The visual design of communications with customers is now more important than ever. With the reduced size of mobile devices and users that are often distracted, mobile communications must be designed in such a way as to be easily read or scanned. You want your visual design to promote easy digestion of content. Additionally, you will want to consider the physical constraints of mobile devices and best practices.
Any business or brand will want its mobile users to get the same value from their web site as customers viewing the site on desktop computers. To do this, they should recognize that mobile devices have had a significant impact on the way that designers should approach the layout of their messaging.
They need to understand how people comprehend and decipher information. Our brains can interpret visual information faster than words. This means that visuals and imagery can be very useful to enhance communication. Proper visual styling adds a great deal of value to communications and improves the overall user experience regardless of whether a web site’s visitors are viewing it from a mobile device or desktop computer.
Design on a grid
When it comes to the visual design of communication you want to make sure you are consistent. Consistent visual design will produce clarity. For instance, proper usage of spacing between content sections will create a desirable appearance that supports good communication.
Designing on a grid will make reading and understanding content easier, not only for your mobile users, but desktop visitors as well. Create clear horizontal rules for the different typography you use, such as headers and body text, as well as defining the spacing that goes in between content sections. By establishing standardized guidelines, you will make sure that your copy is easier to read.
Choose your colors carefully
Color has a profound effect on human beings. As we see different colors, it affects each of us; this can be used in multiple ways to improve the effectiveness of your content and interactions. The colors you choose can convey tone and style, helping to create an overall feeling. Bright colors are fun; on the other hand, darker colors feel more refined.
Take the time to develop an understanding of color theory to help you choose colors that best fulfil your design objectives. Think about how you can use colors to highlight important items or to demonstrate how different items throughout your site are connected. The better you understand color, the better you will be at communicating effectively with your intended audience.
For instance, color can be used to improve the quality of your messages and notifications, utilize colors that most users understand to make it easier for users to understand the intent of your message quickly. For successful actions, use green so users understand at a glance that their action was successful. On the other hand, red should be used for error messages to quickly convey the message. The use of consistent color conventions can vastly improve the quality of your communications.
Use easy-to-understand icons
The careful selection of icons can help improve your mobile communications. With limited screen space on mobile devices, icons provide a way to quickly communicate concepts that are generally easily understood. Visual metaphors, especially those that have become regularly accepted standards, such as the email icon, are able to work without labeling and can help improve the clarity of your design.
Help users interact
Remember that mobile devices are based on touch generally. Your interface must be designed to make these actions easy to understand and use. It must be easy for users to explore your content if they are going to read it. The sizing and placement of various elements should promote ease of use, additionally, use size and placement to illustrate the importance of different items. A well-defined visual hierarchy can be invaluable.
Help your users explore your content without accidently selecting an action that they didn’t intend to tap. You don’t want your users to accidently activating touch targets when they are scrolling through your content. To do this, make sure you put enough spacing between elements so that users can easily navigate your web site.
Along with this, you want to make sure you are creating properly sized buttons. This will help make sure that they are easy for users to select. Buttons should be large enough that they can easily be selected by the average fingertip. You should also place related buttons within easy reach of each other to allow for quick transitions. This will help reduce confusion and make it easier for users to explore your content.
Understand device constraints
Mobile devices, due to their form factor, create some basic usability considerations. Mobile device users must focus their attention on a smaller area and because this, the way they approach interactions is different than the way that visitors to web sites on desktop computer do. Layouts that take this into consideration will help improve the user experience. The limited space that is available on most mobile device screens are a constraint that should be considered when determining how you will display content and create interactions.
Focused and streamlined layouts tend to work best on mobile devices. You need to consider how best to use the limited real estate available. Utilizing the grid mentioned earlier in this article will help you structure your content evenly on a vertical basis to improve the look and understandability. If you carefully define spacing around headlines, copy, images and buttons, it will make it easier for users to understand your layout at a glance. This helps lead users to not only understand content but to be able to accomplish their intended tasks more easily. It also will help create a clean layout that is visually pleasing for users.
Designing specifically for mobile has some challenges, but those challenges can be turned into opportunities if handled correctly. Innovative thinking and creativity allow one to create solutions to constraints and reward those that do so. If you design your content with mobile in mind you will find that the solutions that you come up with will help propel you ahead of competition that is not addressing these issues.
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