A comprehensive resource that explains the value of wireframes, how UX and UI come into play in web design and early applications, and how to wireframe software makes everything easier, faster, and more efficient.
Want to make your own wireframe? Try Adlivetech. It’s fast, easy, and completely free.
What are wireframes?
Initially, the term “wireframe” meant a visual representation of three-dimensional objects, such as those used in product design and development. It is now also used to describe 3D modeling in computer animation and in the design and development of 2D web pages and mobile applications.
In web design, a wireframe or wireframe diagram is a grayscale visual representation of the structure and functionality of a single webpage or mobile application screen. Wireframes are used at the beginning of the development process to establish the basic structure of a page before the visual design and content are added and can be created using paper, directly in HTML / CSS, or using software applications.
The purposes of wireframes
Wireframes replace the abstract nature of the site map, which is usually the first step in site development, with something more tangible and easier to understand. There are several interconnected purposes for wireframes.
Ensuring that the site or application is built on purpose. The clear view of the features with minimal creative influence allows stakeholders to focus on other aspects of the project. Wireframing sets expectations for how the features will be implemented, showing how the features will work, where they will be located, and how many benefits they will provide. A feature may be withdrawn because it does not fit within the objectives of your site.
Focusing on use. Wireframing provides an objective look at link names, ways to convert, ease of use, navigation, and placement of features. Wireframes help you identify defects in the architecture or features of your site and show you how well it is running from a user’s perspective.
Ability to grow content. If you know that your site will grow in the near future, your site must be able to cope with this growth with minimal impact on the architecture, usability, and design of the site. Wireframing can reveal these important opportunities for content growth and how to frame them.
Feedback and painless iteration. Instead of combining full functionality, appearance, and creative elements in one step, wireframes ensure that these considerations are taken separately. This allows stakeholders to provide feedback much earlier in the process. Creating wireframes using software makes the iterative process inherent in web design a lot less of a chore.
The value of wireframes for developing websites and applications
Wireframes place each participant in the development of the website on the same page. What does the same page look like? There are many aspects: the drawings are calibrated more carefully. The development team has a deeper understanding of what they are doing. Creating content becomes easier. You may need to hack, correct, or completely rebuild during the process – otherwise known as “scope download”. What is the final value in this? Save time and money.
UX, UI, and wireframe design
User experience design is a way to increase customer loyalty and satisfaction by improving usability and enjoyment in customer-site, application, and product interaction. The user interface design is closer to the graphic design, although the responsibilities are a bit more complex. In general, the design of the user experience comes before the design of the user interface. UX and UI tend to overlap and should overlap in the wireframe design process. Areas of interest include:
Information architecture and wireframes
As part of the overall process of website development and wireframing, Information Architecture (AI) refers to the placement and prioritization of information in a way that leads to future users’ understanding of a site or mobile application. There are four key elements to the World Wide Web Information Architecture.
Schemes and organizational structures: classification and structuring of information
- Labeling systems: information representation
- Navigation systems: movement through information
- Search systems: searching and finding information
Good IA begins with comprehensive business analysis to develop a content strategy for an overall structure, content, and design style based on the company’s goals. To confirm that the analysis and strategy are correct, wireframes and paper prototypes are an important first step. Testing prototypes and wireframes is the best way to get feedback from users at the beginning of the design process, which helps prevent costly redesigns once the site has been launched. Prototyping and wireframe testing also help you evaluate different models in terms of performance and user preferences to create the best overall product.
Types of wireframes
There are four different types of wireframes, from the simplest type (black and white or flat) to the most complex (almost simulating the real thing):
Basic wireframes. Also known as low-fidelity renderings, these are very simple page layouts, usually in black and white.
Annotated wireframes. They add a wide range of details to a basic frame. Annotations are short notes, usually on the side or bottom of a wireframe, that describe each item on the wireframe, usually separated by areas of content and functionality, and show (briefly) the reason and purpose of each item.
Wireframes user stream. When an annotation is not sufficient to show how a user of a site or application will logically move content from one page to another, more information may be required. These user stream wireframes can be static views of a fully interactive wireframe but can include a slide show or a collection of serial wireframes to display the main user stream or set of user streams.
High definition interactive wireframes. You can experience interactions (e.g., touch, click, and drag) within or between individual frames. Adding interactions before moving to full layouts or live prototyping saves design hours and developers. This variation of wireframes can only be done in presentation and graphic design, or in wireframing and prototyping software.
Diagramming is quick and easy with Adlivetech. Start a free trial today to start creating and collaborating.
How to design and create a simple framework
Now that we’ve looked at the basics of wireframes, let’s take a look at how to put them all together to design and create a simple wireframe.
- Think about the ultimate purpose of the website and design it with that goal in mind. Think about how the user will interact with the interface.
- Start with a simple, low-fidelity representation of the webpage, which is segmented into three parts: the header (the first thing users will see at the top of the page), the body of the webpage, and the footer, which usually contains less Important information.
- Then think about the navigation. Add buttons and links for users to visit the main sections of your site, including content areas, user search, and authentication.
- Write down the wireframe for clarity
Once you’ve reached this stage, you can share the wireframe with interested parties before moving on to the next step. You can draw the original wireframe by hand on paper or whiteboard, but once you’ve reached stage 4, you’ll probably use software to further develop the wireframe.
Want to learn more about creating your own wireframe?
Using wireframe software and tools to design web pages and applications
You can try to imagine the end result of a website or an application in your head, but it’s much easier when you prepare a wireframe in advance and you know what to do right before you start. Wireframe software and tools allow you to create design examples with flexibility and time-saving features. You can expand your ideas, see the big picture, and avoid mistakes along the way. Templates can make your ideas even easier to see, make adjustments, and solve and solve any problems.
Wireframe templates and examples
Wireframe templates are a critical necessity when you start designing a new webpage or application. There are free wireframe templates that you can find online. Most website and application design software also offer a wide variety of templates. Here are some examples of Adlivetech work templates to help you understand how wireframing can work:
Models and tools for models
Wireframes are a substitute for design, but a layout completes the visual details, such as colors, typography, and branding. While the layout shares the purpose of the wireframe to document and coordinate the team’s vision, it has the added benefit of its superior images, which make the layout more useful for decision-makers. In essence, the model adds a visual flair to the sketch placed in the wireframe.
How to choose wireframing applications and software tools
Wire framing software should make it easy to develop any of the four types of wireframes – basic, annotated, user-friendly, and interactive – fast and simple. Here are some things to think about before making a decision:
How “real” must it be? The design capability of some software is very simple and seems to be hand-drawn, while others are closer to that of a minimal prototype, with a more complete user experience and interface. What you choose depends on how finished the final product should look.
Is sharing a priority? Some products have the ability to export wireframes in a variety of formats, while others require anyone viewing the design to have the product installed on their computer. Users who want to share their design with a large number of people need a program that facilitates sharing for review, collaboration, and approval, such as online or cloud-based.
Which platform do you prefer? Users looking for team sharing and design capabilities on a variety of computers are likely to request an online or cloud-based product. There are some users working on a single device and there are companies that want models on local storage that want software that can be installed.
Do you need offline access? Browser-based products are strictly available through web browsers. Users with browser-based products may not be able to save the local design or work without internet access. Browser-based products tend to be lighter and more frequently updated, but may lose access offline as a result.
Why Adliveetch is the right choice for your online wireframing application
Adlivetech can be used in minutes by anyone from an engineer to a novice. Create an interactive demonstration of a website in minutes! No download is required. You can now create robust charts in the cloud through the browser. A license can be used on any computer or tablet.
Simplicity: drop-down menus, buttons, and general items will help you sketch a new concept or improve an old one. Hotspots allow you to mimic site navigation by moving from page to page, connecting to an external page, playing a video, and more.
Secure and reliable: Amazon Web Services’ enterprise-wide security protocol keeps your information safe. When you create charts in Lucidchart, your changes are continuously saved and stored in multiple locations. We’ll let you know even if connectivity issues prevent us from saving your latest unfinished version.
Interactive elements: Don’t just rely on a static framework. Instead, build an interactive layout that allows you to click buttons, watch videos, browse menus, and try other links.
Smooth collaboration: reduce development time by involving everyone in the process. Your customers, content producers, and programmers can easily discuss and provide feedback.
Rich features: customers will appreciate an interactive setting that demonstrates the user experience. Activate the demo mode to give your designers and customers a functional prototype of an application or website.
Publish and share: When you’re done with the wireframe, sharing is easy. Save it in a variety of image file formats, print it, or email it. You can even try posting it on social media or sharing it privately for feedback.
Wireframing is painless with Adlivetech. We have all the intuitive shapes, icons, and features to help you get started with wireframes and mobile, tablet, and desktop layouts. Try it today when you register for free!
Want to make your own wireframe? Try Adlivetech. It’s fast, easy.
Contact our team @ +91-9555-71-4422 here at Adlivetech.