A comprehensive guide to app redesign in 2022
Does your product design seem a bit dated? Do you want to grow your platform user base and maintain a high retention rate? App redesign can help with all of this and more.
In this guide, you’ll learn about the best practices for ensuring a successful redesign launch. These recommendations are based on the experience we gained from hundreds of projects.
What is app redesign?
App redesign is a profound change of the product look and feel to ensure a better user experience. It can unlock amazing opportunities, such as increased downloads and a boost in revenue.
Can it be enough to make a quality design once and for all? Aligning your app design with the latest market trends can help you ensure a great user experience. The leading mobile apps like Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube keep on redesigning their apps.
Reasons for the app redesign
When should you start thinking about a redesign?
Your conversion rate is not what it could be
Have you analyzed the drop-off rate? A poor UX design can easily frustrate visitors. Whether or not the visitor converts into a loyal customer depends on the experience provided through the app. In the fast-paced online landscape, an outdated design is a competitive disadvantage. Most people associate bad design with bad service. It’s a phenomenon known as the halo effect. Over time, new user experience trends emerge and even the most stylish design seems outdated. Of course, it is not necessary to follow every new trend, but it is worth updating your app periodically to meet modern standards.
Poor user experience
The feedback you receive can play a vital role in enhancing your brand. If criticism is taken constructively, you can turn negative UX feedback into a great opportunity for your business. An app with an eye-catching design can become useless if people are confused while searching for a specific element. To ensure a smooth user experience, the interface should be as simple as possible. Feedback from users can help to make the screens more user-friendly.
The first thing users pay attention to is what your app looks like. According to Toptal, 94 % of first impressions are design-related. Would you consider using a tool that looks like it was designed in 2000? A fresh look and a powerful advertising campaign can evoke the interest of existing customers and help to find a new audience. Layout, color scheme, and space aesthetics — everything plays a role in keeping the visitor engaged.
Analyze your app and see whether it looks obsolete or non-functional. To stay relevant in the market, your product must be up to date with the latest advancements in technology and be able to compete with the best on the market.
Changing services or product
Have you launched a new feature? Things might have changed since you originally published your app. You should consider redesigning your app if you want to improve your current services or completely change the product concept.
Revolutionary vs. evolutionary redesign
There are two ways to redesign an application: revolutionary and evolutionary.
- Revolutionary redesign is a complete overhaul of an application. This approach is often used when the original design of the application no longer meets the needs of its users, or if it is simply outdated.
- Evolutionary redesign is a series of small changes that make the application more user-friendly. It involves making small adjustments to an existing interface rather than coming up with something entirely new. This approach allows you to introduce small changes over time so as not to overwhelm users.
In terms of choosing between these two options, it depends on your goals for the redesign. If you’re looking for a fresh start and want to create something entirely new for your users, then revolutionary might be the best option for you. However, if you want to keep things familiar but still make improvements along the way then evolutionary might be more effective.
How to redesign an app: a step-by-step guide
The process can seem overwhelming at first, but by following these steps you can make sure all the work is well worth it and avoid pitfalls.
Step 1: Understand your goals
When refining the UI/UX of your app, the first step for you as a product owner is to define goals you want to achieve with new designs.
Start by asking why you’re redesigning your app. Once you’ve identified the rationale behind the change, you should bear it in mind throughout the whole process. Your entire team should understand the why and be committed to achieving this overarching goal.
But how do you measure success? What KPIs should be tracked? To evaluate the effect of redesign, businesses can set some metrics indicating if customers are happy with the service, such as:
- Net Promoter Score (NPS)
- Time spent interacting with the product
Step 2: Identify customer pain points
Are there any issues with your UI or UX that you know for sure? Analyze your app, but remember that your feelings alone are not enough to correctly define your clients’ pain points.
What do your mobile app users complain about? User research allows us to identify customers’ needs and as a result create a more professional, up-to-date, and usable app.
Understanding user behavior is key to finding out how users interact with your product. If your app has been in the hands of real people for a few months, you likely have quantitative (e.g., stats on in-app usage) and qualitative (e.g., reviews and messages) data.
Monitor reviews that users leave your app, ask for feedback, and conduct user interviews. Dig deeper, talk with your clients to understand the following:
- what your app lacks
- what do users love/hate most about the product/flow/feature
- why did they choose this product over other alternatives
- what features do the find most helpful
- preferences, needs, and behavior patterns of your target audience
- the critical requirements your audience has
Check reviews on Play Store and App Store. See what users have to say about your mobile app on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Monitor brand mentions on Buzzsumo, BrandWatch, and Mention.
Do you notice that lots of users are complaining about a specific feature? Are users asking how to update a specific element? Listen to everyone’s thoughts, but don’t take user feedback as absolute truth. Filter through the noise and find where to focus.
Step 3: Review the competition
It’s important to map out the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. Review both direct and indirect competition.
Competitor analysis allows you to define what is considered a standard experience for your case. Also, it will help you to ensure that your application is at par with the best-performing ones.
Understand what each competitor’s product is targeted at and how advanced their features are. Pay close attention to the UI/UX and compare them with what your product offers. This data will give you a high-level overview of where you stand.
For inspiration, look beyond your competition. There are hundreds of amazing products that deal with similar problems that you are trying to solve in a different context. Study them closely. See what they are doing, how they are doing it, and what can work for you.
Step 4: Define the improvements to be made
Compile all the feedback, insights, and group similar ones. Develop a clear list of changes that you’d want to make and point out what challenges they aim to solve.
Once you found out the issues, the next step is to find solutions for each identified problem.
For each opportunity, it’s crucial to understand what it will take to deliver it and how much value it will add for the end-user. Try to find the low-hanging fruits.
Prioritize areas that need special attention and divide the tasks amongst the team.
Step 5: Build lasting UX/UI
A great design needs to be effective, and that means it needs to serve a purpose. If you take the time to analyze your audience and their needs, you’ll be able to figure out what they need from your product or service. Then, you can use that information to create a design that will solve their problem and meet their expectations. Now, you can organize all the insights into an effective design solution.
Step 6: Test your redesign with users
Don’t forget that everything you are doing is for users. The essential stage of any design project is testing.
You can use beta testers or A/B testing mechanisms to see how people respond to the update. If the results are not satisfactory, go back, analyze what you did wrong, and make all necessary changes. Receive the feedback constructively, and use it to develop the best version of your app.
Test the prototype to identify gaps until the app can be sent to developers so that they can implement the new design.
Step 7: Monitor user response upon launch
After months of research, iteration, design, and development, it’s finally time to launch.
As time goes on, the feedback and usage data will start trickling in. Regularly review the new data to ensure that you’re achieving your initial goals.
Did engagement increase? Are there more positive reviews in the app store than there were before? Monitor analytics post-release and use your data to uncover opportunities for improvement.
But keep in mind that users will need to go through some initial adjustments. Give them some time to fall in love with a new design.
App redesign by Volpis
Volpis have worked with some of the biggest names in the industry to help them create better experiences for their users, and we want to bring that expertise to your application. We’ll work with you to develop an eye-catching design that will draw users back again and again.
If you’re planning to redesign your app, we’d love to answer any questions you may have. Drop us a message at email@example.com or connect on LinkedIn.