Global app revenue is expected to reach $76.52 billion in 2017. And, there is plenty of competition in the app market with apps practically available for everything an user wants. With so many mobile apps releasing in a short span of time, it is imperative that we build applications that focus more on the end user. A good user experience is what separates successful apps from unsuccessful ones.
To create a compelling mobile experience, it is important for you to understand what the user wants, needs and how people flow through your app. Based on their experiences, they will have to either choose to actively use your app or abandon it. Some mobile apps will be used just once and then forgotten. Maybe they didn’t work as expected or they didn’t stand out of the crowd.
User loyalty is an essential aspect of app development. It came to light when the App store suddenly saw an increase in the apps that were abandoned by users for various reasons like lack of content to engage the user or lack of communication channels within the app. Users were unable to give feedback and suggestions which is an important source by which app developers uphold a personal touch with the user. Users have high expectations from the customer support service. They expect the organization to listen to them and cater to their needs.
Million downloads and excellent reviews is the ultimate dream of every mobile app developer. But getting there requires a developer to focus on some important aspects of the app:
Applications are designed with a focus on business goals and its technological capabilities which omit the most significant part of the process, the end user’s perspective. Rather than the user adapting to the app, the app should be able to cater to the users needs which leads to an increase in user retention and loyalty.
A satisfied user experience is a result of usability. Usability is a measure of interaction of the user with the mobile interface also known as user experience. A user friendly mobile application is easy to use, learn, supports users needs and preferences. Usability depends on:
- How well the app responds to user’s expectations?
- How well the app fulfills the user’s individual need?
- How an app solves a problem?
- How the functionalities of an app fits the user’s needs?
From the user’s perspective, usability is important as it marks the line between performing a task accurately and enjoying the process. Whereas from a developer’s perspective, it is the difference between the success and the failure of the app. In both cases, lack of usability can cost time, resources, efforts and money which greatly defines the success or the failure of the app.
The challenging part is really defining what are the appropriate uses of an app:
Users are looking for different things from the apps, entertainment value is one of them. The idea is to make an app that is engaging and fun so that the user wants to come back. Entertainment can be centered around a game, allowing people to do different things and engage with your brand in a fun way like music or some competition.
The second most essential part of an app is centered around utility. The app needs to offer something valuable. It needs to provide news updates and bring valuable content to the table. It keeps the users engaged through feedbacks like ratings and review mechanisms within your app.
Solve a problem:
As a pillar of modern technology, mobile app should focus on solving problem. The problem may vary across domains. It could be as basic as providing the required information about your product.
Facebook is a perfect example of a user centric application that solves the most basic problem of a user. . It makes it easier for the users to connect with the world at all times. Similarly, YouTube, makes it easier for us to watch content from our phones for convenience. Hence, the mobile application should either solve a fundamental problem or enhance user’s lifestyle.
A few tips for creating a user centric app:
- Focus on what the users needs. Have users provide feedback to you to expand your perspective about the users needs and what you do with your mobile app.
- Every user has unique needs and wants while using the app, so try to appeal to as many people as possible while making the experience personal to each user.
- Complete your research on when people use your app and how much time they spend on using it. This will let you create realistic expectations for the app’s usability and productivity. If you have built a mobile app for businesses, then expect user’s to use it during work week and work hours.
- Collect feedback from users. This will help you improve your mobile app even after it is published.
- They will be able to tell you the features they like, so you can continue with those, and the features they don’t like, so you can improve/update/change them.