Introduction to Software To Create Wireframes
The starting point for the Folio3 App Design Agency in the USA. We will see why and what tools are available to make models and a prototype of your website or mobile application idea.
What is Wireframe?
The wireframe (or functional mockup) is a simplified graphic representation of your user interface that allows you to define the areas, the general organization of information, and all the elements that must be present in each page in a simple and striking way.
Why create wireframes?
First of all, wireframes save a lot of time when creating your web project. Why waste hours of work designing an interface that is too busy, useless, or poorly organized if it is to start all over the first time your customer returns?
By creating a mockup, you can already produce a “base” on which to evolve and ensure the conformity of your realization before getting started. It is, therefore, a great saving of time but also money for you and your customer.
The wireframe also allows you to organize your working time by planning it in advance: you will be able to know which pages will require more work or, conversely, which pages can be completed quickly.
Finally, the wireframe is a real canvas: simple, clean, without colors, it is a good way for you to organize the root of your application or your page, then to know where your creativity can be expressed without “doing it”. Too much “.
Who should create the wireframe? For who?
The wireframe is usually a group job. As part of a freelance designer receiving a website creation request from a company, it is first up to the client to specify his expectations (which medium, rather colorful or uncluttered, very informative, or rather objective conversions…). Then, it is up to the web designer to produce a first version of the model, to send it to the client, and to modify it according to his feedback.
Wireframing and the design of websites or mobile applications very often require the use of several areas of expertise: marketing, development, creation…
What information must appear on the model?
Try to make the document as synthetic as possible. No need to add worked and optimized texts simply indicate the location of a line or a text block.
The same goes for images; you can represent them by a simple gray rectangle. The wireframe does not aim to present a version of the site already worked on, but to represent the general organization of each page, element by element.
Don’t forget to add things like social media buttons, menu, search bar or call to action. Remember to highlight the navigation path of your future visits.
All you have to do is get started! Here are some solutions that will allow you to make wireframes easily.
Whimsical – Freemium
An online tool that simplifies the creation of wireframes and prototypes. The tool is well thought out and allows you to quickly render your project with smart features and a comprehensive library of components.
Pencil – Free
The pencil is 100% free open-source software with a large library of templates and basic elements for precise and professional rendering.
With simple and intuitive navigation, you can link your pages together, and build a wireframe perfect for representing your user’s navigation on the site or application.
Small flat, the tool has not been updated or has not seen any changes since 2013, which does not affect its proper functioning. Available on Mac, Windows, and Linux.
Wireframe.cc – Freemium
Wireframe.cc will allow you to create models in its image: impactful and refined. With very few features available, you’ll have to get to the point.
Its handling may seem a bit difficult, but this solution still allows you to have a professional result in a very short time. Teamwork is made easy by adding comments or sharing by URL. Available in the free version. However, you will need to switch to a paid version to export your work: count from 16 € per month.
MarvelApp – Freemium
MarvelApp is an online tool that lets you design wireframes and prototypes right in your browser. You can also synchronize your projects on Dropbox or share them with your collaborators. Free for one user and one project.
Moqups – Freemium
With its library of configurable elements and models, Moqups is an easy-to-use and very complete web application. Another advantage: Moqups are linked to Confluence and JIRA for teamwork.
This solution also allows you to organize your wireframes by linking them together. Moqups exists in a free version, but its functionalities are limited, in particular the export of drafts in PDF or jpg. For this, you will have to pay the basic version from 13 € per month.
Balsamic – Paying
Balsamic is one of the best graphic design Auckland known tools in the wireframing market. Easy to learn, it gives access to a large library of basic elements (call to action, a block of text, image, etc.) to move on your creation surface by drag-and-drop.
Very effective, it, therefore, gives a good overview of the desired end result. However, it is criticized for its a little too “drawing” aspect with slightly childish fonts which give an unprofessional rendering.
This app is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux with a 30-day free trial, and then starts at $ 9 per month for 2 concurrent projects.
Mockup Flow – Freemium
A suite of applications covering all the steps to create a site. From the creation of the sitemap to the wireframes until the site is online. Has a free offer for one project in each app. To get an unlimited number of projects, you will need to count on $ 19 per month.