User Interface Design Principles

User Interface Design Principles

Daniel Hall 09/02/2024
User Interface Design Principles

Designing is much more than just layout, organization, and even editing; to design is to impart value and meaning, to clarify, to simplify and clarify, to transform, to polish, to attract attention, to persuade, and even perhaps to entertain.

Paul Rand.

The Main Task is Clarity


Clarity is the first and most critical responsibility for every interface. To successfully assist individuals in achieving their goals, an interface must contain the following features:

  • To begin, it must be easily identifiable and have a clear function for the user.
  • Second, users must comprehend what they are dealing with through the interface.
  • Finally, the user interaction with the UI should be predictable. You can add some mystery or game components to the UI, but there should be no misunderstanding.

Clarity gives users confidence and a willingness to continue working with the interface. A hundred clear screens are better than one messy one. If you don’t understand interface design well enough, we recommend giving this task to the professionals from Dashboard Development.

The Key Purpose of Interfaces is Interaction

Interfaces exist so that people can interact with our world. Through the interface, we can clarify, illustrate, enable, show connections, bring people together or divide them, manage expectations, and provide access to services. The interface design process is not an Art.

Interfaces are not monuments to themselves. Interfaces perform specific tasks and their effectiveness is measurable.

However, they may extend beyond strictly practical uses. The finest interfaces are those that inspire, elicit emotions, surprise, and enrich our understanding of the world.

Maintain Attention at All Costs

We live in a world of distractions. Nowadays, it’s not even possible to read quietly – someone or something will always distract us, and draw our attention. Attention is a great value.

Don't clutter your app's sidebar with distracting images, remember the key purpose of the interface.

If a person is reading, let him finish reading first, and then show your advertisement (if necessary). Appreciate attention – this will not only please users but will also improve your results. If your main goal is for your app to be used, then attention is a necessary ingredient. Keep him at all costs.

Provide Users with a Sense of Control

A person feels most at ease when he is in control of himself and his surroundings. Poorly designed software deprives users of control, pushing them into unanticipated interactions, complicated procedures, and unpredictable outcomes.

Give users a sense of control by keeping them up to speed on the state of the system, demonstrating cause-and-effect links (if you do this, you will do that), and informing them of what to expect at each stage. Don't be scared to repeat obvious statements; obviousness is usually a relative notion.

Direct Control is the Best Option

The best interface is no interface. This is how we control physical objects in the real world – directly. However, since this is not always possible, and objects contain more and more information, we create interfaces to interact with them.

It's very easy to go overboard and add more layers to the interface than necessary: overloaded buttons, chrome, graphics, options, preferences, windows, attachments, and other junk. As a result, the user is forced to manage interface elements, instead of going to the main thing.

Strive for direct control – design the interface as natural as possible, as if it had not been touched by a human hand.

Ideally, the interface should be so inconspicuous that the user retains the feeling of direct control over the object of his attention.

One Screen – One Main Action


Each screen in our interface should be based on one action that is meaningful to the user. Such an interface is easier to learn and use, and it is also easier to supplement and expand (if necessary).

Screens that have two or more basic actions become quickly confusing.

Just as every article should be based on one strong thesis, every screen in our design should be based on one strong action – the reason for its existence.

Tell People the Logical Next Step

Few displays are initially planned as final versions. As a result, we must always think carefully about the following move. Imagine and develop the next interaction with the interface. Be receptive to user feedback. When you receive the desired action, don't leave them hanging; instead, direct users to the next step that will help them reach their goals.


An interface can be considered successful when people use it. Nobody needs a great chair if it's impossible to sit on. Therefore, designing a user-friendly interface can be compared to creating a comfortable chair. The interface should not only flatter your designer ego: but it should be used!

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Daniel Hall

Business Expert

Daniel Hall is an experienced digital marketer, author and world traveller. He spends a lot of his free time flipping through books and learning about a plethora of topics.

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