Every UI/UX designer has a variety of tools and applications in their arsenal to create dynamic and engaging design components. While one program may offer certain features that are more impactful for designing specific elements, it might lack certain aspects you need – or want – to make your project perfect.
Whether you’re a professional UI/UX designer or have little-to-no experience working with the digital tools at your disposal, you can benefit from learning the advantages and disadvantages of the design tools listed in this article.
Before we dive into the top UI/UX design tools our designers use to develop wireframes, prototypes, and more for clients, let's talk about the significance of UI/UX.
Why is UI/UX important?
UI/UX design became significant in the 1990s when Don Norman, who was working for Apple, coined the term “user experience.” The focus began shifting from the product function to the way people visually percieved and interacted with their brand. Think about the prosperous position Apple is in now due to user experience!
As the demand grows for impressive user experience and interface design, UI/UX will become increasingly necessary for companies to focus on in the development process. Organizations can note the following reasons when discerning the importance of UI/UX in software development.
Good Design Sells
If your site or app lacks design appeal, you could be losing out on potential customers. Good web design helps you attract and retain customers through aesthetics and a user's journey. Beauty is attractive to consumers, and art has been known to captivate and convert them.
A User’s Need is Met
When a designer truly understands the needs of its userbase, they are able to cater their product or service to fulfill those of their target market. By enhancing the accessibility and usability of their offering, UI/UX designers can deliver a product in a beautiful, easy-to-use way.
Businesses Can Envision the Product
With design mocks, business owners can approve the blueprint of their application or website before proceeding to development. This saves both the business owner money and the developer time - altering the application or website design during the design phase is much more cost-efficient than making adjustments post-completion.
The Top Four Tools Recommended by Professional UI/UX Designers in 2019
Our UI/UX design team’s top four favorite tools to use at work include:
- Adobe XD
We’re sharing the pros and cons of each platform based on our designers’ experience working with the following design tools.
- The interface offers rapid wireframing and prototyping capabilities.
- Projects can be shared easily with team members, clients, developers, and more.
- The search function is a great feature to find what you need.
- Drag-and-drop features make designing a breeze.
- Designs can easily export to a PDF file.
- Designers can’t make precise high-fidelity mockups with Balsamiq.
- You’re unable to edit predefined icons. However, a user can upload their own.
If you’re looking for a UI tool that is perfect for wireframing, Sketch was created for you.
- Every element is a vector by default.
- Sketch is a precise tool for creating high-fidelity mockups.
- Autosaves the project you’re working on.
- CSS design rendering is possible.
- This tool is only available on the Mac, which keeps Windows users from operating the platform.
- Plugins must be downloaded for sophisticated designs.
Adobe XD is a design tool within the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite that developers can use to create prototypes for the web, iOS, and Android.
- Adobe XD works seamlessly with the Adobe Creative Cloud.
- It’s available for macOS and Windows users.
- There are many design features a UI/UX designer can take advantage of including drag-and-drop components, image masking, and content type recognition.
- It can import all Sketch mocks and make them editable.
- The sharing process takes only one click.
- No plugins are required.
- CSS code cannot be extracted.
- It can be difficult to share designs with team members and clients.
- Adobe XD relies on plugins to function.
- Tutorials are necessary for fully understanding how to use the design tool.
Used for prototyping, InVision prides itself on offering designers a way to quickly design prototypes.
- There isn’t a strong learning curve, so new users can figure out how to work with it quickly.
- The design tool is one of the best at sharing and collaboration.
- Version history is available if you want to go back to a previous stage in design.
- InVision integrates with JIRA and Slack.
- It’s completely free to use.
- Users can’t wireframe on this program as easily as others.
- Sharing a project with clients isn’t simple.
- There are no tools for typing and drawing, so you must use a different tool for those aspects.
The UI/UX Design Tool We Recommend
Upon reviewing four of the best UI/UX tools one can use in 2019, our in-house designers have determined which tool they recommend working with: Adobe XD.
Its capabilities for wireframing and high-fidelity mockups, as well as ways to simply share and collaborate with members of your team makes Adobe XD the frontrunner.
Our UI/UX designers have also acknowledged that anyone interested in these programs should try them out to interact with the features and get to know the programs themselves. Learning by engaging with the design tools will help you understand what you personally enjoy and dislike.
User experience and user interface is an essential aspect of software development. Without these elements of product design and development, your business could end up losing money. If you want to learn more, schedule a free UI/UX consultation with one of our professional designers today.