drop functionality. You can use sketch mode for brainstorming and clean wireframe mode for presentation. Moreover, you can easily switch between them. If you are worried about how to create wireframes, use this easy tool. And you can check the tool with a 30-day free trial. If you like it, you can subscribe to it for further projects.
An InVision is an amazing tool because it allows you to create the wireframe on a whiteboard, where everyone can contribute. So, if you want to allow people to make changes in your wireframe, this can be the right option. Moreover, you can share the result with the team and write comments.
It is an all-in-one tool for creating high-fidelity wireframes and prototypes of apps. Justinmind provides good support in gesture operations, transition, and interactive effects. You will not have to use code to create interactive wireframes with the help of animations. Many developers use this tool to make Wireframe for app design.
It is a simple and straightforward tool to create Wireframe for mobile apps. It offers functions like a color palette, built-in templates, and drag-and-drop elements. Although it has limited features and a minimalistic user interface, it helps to make the designing process easy yet fast. Likewise, offers different sharing options.
Wireframe helps to know about the design, look, and flow of the user on the app. It is an integral part of any app development that helps developers, designers, and stakeholders. If you are also planning for an app, contact the top mobile app development firm Technource. We sign NDA, make wireframe, prototype, and provide you with post-launch support.
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