While everyone’s taste is different, there are several universal principles that one successful web app embody. We’ve summed up for you into a simple list of critical success factors.
For web users today, being fast is not enough; you need to be faster than fast. If your web app is slow, most users will get frustrated and move on to your competitors. Applications must be designed with speed in mind, and this will help its utility become clearer. There are several ways to speed up your web apps in the market; also tools like Pingdom can help you keep track of your web app’s speed.
2. Users, Users, Users.
This is the most important feature of any website or web app, because a web app is nothing without its users. Unfortunately, a lot of businesses ignore the power of users and thus lead themselves to failure. You’ll be setting your app up for near certain failure if you don’t first consider to whom you’ll be marketing and what that market would like to see. As with any good marketing plan, define your audience, understand your niche and specialize to their needs. After all, if you can’t get people to use the app, you don’t have a good web app, no matter how good you think it is.
Therefore, to research user experiences is the crucial important step in building your web app, yet still the most neglected. It’s best and less expensive to start your project with a solid concept than to spend extra time and money redesigning later. When you develop an app, try using it for a week like a normal user and take notes on your experience. You may be surprised at what you find; a lot of times we’ll program something one way, and it’s not all that user-friendly or intuitive.
For web apps, simplicity is king —The layout needs to be “clean” with plenty of empty space and large fonts. In terms of screen flow, content should be presented first, with navigation placed at the bottom of each page. Having to scroll past navigation to get to the real meat of a web page is the bane of any mobile user’s existence.
4. Focus on What You Do
Build an application relating to your particular field, and stick to what you do best. If you’re a financial services company, build an app offering investment projection calculators is a great idea, but also offering weather forecast won’t be that smart. Stay focused on user needs and business goals, try not to solve everything. Users today are technology savvy: they know what they want and what they don’t want.
5. Design matters
Last but not least, appealing aesthetics and a design that works will bring your users closer. Good design increases the amount of trust a visitor has in your website and therefore in your business. Bad design sends them away in search of something more reliable. In fact, the design of your website impacts every single moment a user spends on a page. It could be the difference between a great user experience and a lousy one. Ultimately, it can drive or lose conversions.
Hopefully, this list will help you reconsider some decisions you have made or are about to make in developing a web app.
Keep in mind: the all time No.1 thing that makes a good web app is always the users. Those are the people that will help make your app thrive through improvement, enlist more people to use it, and hopefully make your web app a big hit.