A wireframe tool majorly helps web developers and web designers to a great extent, by designing an initial framework of the web page, without any of the UI elements, like icons, fonts, and logos. It depicts using a diagram, the navigable components in a website, without making use of graphics or style elements so that a comprehensible structural and functional outline of the design can be presented.
Often, UX designers make use of wireframe tools to assess the flow of information and the operation of the website before taking up the creative look for the outlined website.
A wireframe tool enables a user to prioritize while placing the components on a webpage. Another objective of a wireframe tool is to give a comprehensible and intuitive alternative to the website design.
Therefore, a wireframe is crucial to lay out what the user experience (UX) would be like for the end-user, which includes the positioning of the elements on the screen, in relation to one another, what will the user see at first and how will the design engage the visitor across the web page, where would they find common features like help/ contact us, or an options menu.
Wireframing Features & Capabilities
Wireframing applications can include some of the features below:
A library of UI modules with widely used elements.
A drag-and-drop software model.
Templates for wireframes.
Charts with diagrams and flows.
Characteristics for sharing.
Features for collaboration such as feedback and threading.
Command of versions.
Integration of widely used methods for collaboration.
Features of an effective Wireframe Tool
Among the comprehensive tools available, knowledge of the following critical factors that define a high-grade tool would help you choose among them:
Easy Navigation: This is an essential prerequisite on every website. Figuring out the functions of every feature would be time-consuming, hence, the tool chosen should be as easy as you would want your website to be. Users prefer using software with a compact interface and a logical hierarchy, which enables them to locate the required link in a couple of seconds.
Up-to-the-minute software: This is an integral requirement in website designing. A wireframe tool that has not been updated for a long time will hinder your website and keep it outdated. The absence of innovations like communication facilities, integration plugins, and pre-loaded UI kits, etc, will keep the website from being user-friendly.
UI kits: The user interface plays a trivial role in building a wireframe, but not while constructing a website. The designing components impact the visitor’s choice of whether to remain or leave the web page. Thus, a tool that is equipped with noteworthy UI libraries filled with pre-loaded templates should be chosen, as it would help you create a striking interface.
The ability to test: This is the fundamental feature, the exclusion of which would make a website unusable. A good wireframe tool offers the ability to check the web page of every web browser and platform. This would help your website adapt to the requirements of the majority of the commonly used devices, whether it is an iOS device, an Android device, a Windows PC, or any other device.
Benefits of using Wireframing Tools
Wireframing tools enable UX or web designers to effortlessly visualize the framework of a website or a mobile application even before its construction begins. It also helps them demonstrate their concepts along with their applicability, build consensus, get approvals, and go on to prototypes in a faster and easier manner.
Constructing a website using CSS and HTML demands a lot of time and effort, along with several other challenges along the way. Wireframe tools make this procedure simpler, quicker and even more transparent. Following are the reasons why opting for wireframe tools is a wiser thing to do:
Wireframe tools help in creating a responsive website. A web page should be easily accessible from all platforms and devices. Using these tools can help the developers know whether the website fully responds to the smaller screen sizes. The features of every device should also be considered and the web page should be customized to each of them.
Wireframing tools help in making the website design clearer, as they are used in defining the principal features of the proposed website, which would include the size of elements, their placement, the arrangement of the content, along with the prime motive of the web page. Also, wireframe tools help avoid misunderstandings between a developer and the client, while discussing the development of the website.
Wireframe tools make usability a prime concern since they are devoid of any design elements. Although, contemporary user interface (UI) wireframe tools offer a lot of design solutions, the majority of which only play a trivial role. This is done to allow developers to pay more attention to the operations of the website. Wireframe tools help in explaining the bugs in the architecture, navigation or functionality of the web page. Fixing these bugs at an early stage is much easier and can improve user experience (UX) to a great extent.
10 Best Wireframe Tools
Choosing from among the various options of wireframe tools depends on multiple factors, which include functionality, supported platforms, price, etc, which are elucidated alongside the ten best wireframe tools for 2020:
This platform is used in designing a wireframe for mobile and web applications. An advantage of these platforms is that they can be operated anywhere. They also enable you to build prototypes and diagrams.
It supports Android, iOS, Cloud, Windows, and macOS systems.
It has several prevalent icon-sets accessible for use.
It has a plethora of readily available font options.
InVision is a cloud-based solution for a mobile application or a website to create a wireframe. It is considered to be the perfect choice for designs with a high degree of precision. It also offers important tools and attributes for prototyping that allow a user to build a fully functional prototype.
It supports platforms such as Android, Web, and iOS.
You can create a clickable model.
InVision helps you create a prototype from the beginning in a fast and simple manner.
It allows for smoother cooperation. One can effortlessly share the link with the other architects and can receive prompt feedback.
The free trial model limits the development of just one dynamic design.
Fluid UI is a prototyping tool for the browser.
Three paid plans are provided, where you can go for one plan, based on your requirements.
It is fully compatible with iOS and Android.
The wireframe can be tested with any device.
Wireframe comes with more than two thousand inherent elements to opt for.
Skype chat and video calling features can be used to receive user assessment.
You get the liberty to utilize transitions and animations in your wireframes.
It has an exclusive characteristic that allows a user to communicate with the UI along with different screens.
Fluid UI comes with a complimentary plan and it consists of only 1 project.
A maximum of 10 pages is allowed to be created.
It does not allow you to upload.
There are no video presentations.
It doesn’t give the provision for comments and user assessments.
Wireframe.cc is an easy and efficient wireframe tool. The sleek layout, like other wireframe tools, does not hold many icons and toolbars and this is a major plus. This gives you the freedom to explain your thoughts as fresh as they come to your mind.
Wireframe.cc provides you the advantage to draw whatever you want with the help of a mouse. Just drag your mouse across the canvas and construct your website.
You will be provided with numerous stencils to select from.
It consists of elegant and simple features that do not include any difficult handling.
They are fully able to yield a great result.
Each wireframe you save is provided with a URL that you can share further, and this is only provided with a paid version.
It comes with a free trial lasting seven days.
The free version does not allow you to create a user account.
In the free version, every wireframe designed will be public by default.
It allows you to design a single-page wireframe only.
Axure RP is an important tool for the creation of an interactive model and fixed wireframe. It’s been around for over a decade now. It is a good source to assess web or mobile applications. When you have such a brilliant prototyping tool, then the capability of the product is completely ensured.
It supports Windows as well as macOS.
The components can be dragged and dropped from the specified base library.
It provides you the freedom to check the prototype on the mobile devices, although, it is problematic with device compatibility.
It is also used to model highly reliable prototypes so that a realistic test can verify the final result.
It gives a considerable amount of intricacy for the prototype.
It comes with three paid plans to select from.
Axure RP offers a free trial of 30 days and three other payable versions.
Which wireframe software should be used on the website? After going through all of the wireframe tools, this is a question that will come in your mind. All the wireframe tools are distinct and highly functional, in some way or the other. When it comes to choosing a tool for your website, it depends on your specifications.
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