What is Microcopy and How to Master It?

In simplest terms, microcopy is the bits of text that guide the users on a site to improve their experience over there. The reason why UX designers keep it and must keep it short is to make it easier for the users to understand.

microcopy ux

Microcopy, in apps and websites, includes stuff like hint text, error messages, among others. Its prime motive is to assist the users when interacting with a product.

Sometimes, small things influence more than the bigger ones, and microcopy is one of the former ones.

Why does Microcopy matter?

UX designers want users to perform the action they (designers) desire. The action can be anything from subscription, to purchase, to share and pretty much anything. Micropcopy is the technique that does the convincing for the designers.

Another great thing about the technique is that it improves the user experience by being true to the brand. However, getting too cheesy may make it suffer more than work.

How to master Microcopy?

Most of the designers have adopted it to generate more profits for their business or the organization. Some of them do it the right way while others do random things. Little do they realize the consequences of such things.

  • Before you do it, make sure you know whether it is even required or not.
  • If you think it is useful, begin with the word selection. Remember that it must be short, bold, and active.
  • Think of the situations when a user will encounter the microcopy at your site.
  • As mentioned earlier, it should be not cheesy. A microcopy must be hundred percent real.
  • Since it is a part of the design, it must remain as one. You need to understand as to how it will fit into the visuals of the site or app.

microcopy

You need to be ultra clear and precise with the message that you want to deliver to the users. Since it is to improve the user experience, you cannot go overboard with the number of words.

Wrap Up

The microcopy has a lot to do with the content explanation and conversions. You must not look at its size, but the effectiveness. If you pay attention to the features of the technique, you will get much better results.

The tone of the message may change according to the niche of the site and its audience, but fundamentals must remain the same.

3 Tips for Developers to Improve the User Retention on a Mobile App

Application designers generally think that a high number of downloads of their app means its success. However, what they don’t understand is that user retention is way more important in this regard. Some brands even pay hefty amounts just to acquire some users. People, that is where the game begins, and there’s more to it than you think.

User Retention

The first one is app engagement, which clearly means the amount of time a user spends on an app. Retention is the percentage of people who go back to an app and perform some action after some days.

Here’s the data which says that nearly 80 per cent of the people who download an app remove it within the first three days. That’s quite disturbing for any developer out there. However, there’s always a way out of a mess, and we have some tips for you to follow.

Improve the functionality of the app

Let us face it- a user does not use and keep an app in his device if it does nothing but lags. You must understand that there always is some room for improvement. One minor bug can sometimes cause significant trouble for users. Well, we don’t think that consequences need a mention here. The more it lags, crashes, or slow down, the more it will affect the metrics.

Introduce the app properly

The description in the app store is where it begins. A user comes to know about the purpose of an application through its description in the first place. The presentation is the first step toward converting the audience into users. It must be written in such a way that a user gets curious to see its content in the first read. And if you deliver what you claim, the odds of people using it frequently increase tenfold.

Mobile app user retention

Use the FOMO Factor

For those who don’t know what it is; it is called Fear of Missing Out. A user opens an application where he thinks he’ll miss something if he does not use it regularly. This can be achieved by adding a bit of social touch to the app. Even if it does not sound likely, the reality is that it works in most of the cases.

Conclusion

Besides the tips mentioned above, you can create a website for the app as well. It will help users get the updates about what’s happening in there. Don’t worry if you have no idea about programming; you can still build a website by using content management systems like SiteSonic which perform the coding at the backend. All you will have to do is to drag-and-drop the themes and features, and the site is ready.

Top 5 JavaScript and CSS Animation Snippets for Web Designers

Do you want to create some attractive text effects on your site that can engage the users even more? Well, there are some popular CSS and JS animation snippets that you can use. The fundamentals of CSS and few lines of JavaScript code, and you are done. The effects include three-dimensional rotations to text animation, and much more.

animation snippets

With the help of this post, you will come to know about the top x JavaScript and CSS animation snippets. Keep reading to learn and understand them briefly.

JS Mickey Watch

Although it is not needed for most of the sites, you can use it on the ones that are meant for children. Basically, all you need to perform is to combine some SVG graphics, CSS, and JS to position the hands of Mickey as hours and minutes hands of a watch.

Pixel Alphabet

Georgi Nikoloff created this one to play with the HTML5 canvas element. Most of this snippet runs on JavaScript. Basically, it converts the letters into a flexible element. The font that it uses is the ‘Noto Serif.’

The role of JavaScript in this strange snippet is to break up the letters into dots. And these dots are the ones that create the basis of animation. One thing that you’ll learn from it is the distance that web animations have covered so far.

Tyger Tyger

The name of the snippet is taken from William Blake’s poem “The Tyger.” The focus of this attractive snippet is more on typographic animations than the content.

Through this snippet, you can add outlines and glowing effects to different segments of the text separately.

website

Typing Carousel

You may have seen this one on the websites of a lot of business firms. It’s a typing text snippet that stimulates a person typing a text in the word processor.

It uses a blend of CSS and JS animations to contain everything in one element. Business websites use it to list their description of the current and previous clients.

Filling SVG Text

This one is relatively unique and uses a mix of CSS stroke property and box shadows. In this snippet, the entire text is built with SVG. But, one can manually select the text as per his choice.

Another great thing about this snippet is that it works perfectly fine with every web browser. Also, the text is flexible enough to fit into possibly every website.

What is Atomic Web Design and Why Do You Need It?

The design community has to use quite a lot of frameworks, techniques, and approaches to pace to deliver according to the needs. However, every designer has his preferences. Some work in a top-down way, while others use the fundamental elements to complete the job. One such technique is using the atomic web design.

atomic web design

Atomic Design is nothing but a framework which makes it more comfortable to manage the significant products. Besides, it can be referred to as a design methodology as well. Either way, the core principles remain the same. The prime focus of using an atomic design is to enhance the efficiency of the team.

The process of Atomic Web Design

  • Just like the atoms are building blocks of a molecule in chemistry, they are the foundational blocks of the web pages. They entail the most basic HTML elements like buttons, labels, inputs, and many more. The point here is that nothing can break them into pieces.
  • When a number of atoms are combined, they make a molecule. The molecules in web design are used to complete the desired function. An example here is an image header containing a title label.
  • A more complex element of the design is an organism. Organisms are created when some simple user interface elements combine. In web design, they are used as distinct patterns.
  • These organisms combine to make templates, which then work in unison to create some page-level objects. Templates are used to articulate the structure of a design.

atomic design

Why use Atomic Web Design

There have to be some features that make something worth using. Atomic web design has a couple of them for you.

Mix & Match

With this technique, you can break down the complex components into basic atoms. This makes it possible to see which parts of the site can be used again. You can also mix and match them with other molecules and organisms.

Simple Layout

The interface in atomic web design is easier to understand. Not just writing the code, but is easier to understand it in the future as well. With this one, you don’t even have to worry about the duplicate codes. Simply put, even a new developer can understand the code base without any issues.

Prototyping is rapid

It is more comfortable for the designers to mock up page if they have atoms before they begin. One has to do nothing more than combining essential elements in the start. Then, later on, designers can easily refine and customize the site.

Final Words

The designing techniques evolve with time, and designers have to learn and implement them to improve their productivity. Atomic web design is one of the approaches makes it a little easier for the designers to come up with the desired results. However, if you do not know how to code, you can still build a website by using the likes of SiteSonic. They help you create a site through drag-and-drop mode.

5 Tips to Design a Mobile-Friendly Website

Most of the websites can be seen on a mobile device, but that does not make them mobile-friendly website. With the number of mobile users increasing every day, mobile-friendly sites are not an option anymore. They have rather become a necessity today.

mobile-friendly website

It is because search engines use it as one of the ranking parameters. And website owners want their sites to appear on top to generate more revenues.

If you want to design a new site, or re-structure an old one, make sure you follow these tips. It is because you should create everything for mobile users as well.

Take care of the size

The first thing that you should do is to take care of the size of the pages on your site. Imagine clicking on a button at some site through your mobile only to end up at the wrong place. Search engines know if a site provides its users with the desired results or not. And if a website spoils the experience of its users, there’s no way it can rank higher. Besides, you should use the optimal size for fonts and buttons as well.

Consider using a responsive framework

Always remember that users engage to the sites which are responsive enough to load within the specified time frame. If a website takes longer than a few milliseconds to load, it loses the user in a blink of an eye. To do this, you can use some popular mobile-first HTML frameworks like Foundation and Bootstrap. The content structure that these frameworks use is grid-based. This means that you can define every section of your site separately.

Make it Quick

Like others, loading speed is a ranking factor as well. And for better user experience, the speed of a site is way more crucial than one can imagine. To do this, you can use the following things:

  • Use smaller images

By smaller, we mean that you need to use high-quality images but in the compressed form. By compressing the pictures, you get the same image in a somewhat small byte size.

  • Setup a free CDN

It is better to deliver the content to users based on their geographical location. That’s how the users get the most relevant data.

  • Go to a secured protocol

Moving your site to a secured protocol (HTTPS), and installing an SSL certificate improves the loading speed of a website. Also, as the name conveys, it makes your site secure.

mobile friendly site

Cut down the text entry

Most times, mobile users prefer swiping through the pages on a website instead of scrolling endlessly. It is challenging to input text on sites through mobile devices. And to make it mobile-friendly, you need to replace the typing columns with drop-down lists. Anything that causes issues to the users can result in the negative analytics of a website. That’s why you should design your site in a way that users don’t find it difficult to navigate or interact.

Don’t forget to test

When you are finally done with designing a mobile-friendly site, don’t forget to test it a couple of times. This is because testing will give you an opportunity to understand the design flaws on your own. Not to mention, there’s always some room for the improvement in most of the things we make. However, you do not have much of an idea about web designing; you can use some content management systems like SiteSonic. They make it comfortable for you to create a website without any coding or whatsoever. All you will need is a mouse to drag and drop the pre-loaded themes and designs to get the work done.

The Dos and Don’ts of using Web Animations on your Website

Every web designer has a question in his mind, to use web animations on site or not. The straightforward answer to this question is that use it if it allows the visitors to enjoy. It is indeed a challenge to add motions to some areas of the sites, while others remain untouched. Make sure that those animations don’t interrupt the users’ activity or spoil their experience on your site.

web animations

Before you start to implement them, know the basics of animations. There are multiple forms of animations that designers can use on their site. They can either be micro-interactions or transitions on a web page.

What to Animate and what to leave?

As mentioned already, don’t animate the entire site for the sake of fun. There are sure some areas on every site where you simply can’t implement unnecessary motions.

Dos for Web Animations

  • You can use animations on the loading bars and navigation buttons.
  • Apply them on the elements that are there to draw attention. It can be the message icon or call to action button.

Don’ts for Web Animations

  • Never use the animations on a paragraph. They can hamper the functionality of your site.
  • Don’t add any animation to a spot where a user makes the changes on a website.

Let us explain some of the vital things in brief.

design for web animations

Don’t cross the limits

Being a web designer, you should know that there are some limits here. You can change the opacity or transform it, but that’s the limit. Don’t go beyond this; else you’ll end up making things worse.

It might not be a significant deal for a user if the width or margin on a site changes. But, for a computer to do this, it is a lot. So, take care of it when you sit to design your website.

Go one by one

To maintain a healthy relationship with animations, work on them one by one. This is because every single animation works well as a separate entity. Once you introduce it to others, they will all mess up. Scheduling them all in a proper sequence is the key to keep it smooth for the users.

Work at a slow pace

Animation designing is all about timing. Remember that you need to go slow to make the things work smoothly. It does not matter whether you are using the CSS or JS, it is recommended to perform a little more than usual math. Also, if you use variables for the same, you will get much better results in the end.

Don’t add them to the scroll

Some designers have started to use animations on the scrolling feature of their sites. Whether they are bad or worse is a matter of debate, people still use them. The worst thing one can do in this context is to build the scroll functionality for his site manually. However, it is always preferred to go for the one which you get as default from the browser.

Things you need to know about IoT Prototyping

IoT has gradually made its way into our homes. And not just houses, it is there in almost every aspect of our lives. IoT prototyping is used to frame out the necessary parameters of product deployment. Although challenging, it is a rewarding engineering process.

IoT

Before we dive deep into the stages of this process, we must know what it is. After all, anything that you learn must start from fundamentals.

What is IoT?

As the name suggests, Internet of Things is a concept which applies to the devices or things that are connected to the internet. A mobile, computer, wearables, and every other device that connects to the internet fall under the category of IoT.

It is not a buzz, but a vast network of devices and things that are connected to humans. Mostly, fitness enthusiasts use one of such devices to track their workout schedule and the health parameters like heart rate.

What is the IoT Prototyping?

It is the way through which you produce IoT hardware and embed it with some off the shelf components. These components include microcontrollers, sensors, and printed circuit boards.

However, a prototype is merely a trial version of the product that you desire to produce for the market. It is done to see how great the product will work once it is out in the market.

Anatomy of IoT Prototype

An IoT prototype has usually has three integrated interfaces. However, the number varies according to the needs. The rule here is that it must have at least two integrated interfaces.

The interfaces that it commonly has are:

A mobile application

It is the application on your mobile phone that lets you read the sensor data of the connected hardware. You can also make the connected device function through this app.

A web application

If you have a Wi-Fi enabled device, you can connect the web apps to a remote interface to manage the way the things work.

Hardware

It includes the components that help you host the sensors of your device. The equipment may consist of anything from a solder to a wire.

Internet of Things

Conclusion

There’s no end to the prototyping standards of IoT, and it is critical before you finally come up with the product. And the best part is that it is quite easy for everyone to learn it. Always remember that it is the first step towards the goal, and there will be obstacles all along the way.

Static and Dynamic Websites- What’s the Difference?

The entire internet is full of websites. While some of them are static, the others ones are dynamic. These are two different kinds of sites with some remarkable differences.  Static and dynamic websites are unique in their own ways.

It takes lesser effort to create a static site, as it needs no custom coding and databases. On the other hand, a dynamic site displays different content using the same source code.

website building

Keep reading the article to understand the difference between static and dynamic websites. It will help you understand which one to use for your project as well.

Coding difference between Static and Dynamic Websites

Static

To write a static website, you don’t need any special software. All you need is knowledge of programming languages like HTML and CSS. Even a programmer who is not so much technically sound can code a static site. It just is a collection of text and some multimedia files.

Dynamic

Unlike static ones, dynamic websites let users interact with them. They are not limited to the reading purpose only. In these websites, the content can be changed even when they are running on a client’s system. To make it happen, developers use languages like PHP, Asp.NET, and JSP, etc.

The difference in their Flexibility

Static

This is the parameter where static websites have the upper hand. They are more flexible because, for static sites, designers have the liberty to create and edit separate pages differently.

Dynamic

Dynamic websites, on the other hand, are way less flexible than static sites. This is because their prime focus is to deliver interactive features and a unique combination of dynamic content. These aspects can only be achieved through high-end web servers.

Content in Static and Dynamic Websites

Static

In the case of static websites, every user is fed with the same content. This is because the server delivers the same HTML file to every user. It only changes when the developer changes it on the backend.

Dynamic

The content served to the users on dynamic sites depends on his request. It is as the real-time content transformation for every visitor according to his needs. The best part is that any non-technical person can change the content for dynamic sites as well.

static and dynamic websites

Conclusion

Dynamic websites are a lot more sophisticated than the static ones. It is far easier to manage the data on dynamic sites. However, to create a static website, you don’t have to invest a lot of time. You can even use some of the content management systems like SiteSonic for that matter. Choose the type of website according to the niche and target audience. Keep the differences in your mind and do consider them before you start to code.

Accelerated Mobile Pages- Things you should know about it

Google, in collaboration with Twitter, had launched a project called accelerated mobile pages or AMP. The purpose for this project was to promote the optimization of sites for the mobile devices. In its official blog post, Google mentioned that it wants publishers to create the content rich webpages for the mobile devices.

Accelerated Mobile Pages

Why was accelerated mobile pages project launched in the first place?

Behind the project is the surge in number of users using mobile devices to browse the internet. The sites that were not mobile friendly took quite a lot of time to load on a mobile phone. This affects the users’ experience, and eventually the sites’ analytics.

How does it enhance the Loading Speed of the Sites?

It prioritizes the loading elements in a viewport so one can see a webpage on any device without scrolling. Users interact with the AMP webpage on the Google servers because that is where they are rendered. This means that they are all available on the Google cache. Even if it saves a couple of milliseconds, the loading time does come down at the end.

Benefits of AMPs

They help you improve the ranking of your site. This is because satisfied people will stay on your webpage for a considerable period. And if they find the content they are looking for, odds are that those users will navigate between several pages on the site.

All this brings down the bounce rate pogo sticking effect of the site. Let us circle around these benefits one after another.

Speed attracts the Users

Any webpage that loads quickly on the web attracts more users than the ones that take forever to open. Yes, the quality of content on the site does matter, but it would go unnoticed if the site does not load in time.

loading

Increases the Browser Visibility

One can easily identify the AMP sites by looking at its symbol on the search engine result page. The symbol is a thunder flash in a green circle. And it helps the website gain more traffic because people prefer the sites that load faster, and let them browse without any difficulty.

Improves Search Engine Rankings

Although Google has not made it a ranking factor, it indirectly improves the ranking of site by pushing the conversions. AMP sites load faster than the other ones, and they work closely with the mobile devices.

Conclusion

AMP is a fabulous thing, and it is slowly becoming common. Of course, anything that makes you meet the Google’s standards in regard to user experience is a promising project.

Although not so popular currently, it is going to be an influential project over the time. When it comes to generating revenues, no one misses do pursue technology.

Internet of Things- Here’s What You Need to Know

In this world full of people using the Internet every day, how could devices remain disconnected to the network? That’s where the term Internet of Things came out. It is used for the devices or let us say the things that are connected to a network connection to perform some of the basic tasks.

Internet of things applications

The increase in availability of the internet, and the devices that have the ability to connect to a wireless network are the actual reasons why Internet of Things is such a great thing.

How does it Work?

It works on the embedded systems. Some chips and sensors are embedded in the physical objects, which then communicate with each other. For communication, they use a common IoT platform.

The platform on which they communicate uses analytics to mine the data. It is efficient because the sensors and chips ignore any irrelevant data and forward the favorable one.

Business Sectors that use Internet of Things

Since the IoT data is fairly reliable, many business sectors use it enhance their performance. Some of the major ones where it finds its applications are:

  • Manufacturing Sector:

Throughout a manufacturing unit, transparency is of utmost importance. IoT ensures the same.

  • Banking:

IoT is helpful for banks and other financial institutions as it provides them with the accurate lending decisions.

  • Auto Sector:

Vehicle performance is what is important for the auto makers. They need to understand it to improve it. IoT enables them to analyze it for the purpose.

Internet of Things

Gadgets for consumers that use IoT

Besides just the industry, it helps improve the standard of other people as well. There are quite a lot of consumer gadgets on the market.

Televisions are the most common devices that use IoT to help people access network-based media. They can use wire and wireless modes to do it. Other than TVs, light bulbs, switches, and some heavy electrical devices use it as well.

Also, the security cameras that you control from anywhere use this technology as well.

End Note

Since it has its applications in a lot of industries, the future of IoT is undoubtedly bright. It is fit for businesses of all sorts and sizes. The firms that use it are already unique in their own way.

Billions of devices are connected to the network today, and the number is expected to increase in the up and coming years.