User Interface design is not all about graphic design but is about presenting the user with the right tools to accomplish their goals. Therefore it is important to balance aesthetics with usability and ensure that UI is used to heighten UX. This is where design patterns come in, design patterns provide design solutions for effective layout design and can increase usability within a design.
What are design patterns?
Design patterns are common design solutions that are used throughout a variety of interfaces, they are quite common to users and due to this they intuitively know how to navigate an interface.
Examples of design patterns
Tabs are an example of skeuomorphism (The design of something that represents something in the real world e.g tabs represent physical tabs used in physical filing systems). Through the use of skeuomorphism and the mass use of tabs across most interfaces this design pattern allows users to navigate with ease and without confusion therefore aiding to a successful interface design.
Menus are another example of visual design patterns, they are used to organise information and present information clearly to the user. Dropdown menus can be used to create hierarchal organisation whilst drawer menus save space and can be used to create clean and simple designs. Hamburger menus are most commonly used in app design or responsive design for tablets and phones, they save space and declutter the interface for the user.
Search bars are a nice feature to include in a header or a nav bar as they allow users to search what they are looking for without navigating their way all through the interface. Search bars with dropdown options are useful shortcuts, they shorten the users path and saves the user time therefore creating a better user experience.
Another design pattern that creates shortcuts for the user are big footers, this pattern is used quite commonly throughout interfaces and is used to hold links to important pages, therefore can shorten the users path to their destination.
Carousels are quite common when a user needs to browse through lots of options. Carousels can be seen on portfolio websites and are also quite common on online stores to create look books or advertise multiple products at once.
Most important idea from this pod
User design patterns are good solutions for design problems due to the fact that they are proven to work and the users can intuitively navigate the interface when patterns are used.