How to Overcome Mobile App Usability Issues
In order to make your mobile app user experience (UX) truly seamless, everything from onboarding to checkout needs to work perfectly. Usability is an integral part of the user experience and thus it plays a very important role in experiences that are efficient, pleasant to use, and enjoyable. Overlooking something as simple as navigation on a mobile app can impact the UX negatively, which will be the difference between a returning user and a deleted app. If your app is useful and valuable to the user but requires a lot of time and effort, people won’t bother learning how to use it.
What is Mobile App Usability?
Mobile app usability in simple term refers to the ease of access or effort it takes for a user to accomplish their goals.
There are many factors that contribute to a mobile app’s usability that will impact the overall efficiency and effectiveness in which a user completes their goal. A usable interface should have three main outcomes:
- It should be easy for the user to become familiar with the UI
- It should be easy for users to achieve their goal when using the app
- It should be error-free.
In a world that is well dominated by smartphones, finding a way to interact and engage with customers is becoming increasingly important. While the user interface is a crucial part of the UX, usability should always take precedence. If an app is aesthetically pleasing but difficult to use, the overall user perception of your app will be negative as a result. Here are a few mobile app usability issues that are often overlooked in mobile app development.
One of the main issues that users have when using mobile apps, particularity m-commerce apps is poor navigation. This means,while they are using the app, they have difficulty finding what they are looking for, and have to navigate too long to find it.
When a user first downloads your app, they need to clearly understand how to navigate in order to complete their goal, whether that’s booking an appointment, purchasing a product, or finding a piece of information. Your navigation should have as few barriers as possible. Many apps include unique features but struggle to fit them together in a way that makes sense for the user. The navigation should be comprehensible for the user so they won’t end up lost on a random page.
2. Platform Usability
A common frustration for any mobile users is not having an app that works for their specific model of smartphone. Android and iOS, for example, are two different platforms. You can’t simply clone your iOS app for Android and vice versa. Android comes with an entirely different set of programming, design, and user interface considerations. For example, navigation for each platform differs quite significantly. iOS for one, doesn’t have a “back” button like Android.
With that in mind, you should tailor your app to work within the native Android experience so your users can interact intuitively. It’s a good idea to budget for this so that you can ensure your app is optimized for the most common Android smartphones.
3. Clear & Concise Content
It’s common knowledge to simplify content when designing for mobile. However, you need just enough content that is essential to the user in order to complete a goal. This is particularly true for a buying process. Consumers still need complete information to make their purchase, and withholding basic information will result in a lower conversion rate. You should be tailoring your content for mobile, rather than copying it verbatim from web. Including too much information in your mobile app will undoubtedly result in a poor user experience with frustrated users digging to find what they’re looking for. Make it as easy as possible for the user to consume your content with as little pinching and zooming as possible by presenting the information in a clear and concise way.
4. Consider Landscape Orientation
When developing a mobile app, many people don’t consider landscape orientation as important. A good mobile app should be designed for both portrait and landscape to accommodate for optimal usability and user experience, particularly for an app that contains video content.
User Testing & Feedback
The most important thing you can do to test usability is to use mobile A/B testing platforms such as Leanplum. A/B testing allows you to compare two or more variations of a particular app design or layout. For instance, you can test the effectiveness of buttons and how they differ in driving conversions. Which design layout do your users convert more with? Instead of guessing what users prefer in your mobile app, test to validate these assumptions. To improve mobile app usability, you cannot overlook testing.