5 UX Tips to Enhance Forms for Mobile Applications

Kenneth Brant 2017-02-22 12:00:00

The whole world has gone digital. Offices have gone paperless, companies are utilizing ecommerce and websites aren't even bothering with physical documents. Not only has the entire planet gone digital, it has also gone mobile, an important development in the marketplace.

What do you do then with forms? Well, you optimize your forms for mobile applications.

At first, it may seem like a difficult transition, but within time you'll realize that your business could never live without forms for apps. This makes it easier to accumulate data, organize client profiles and adapt to the changing trends in the market - who likes pen and paper anymore?

You just need the right technology, know-how and strategies to make your forms ready to be utilized for smartphones, tablets, phablets and a wide array of mobile devices today, and tomorrow. Who knows what the future has in store?

Here are five user experience tips to enhance forms for mobile applications:

Only Add Important Details

Whether they are sitting inside of the office or in the comfort of their own home, the ultimate objective of any form is to be as quick as possible, even more so when it comes to mobile forms. And the best way to accomplish this is to only add the most essential and important details.

Name, email, telephone number, address and other pertinent details are all what matter. If it isn't relevant to what you need then it shouldn't be added. Or, if you must add these details then be sure to incorporate skip patterns into the design of the form. Learn more about the essential features of a mobile app with the resources at the ProntoForms website.

Top-Aligned Labels & Fields Are Essential

If you want to frustrate the user then by all means ignore top-aligned labels and fields. This will stretch out the form and make it harder for anyone trying to read the form. Indeed, by utilizing top-aligned labels and fields you can ensure that the form is crisp, pristine and easy-to-use.

Vertical vs. Horizontal: The War Doesn't End

Let us be frank: when you use your smartphone, do you use it vertical or horizontal? The logical answer is that you primarily play with the mobile device vertically, except when you watch YouTube clips, stream Netflix television shows or watch movies on Amazon then you flip it horizontally.

Well, when it comes to the forms, most people will use it vertically. Therefore, you must prepare for this and ensure that the forms have been designed for vertical purposes.

Why Not Use Single Input Entries?

Here is a reasonable question: why don't you use single input entries for your forms for apps?

This is when you have, for instance, your name on one entry as opposed to three (first, middle and last names). By having single input entries, you can help make the process move along a lot faster. If someone has to keep skipping to the next input to fill in their name then they know they are in this thing for a long period of time. See more examples of input field design examples with this Medium article by Saijo George.

Allow Users to Track Their Progress

Sometimes forms can be long, sometimes forms can be short. Whatever the case, you should certainly include a progress bar in your forms. This will help ensure that individuals can monitor their progress thus far, which is something that will prevent users from getting too frustrated and then decide to abandon the form altogether.

If they know that they are 65 percent done then they will continue to the end.

When was the last time you sat inside of an office and filled something in on paper? It is safe to say that two-thirds of the time you're completing a form on a smartphone or tablet.

These are trends that definitely encourage offices, businesses and organizations to adopt mobile devices, applications and optimized forms. Rather than relying on the antiquated pen and paper, you can instead adapt to the time and optimize your forms for mobile devices and apps.

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