The Guide to Design Consistency: Best Practices for UI and UX Designers

What exactly is design consistency?

Consistency is what ties UI elements together with distinguishable and predictable actions, which is key for a great product experience. A way to simplify things is to think of it as a commitment that you make to your users (“whenever you see the light gray button in the pop-up, you can assume that it will cancel and the pop-up will close”) so that they can easily interact with your product.

As they become more acquainted, and become regular users, they begin to trust the product more and more, which is a reflection of the consistent design. To provide users with a consistent UI, here’s five best practices I’ve found useful for everyday design.

1. User-focused design research

Nothing is more important for a consistent experience than quality research.

This should not be underestimated or hurried. Time and budget are always a necessary consideration in product design. Without either of these, a product would never ship. Although they are important to the process, it is important not to lose sight of who actually uses the product. Keep your users top of mind and don’t overlook research in the beginning stages of product planning.

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