User Interface design or UI design focuses on predicting what users need to do on an app or software. The UI designer then ensures the interface has all the elements that make it easy for users to carry out those actions.
UI design covers how users interact with an app or software interface; e.g., how does the user get from one screen to the next? UI design ensures the user has quick and straightforward access to the content they are looking for.
As a beginner to User Interface design, one essential thing to do is get familiar with the industry’s tools of the trade. These tools are platforms, software, programs or apps to help you achieve your design goals.
We will provide you with a list of seven best tools to help you understand UI design faster and better. We will also let you know about the essential features to look out for when selecting a UI design tool.
7 Best Tools to Help You Understand UI Design
Check out our seven most-loved UI design tools to help you understand and execute your UI designs.
Figma is a browser-based platform allowing UI designers to compose and design interfaces at a fast rate. It is helpful for sketching, wireframing, managing design systems, and even prototyping.
Figma allows you to connect the UI elements of your designs effortlessly. You can choose different interactions and animations between frames and it allows you to customize every interaction with simple gestures such as clicking, hovering, and swiping.
With Figma, you can use nested artboards to create flexible and unique UI designs as you wish. In addition, the software allows you to have your users test out your designs and collect their feedback before you move the design to the testing phase.
Figma works well on most browsers such as Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, etc.
On the downside, Figma has limited vector tools and no desktop app. But other than that, Figma is a great UI design tool.
If you are a big fan of Adobe, then you will love Adobe XD. Adobe XD was launched in 2016, and it has become one of the best UI design tools in the industry; it fulfills the industry’s standards.
Adobe XD is software that was “made for designers by designers.” You can design your projects like you always imagined. The app allows you to wireframe, animate, collaborate, prototype, and many more, all in one place.
Adobe XD is a vector-based tool that is versatile in that it offers you a host of features to help with the designing process. If you are not so familiar with the Adobe family, the team put together a video tutorial on using Adobe XD, making the app beginner-friendly.
Sketch is a UI design tool with an intuitive interface and intuitive features. It allows you to stay focused on creating amazing things, ranging from pixel-perfect icons to possibly your next big product.
Sketch has tools that will help your finished design to shine. Additionally, it is perfect for wireframing and prototyping and allows you to resize your drawings or images without losing any quality or sharpness.
You can customize your workflow to your preference – Sketch provides hundreds of plugins, assistants, and integrations that allow you to do anything you wish, like animating interactions or making your designs accessible.
The Sketch software is available only for MacOS. You get a 30-day free trial, but when you pay for it once and you can use it for as long as you want.
InVision is one of the best digital product design platforms that powers the world’s best user experiences. It allows you to transform your ideas into reality in one unified platform.
This tool is a powerful design system allowing users to work smarter, faster, and more in sync. You can either decide to design from scratch with a blank canvas or use InVision’s pre-built templates.
You can link InVision’s Freehand tool to a real-life whiteboard. The freehand tool comes with easy-to-use digital elements that are handy during the design process. This tool is beneficial for prototyping, design system management, and code inspection.
Additionally, this tool allows you to create rich and interactive prototypes – you can also collect input and provide detailed specifications that will help you keep your builds on track.
Lastly, InVision works well with other design tools and collaborations like Slack, Photoshop, Sketch, etc.
Maze is a UI design tool that provides designers with rapid and remote testing. With Maze, you can test prototypes or copies at a fast rate. You can also use it to round up user feedback as it will help you create better user experiences.
Maze drastically reduces the amount of time you need to gather user insights. You can instantly act on your results and easily create a maze for any project you have, either usability tests or user surveys.
This tool allows you to test anywhere and at any time. In addition to being able to carry tests easily, Maze allows you to learn UI design quickly.
If you’re interested in the tool, Maze’s UI design guide walks you through the whole UI design process. It makes the relatively complex process more effortless.
Maze offers free trials and paid packages.
Flinto is a Mac software that top UI designers worldwide use to create an interactive and animated prototype of their app designs. This tool offers several features that you need to bring your designs to life.
Flinto’s Transition Designer feature allows you to design animated transitions between your screens in the app. Also, you can navigate your prototype using gestures like taps, swipes, scrolls, and even 3D touch.
Another feature of the Flinto is the Behavior Designer. This feature allows the designer to create micro-interactions within your screens. In addition, the app allows you to design with advanced vector drawing tools.
Flinto is easy to learn with its extensive documentation, active community, and over 100 tutorial videos to walk beginners through the process. Lastly, it is a straightforward process to import your designs directly from Sketch and Figma.
With Balsamiq, anyone, both professionals and beginners, can design great desktop software. As of 2008, when it was established, the Balsamiq team has had the mission of ridding the world of bad user interfaces.
Balsamiq Wireframes is one of the fastest and most focused low-fidelity wireframing tools in the UI design industry. It has a user-friendly interface that works quickly and is easy to use.
Even if you are new to wireframing, the build of the Balsamiq design tool makes it easy for you to jump right in and begin with your designs.
With this UI design tool, you can quickly and easily develop structures and layouts for your design. In addition, the drag-and-drop elements of this design tool make life easier for designers to execute their projects.
Balsamiq is available on Windows, MacOS, and the web. Although there is no free version, you can try it for a 30-day free trial.
How to Choose the Best UI Design Tool
The UI tool you decide to use for your project can determine the success or failure. Your interface is what helps users get the most out of your app, website, or software.
It would be best to look out for these tips in choosing a UI design tool for a design project.
Consider the Project at Hand
When deciding on what tool to use, you must consider the project you need the UI design tool for. For instance, you might not be able to use some design tools for a large-scale project. You, therefore, need to use a UI design tool compatible with your project.
You also need to consider the format of the design tool carefully. How does its result look? Do you like the design? Does it meet your requirements? After answering questions like these, you should decide on your chosen UI design tool.
The tool you want to choose must adapt to the operating systems you and your users intend to use. This means whatever operating system is to be used must be compatible with your UI tool.
Good Assistance and Support
Ensure the design tool you decide on provides you with round-the-clock assistance if you need help at any point. For example, the UI tool should walk you through the process in a situation where you have questions.
Openness to Integrations
Remember that, when designing a user interface, using multiple tools is expected. Therefore, the UI tool you choose must work with other tools without losing its efficiency and effectiveness.
Make sure that out of the many tools in the industry, you choose the one that will perfectly match your project’s needs.
We’ve highlighted ten of the very best to help you understand UI design more effectively.
Sticking to this list of UI design tools is sure to sharpen your design skills. Select your preferred program or software and dive into the wonderful world of UI design.