The Art of Micro-Interactions in Mobile App User Experience

  • Mobile App Design
  • 9 July
  • 6 min read

The mobile app market is getting more and more crowded. To make your app stand out among 2 million you’ll need more than just a nice design and lots of luck.

 

The best mobile app design is a blend of art and science that constantly delight the user. It’s more than just adding features that you think users need. Mobile app design companies should pay more attention to detail than ever before. Their product should not only be visually pleasing but designed especially for the end-user.

 

High-level personalization is key for a successful app. It involves using little things that humanize the experience so that it’s pleasurable for the consumer. That’s where micro-interactions, transitions and in-app animations come in hand.

 

You might’ve heard it already: good design is obvious, but great design is transparent. That’s so true for design, especially when it comes to using in-app animations for improved user experience design.

In this article, we’re going to talk about the art of micro-interactions in particular and how to use them without distracting the user from the main purpose of a mobile application.

Defining Micro-Interactions

Micro-interactions are small details within the app, that serve a single function. On their own they are rather invisible but taken together, they contribute to the overall user experience. The functions they provide are usually accomplishing a specific task, communicating the results of it or provide a visualization of a user’s action.

 

There are several forms of micro-interactions. Some of them are sounds, vibrations or on-screen animations. Their main purpose is to give the user control over the app. 

 

Micro-interactions are among the hottest trends in mobile UI design for 2019. Great examples of such are the “skip ad” button on YouTube or social media reactions. Animation of how to fill a form, for instance, is also nice because it gives the user confidence. We have tons of micro-interaction on a daily basis without even realizing it.

Adding Micro-Interactions to Your Mobile App

A tricky part of incorporating micro-interactions into your mobile app is that they need to be invisible and feel normal, yet still, serve an important purpose. You need to be careful not to distract or annoy users with their presence or affect the overall performance of your app.

Here are the areas where micro-interactions are most helpful:

  • Visual feedback

Visual animation’s main task is to inform users an action was successful. People naturally feel that objects respond to their interactions with them. Animations can imitate these interactions in a mobile app. Vibrations and visual signs also serve for providing reaction from an application.

 

A simple trick, for example, can help a user understand that an action is done. 

  • Loading Animations

Micro-interactions are a great way to keep a user informed. Timelines, progress bars or other elements could be extremely helpful for successful user experience. They let the user know if a process is moving forward or even if it failed. This provides the psychological comfort of a user. As we know that people’s attention span is not that long, so keeping them informed of any progress is crucial.

 

Understanding the exact level of a process and how long would it take for it to be done is important for eliminating negative user experience. You can make the progress animation an entertaining element, which makes users more willing to wait a couple of seconds more, so it really saves you time.

  • Navigation Animation

The main job of a mobile app designer is to create an accessible application with simplified user interactions. The navigation within it should be as easy and intuitive as possible. When it comes to that navigation, the animation is a game-changer.

 

You might have hidden in-app elements, that are easily found with the help of animation. Optimizing an app in such a way is great especially if it’s larger and contains more functions and data.

  • Animated Marketing

Marketing animation is a highly engaging way of communication with your target audience. An animated logo, for instance, is able to increase brand awareness. It easily attracts user attention and is more recognizable among competitors.

 

This method is mostly used if you want to attract attention to a specific element. It also builds an emotional relationship between a brand and it’s users. Marketing animation is often used on the welcome screen as a first impression of the app.

 

If your animated logo is catchy, your brand could be easily differentiated. It can intrigue users and make them want to find out more of it, which means more time on your app and that means a higher chance of purchasing your service or product. Do you see where we’re going? And that’s only with the help of a nice welcoming animation.

Animations are for users

There a possibility that you get off track with animation implementing. Keep in mind that users are going to be using the end product. The best way is to put yourself in their shoes and start designing. 

 

User-centric apps are the most successful one, so you need to provide a personalized user experience and aesthetically pleasing design, as well as smooth performance. Achieving all that and a lot of testing is what can bring your mobile app ahead of the game.

Conclusion

Designing a successful mobile app is challenging, with all the fierce competition out there. When implementing these smaller bits designers should think of the way consumers use their devices and make the interactions intuitive.

 

Micro-interactions improve the overall user experience while personalizing it so that consumers have more control over a mobile app and enjoy its use. They are the little pieces of art that bring life to an app.

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