Tips on How Not to Overdesign Your App



We get it, you’ve got this super cool app idea that is the best thing the world will see. You have this grand vision of all of the different features it could have that will make it stand out from the rest of the competition and put your new application on top. You’ve got investors and people rallying behind you to root you on. You are going to change the world with this idea, but first, let’s make sure your claim to the throne is a smooth and seamless process. You don’t want to overdesign your app,as in, build it with a lot of features that may not be necessary to its core function.

One of the biggest problems that entrepreneurs face when looking to launch a new product idea is focusing so much on the vision that they forget practicality. Make sure your idea is as polished as possible to save you, your possible investors, and your future users money and time. In this blog, we will be discussing a few tips on how not to overdesign your app so that you can keep sight of the vision while maximizing your app’s usability.

  1. Validate Your Idea
    We know that you probably hear this all the time, but validating your idea is the most important step to getting your great idea out there. A lot of times when clients come to us with a vision for a new app, they often haven’t done the adequate research to ensure that their app hasn’t already been done either directly or indirectly. We understand that you want your idea to be something original and that you have no competition, but you have to take the appropriate steps. Doing competitive research is essential to make sure that your idea is something that actually is as unique as you claim it is, while being something that users would actually use. Taking the time to take a step back to thoroughly understand your idea and do the research needed to challenge it is a crucial first step to ensure that the journey you want to embark on is needed and worthwhile.
  2. Develop UX Flows
    Once you have validated your idea, take the time to map it out with User Experience (UX) flows. These are essentially interaction flow blueprints that visualize the flow of information and their respective interaction points in a diagram. These are developed prior to beginning the design of an application to ensure that all aspects of said application are laid out and adequately fleshed out. The UX flows help you plan out what is essential to the main functionality of the application, while ruling out features that may inhibit a smooth user experience. Developing UX flows alongside a development team will also help you gather an understanding of how much the development of the application will cost. They can also serve as a roadmap for future application versions and updates.
  3. Obtain User Feedback
    After creating your UX flows and designing your application, get feedback through user testing sessions to help hone in your designs. It’s one thing to do your research and get the green light that this is an idea worth pursuing, it is another process to refine your idea once it starts to take shape. Once you begin designing the app, you want to get real users involved as soon as possible to give feedback from things such as colors, to interactions, to features now that they are able to see high-fidelity designs. This will ensure you are not making any assumptions on behalf of the potential users that may make their experience with the app unpleasant. Obtaining user feedback will help ensure that you are designing an app for the user.

Creating an app can become a complicated and arduous process if the time isn't taken to reign in lofty ideas with a good and thorough process. Slowing down and doing the research needed to challenge your idea, map out the essential interactions, and engage potential users in feedback sessions are all of the key steps needed to make sure your app is as refined as possible. 

At Lithios, we take this approach with every one of our clients to set them up for success in the short and long term. Through our process, we save our clients hours of time and thousands of dollars by working with them through our Discovery sessions to unpack their visions and help guide them to the optimum solutions for their and their future user’s needs. During the Discovery workshops, we help our clients assess their competitors, define the core functionality of the application, and build out UX flows to map out the app’s interactions. We then bring all of these to life with samples of what the potential application could look like that they could then all take and share with potential users to obtain feedback. 

If you are looking for an experienced agency to help you make the best app for your needs, feel free to drop us a line here to get started.

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