A UI design pattern is something challenging for designers. It’s because the formula is too simple. Aesthetic patterns and functionalities that are very simple have to be implemented. And that’s it. The UI is ready. Yet, if you judge it as mere patterns, then it becomes a cookie cutter kind of matter. You may not find out the difference in feel while using it.
To get the “right feel” go through some of the types of UI patterns based on which you can adapt to the desired type.
Here we go !
Let us focus on the main types of UI design patterns.
It’s not an easy pizzy task of cut copy pasting from one site to another. Uniqueness, simple and attractive. This is the most complicated thing. The visual strategies handled differ from site to site. This is where the problem either shrinks or becomes a perfect storm. The pattern should function as a platform on which you can customize your page rather than existing likes cloth bits to be stitched together for interface. Doesn’t mean they are some templates too.
The Input and Output – This pattern focuses on the form based interactions with the users. Like submitting some input to the site. The outputs thrown by the sites especially their behavior decides on how pleased the user felt during the journey.
The Navigation – The user shouldn’t feel lost when he is in your site. You should make sure they just don’t click on the home portion of their touch screens. Users tend to just leave straight away if they are displeased with the site behavior. So moving around the site should be designed as easy as it could be.
The Structure – Contents should have a smooth structure rather than appearing like fish market. An organized site will always ensure higher visit rate. The distribution of content will ensure prevention of data unread. Any information on your site shouldn’t be left unnoticed especially by the targets. In order to save them, it could be even said as mandatory to make sure there is a comprehensible structure followed.
Going Social – Better late than never. If nothing works ….never mind. We always have this life saver which promotes the business to unexpected extremes. This is a magical place which turns even the dead to life. Yes… you can opt for social media to make your business very lively provided you are obsessed to posting contents nonstop.
Three levels of patterns:
Now that you are familiar with pattern types, we shall move on to the levels of UI design.
Patterns have levels. That’s the trio level. Based on three benchmarks, you can deepen the patterns for better understanding.
- The implementation – This is the foremost base level strategy which is the overall walk through of the site. The bird view functioning of the system is what we categorize as implementation. The places that components take makes the page more simple. For eg. The search column if placed at the top right corner will ease the search process. Submit buttons placed in the end, scroll to bottom and top options are some ideas that should be in the checklist and of course implement them according to the site that you are building.
- The flow – A gradual flow concerned over the travel of users in the site should have a careful planning. This is what gives additional points to the pattern. Assisting the users throughout their movement in the site gives them confidence over using it making them feel free to navigate and explore. Plan over the best strategies of receiving inputs from users. Simplify that process to as much as you can thus customizing the site to specific needs.
Things to avoid: Giving a paralyzing feel to the users when they encounter overflowing options. Hide the additional options in the expandable menu as the main page may be cluttered. Remember your site shouldn’t me messy. When a site is over informative but unstructured, then it leads to a clumsy appearance which may turn users dissatisfied.
- The context – Context solely depends on the genre of your site. Say is it an entertainment related page. This would require fields like event calendar, portfolios etc. If it’s going to be an e-commerce site then may be a check out system would play a major role there. For a very complex site like airline related site, it wouldn’t need any massive social interactions. May be they should just concentrate on the marketing portion rather than a full pledged social site.
Is it the Right UI Design? Will the users have a good time? Let’s look into the step by step cross check for achieving near perfection….
Before jumping into the extreme details like the flow or implementation of user inputs and the navigation functions, it is important to focus on the visual hierarchy of the site.
Selecting the UI patterns and establishing it is a 4 step process.
- Problem determination – What was the cause?
- Research on how others solved such problems – May be the time consumption can be tracked and you may not waste time over researching all from scrap.
- Solution finding on other successful sites – Whoo!!! Here are the success stories. Follow them. Don’t copy them.
- Save the pattern and the proper usage so that recreation would be easy – A future motive.
Here is an example of UI Design Pattern
- The definition— what is the function of the pattern? It should be fit enough to get the inputs from the users in both quantitative and qualitative aspects. Only when there is sound information from the users the pattern can be considered as a healthy one to be used. If your business is a user input based, then keep the site a massively interacting one.
- Best pattern to be adapted— Have a reference so that it may guide you in achieving the goal. Have quite a number of good references instead of just sticking to one thing of your choice. The more you refer the more ideas you may be exposed to. Sometimes, you may even be careful of how a pattern shouldn’t be.
- What will this pattern solve— The choice of a pattern should suffice the requirements. The first one being the problems. Whatever problems that were the hindrance to a good site should be overcome by the use of the chosen pattern. If such a pattern is caught then don’t miss it.
- When should it be used— Say if you are using a ratings pattern, then it should require a feedback column either a written one or numerical or whichever format you wish to have. These patterns wouldn’t be required for a static blog site. So usage matters a lot.
- Pattern usage — This is the technically detailed area of your site. The hovering that creates minor difference in the UI which indicates some message to the users, or the option to change the user ratings in later times are some examples that determines how smart the pattern can be made use of.
That we have discussed about using the best UI patterns, it’s certain that you’ve got a clear picture for your start of pattern venturing.
Have a happy pattern discovery!!!