When it comes to a good mobile app, its UI is considered to be the most important aspect that gives boost to its performance closely followed by the user experience it provides to the end customer. But, one thing that is often overlooked here is the fact that a person who is going to a play store to download an app often judges its performance by its first appearance, thus it becomes important for developers to make their apps look good to make them stand out among the pool of apps flooding the crowded marketplaces.
Winning over your customers only through a great UI is easier said than done and here comes the role of animation to make your app worthy enough to download. But, here as well, developers often mistook animations with just fillers and end up using the same at places where they become irritating and noisy for the user thus sabotaging your whole user experience module.
App animations, when used smartly can not only help in reducing the cognitive load of the app, but can also attract users attention and also provide them free flowing experience.
So, if you are an app developer and not sure where to use animations appropriately, than this article is sure to help you in understanding the best practices you can use for animation in your mobile apps.
Animated Launch Screens
The 21st century user whose life is circled around fast paced internet expects its app to load instantly, but the complexity of the mobile app development usually fails to meet this expectation. Using animations at the time of loading can help in distracting users from the loading time, thus making the same appear shorter for the user. There are plethora of ways in which an app developer can use animations for launch screens like:
a.) Make an animated logo which will appear on the launch screen to grab the attention of the user.
b.) Make your launch screen a perfect red carpet to give a glimpse of your animation expertise.
c.) Tie animation with the theme of your app and use the same on the launch screen as a part of your branding campaign. Use innovative themes to create exciting animations while your app is loading smoothly.
Animation For The Login Screen
Most of the apps these days ask their users to log in before they actually start using the app. This, login page is an awesome platform for an app developer for using illustrations that will make your login screen lively. This will also maintain the curiosity of your users who might not be that interested in login at the first place.
A time lap animation is one of the most used and appreciated ways to use animation on the login screen. The space inspired concepts are also catching up among the app developers as they keep the users engage while the app verifies the data entered by the user for login.
At last, why not make your password error pop up animated too, for sure adding a wrong password would have not been funnier for the user ever.
Onboarding Screen Animation
Only a true software developer can understand the importance of the onboarding screen of the app. This is the first place where your user becomes familiar with the functioning and purpose of your app. That screen is the biggest risk factor of whether the customer will stay or abandon the app in the middle if they fail to find it user friendly enough to operate.
Static slides and dropdowns are a common practice people using these days on onboard screens, thus using animation here can be a game changer for you. Let your user walk through the app experience using animations, show them app progress and activity and they are sure going to enjoy it.
Agreed that app users are highly impatient and hardly pay any heed to all the effort that you might have put in on the onboarding screens; but as a developer it is your responsibility to make the wait worth every second with the graphic animations covering every single element of your app.
The animated activity indicators that you will use are sure to grab attention of the user, but you need to make them swift and indeterminate so that it won’t take more than two to three seconds of your user.
But, if you want to have more distinctive app indicators than they must be crazy and intuitive enough to catch hold of your audience for not more than 10 seconds, anything beyond that is bound to make the user abandon your app then and there.
A spinning wheel and arrow board and a piped structure are surely the most progressive indicators used by app developers these days, but you can play around with the obsession of your user as well. Like, if you are developing a food app then in all probability a food lover will be your prime target, than why not use this as an animation for food delivery indicator, restaurant finder indicator, etc. This might just also make your user feel hungry.
If you are not among those who love to go the fun way with their work, then simple geometric patterns can also work wonders for you as they never fail to grab the attention. Circular and linear progress indicators may look lame to you but they are the strongholds of material design when it comes app indicators.
Animated Menus, Buttons and Controls
Animators these days are extensively using graphics to create menus, buttons and app controls to let the user toggle between the app features without making the whole experience monotonous. The menus have a plenty of scope for imagination when it comes to animation and you can take it a step further with your thinking and creativity, which in turn will make your app look distinctive. How about letting your user switch between day and night mode while using the app? Think. Think. Think.
Animated Refresh Pull
Believe it or not, but your users love swipe and refresh pattern in the apps as it is said to involve a kind of human interaction between the user and the app, as if they both are having a dialogue with each other while the app is being refreshed.
Your pull to refresh animation should come with a simple approach but it has to satisfying enough for your user to give them a sudden bounce effect to user their thumb again in your app.
A liquid pull refresh is another amazing way to add fun touch experience to the app.
To put it in a nutshell, the use of animation in your app interface is an excellent way not only to keep your users engaged but to make your app friendlier for the end user and easy to use even for those who are new to the world of applications.
Though, a designer and developer have to work in tandem to make sure that the elements the designer is thinking of should be brought well in the app to make app interactions interesting, intuitive, engaging, simple and most importantly ensure easy user experience. After all, the ultimate goal of having an animated app is to have ore users and increase your app downloads.