5 Good Reasons for App Redesign

Keeping up with changes in the digital industry is a two-edged sword for mobile app designers. Major app redesigns often end with backlash and lost revenue – and not even the giants in their respective industries are immune to redesign fails. 

Snapchat’s 2017 app redesign disaster cost the company 5 million lost users and a 36% decrease in ad views and revenue. After six months, they rolled back on changes. In 2018, Instagram fell into the same trap by completely redesigning their app, which was followed by a massive user backlash. Eventually, they gave up on the changes. Some businesses never recover from bad app redesign apps.

It is not surprising if you are cautious or confused when it comes to shaking up things with your app. As mobile app developers, we have a lot of experience with clients who are unsure of how to give their app a new look. Here’s our list of legitimate signs that it is definitely time for app redesign.

1. Common customer requests

Encouraging people to review your app has multiple purposes. Reviews enable you to measure overall customer satisfaction, identify strong and weak spots in your application, and they are a great marketing tool for building social proof.

While you cannot meet every demand your customers have, after a while you should be able to analyze feedback and put some of it into action. A lot of negative reviews can be fixed with minor changes, but if a larger pattern emerges across several app functionalities, app redesign is a better solution.

Tracking customer feedback is particularly important for businesses which launched their app without doing extensive research into their target audience and market. Businesses which apply this approach often stack up minor changes that eventually result in unstable apps. After a while, this will also call for a total app redesign. 

2. Things could get simpler (and prettier)

User experience is a fluid process, and this fact often turns out to be a UX shortfall of businesses who don’t know when to stop when it comes to tweaking their app design (we’re looking at you, Facebook).

When it comes to mobile apps, your reasoning should be simple – can a certain action be done in fewer steps without confusing a user? If the answer is yes, you have a green light for a redesign.

One way to be sure is to use heatmaps and screen recordings (within the app or conducting user tests) to determine common problems in the way users are interacting with an app. Another is to focus on so-called “micro-conversions”

This means putting aside the big goals of the app (sign-ups, sales, etc.) and focusing on small, immediate goals within the app – using the search feature, reading or uploading content, verifying the account, adding friends, etc. Long story short, focus on micro-conversions enables you to understand whether the app does what you intended it to do. 

In mobile apps, design and looks are closely intertwined, so redesigning your user experience usually goes hand in hand with changes in your visual identity. Freshening up your logo, icons, and looks is a good option for apps that feel a bit outdated and need adjusting for new devices and platforms.

3. Your app has evolved

When you launched your app, you may have had a broad idea of what your potential customers need, and went on to use their feedback to fully shape your product along the way. Other businesses conduct in-depth research and have clearly defined buyer personas from the get-go.

In both cases, it is quite possible to start your mobile app with one business goal in mind and end up with a completely different one. In multiple feature apps, some features often end up prioritized by users, while others may be completely pushed aside. 

For example, you created an app that was originally intended to be a booking app. You added a feature like a comparison based on rating, prices, availability, etc. After a year, reports imply that few users use the app for booking – but plenty of them are using it to compare restaurants.

Similarly, your app may have attracted a new group of users – the ones you did not have in mind when you created an app. Sometimes, the initial app design cannot meet their needs. For example, the app design can be too complicated for older, less tech-savvy users.

Spontaneous evolution of the product is the strongest call for an app redesign. Basically, in this case, an extensive app redesign means you are adjusting your product to your customers’ needs and priorities.

App redesign may be a slightly greater challenge in cases of accommodating new user groups. If there are several distinct demographic groups among your target users, your app redesign will require you to find a common ground for their needs and preferences. 

4. Market has evolved

Industry and technology go forward and keeping an eye on your competitors is one way to ensure you maintain your hard-won competitive advantage.

App redesign prompted by developments in devices, platforms, and user habits is a no brainer. Any app that begins to look obsolete or unfunctional in the new environment is a fertile ground for a redesign.

On the other hand,  making changes based on your competitors’ moves can be a slippery slope. Merely copying their features can hardly be called an app redesign. Taking your competitors’ features, adjusting and simplifying them based on your users’ needs is an important redesign task for every app. 

5. Your goals have evolved

We talked about an app redesign when your customers’ needs change. In this case, it is not their needs that have changed – it’s yours. Many apps try to assert their new business goals through redesigns and new features. Sometimes, users go with it, and other times, they switch to competitors because they feel what they signed up for is no longer there. 

So what is the middle ground? Before you start planning a redesign haul, make sure you conduct serious market research. If your new business goal is motivated by innovation, current trends or solid market forecast, it is a good reason to consider an app redesign. However, make sure that there is a market demand for this revamped app you have in mind. Also, conduct research among your customers to see how receptive they would be to this change.

In general, the app redesign should assert changes spontaneously. Your customer base’s favorite features should remain at the center of user interface and experience.

Conclusion

A solid redesign requires serious preparation. It takes time, hard work, and significant investment, so your app redesign should not be a change for the sake of a change. Every new line and app feature should be meaningful and serve a concrete goal.

You need an experienced team that will safely guide your app redesign from idea to solution. With dozens of products and apps under our belt, our developers at Gomeeki have seen and done it all – from the simplest apps to end-to-end strategies and executions for some of the most intricate and data-intensive solutions in the market.

All you need to do is give us a call – we will take it from there and give your app a new life. 

 

“Smartphones and tablets are transforming how and where we consume news and information. The ABC must meet the challenge of delivering content to the audience at a time they want and on the device and format they prefer.”

Mark ScottManaging Director, ABC

The Broncos evaluated numerous Fan Engagement solutions over recent years and Gomeeki's passionate & experienced team, combined with their innovative FanTribe platform was the only solution that we believe will deliver a winning mobile experience for our fans.

Terry ReaderChief Commercial Officer, Brisbane Broncos NRL

“Health Partners selected Gomeeki on the basis that the services provided are far more than just an app development house. The relationship to date has delivered Health Partners the benefit of a much deeper insight into digital strategy, the power of Gomeeki’s Ubiquity platform and a disciplined, structured development process. As a customer, we have been delighted with the quality and outcomes to date.

Colin LangmeadCIO- Health Partners

 

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