Splash screens are the perfect introduction to a dynamic digital experience on mobile devices. They bring a whole new essence to mobile web designs, using animated graphics that make user interaction on the internet all the more exciting. In the early days, splash screens were used only as an introduction graphic or flash animation by web designers. But now with smarter technological innovation and wider screen layouts, modern splash screen pages play a prominent digital marketing tool in enticing viewers and reinforcing a stronger brand image.
Importance of Splash Screens in App Design Layouts
The rapid rise in the number of mobile device ownerships has made applications a ubiquitous part of user interaction. Think of your smartphone. Can you possibly do anything on it without an application (other than sending texts or making a call)? No.
Mobile device applications have changed the way we communicate, shop, engage or even conduct an online search. It has changed our daily lifestyle routine patterns. Marketing executives have been quick enough to observe this change in practice and integrate it in their brand building strategy and mobile app design is a priority that many follow. That is why it is hard to trace out any online business today that is not using a mobile application in their brand promotion.
Mobile application technology is evolving fast and so are its designs and layout features. In the digital marketing world, where users can find so many apps of the same kind, performance and quality in mobile apps matter the most. When you have both, you give your users a better brand experience. It is keeping this user centric approach in app development, the article will now focus on splash screens and its importance in mobile marketing.
Role of Splash Screens in Mobile App Marketing
Branding is all about creating first impressions that result in positive conversions.
The role of mobile splash screens is as important as that of a website home page. It is basically the first introduction page that is displayed when one opens an app. So, how you design your app’s splash screen page matters a lot. A dull and boring splash screen page can turn out to be less appealing to the user and can cause one to easily ignore even a great app. Designers also need to make sure that their splash screens are not heavily packed with elements that can lower down the loading speed of the app. This can again give a mobile device owner bad user experience, which is harmful for an app promotion.
However, looking beyond the design part, you may realize that the splash screen is more than just visual branding. Speaking of which, they are basically page load spinners that reassures a user that a desired action has been noted down and is in the process of delivering an effect. Load times are very annoying especially when it comes down to application download on mobile devices. With a Splash Screen page, one can mask the loading process in the background while giving users a smooth interactive feel that continues until the app is ready to be used.
It syncs with the internet every time an app is loaded, to get more data records and drive better customer engagement.
Launch Screens – The Modern Day Splash Screens
In World Wide Web, nothing stays permanent. It is an ever evolving platform where existing business trends and strategies are frequently replaced by more advanced ones.
This is similar with Splash Screens as well. The modern day Splash Screens are known as Launch Screens and they are popular for giving an app a user first experience on mobile devices. Launch Screens display images are designed to give users the impression of a seamless transition. It is also known to provide apps with a momentary brand exposure that frees the user interaction and shifts the focus towards the content.
Launch screens help to make branding better and are different from traditional splash screens. They help to improve brand recognition by taking advantage of the loading speed and other elements. There are two types of launch screens that you will find –
– A placeholder ID
– Branded launch screens
You can refer to Google Guidelines if you want to learn more about Launch Screens.
But coming back to the point, how a splash screen is designed will always impact the on-screen user experience of a mobile app. So if you are currently working on the splash screen of a new mobile app project build-up, make sure you have got some of these strategies already implemented in your design.
Designing an Optimized Splash Screen Resolution for Mobile Apps
Using the Right Size
Splash screens should be created according to the screen resolution of a device. Therefore, one splash screen can come with different screen resolutions. For instance, the screen resolution for iPhone 5 is 640 X 1136 px and it’s not the same for iPhone 4, which will have a screen resolution of 640 X 960 px.
iPhone 6 (2x): Portrait: 750x1334px, Landscape: 1334x750px
iPhone 6 Plus (3x): Portrait: 1242x2208px, Landscape: 2208x1242px
This gets even more complicated when you think about Android devices that are available in so many different screen sizes. You cannot embed dozens of splash screens in an app to handle all the resolutions of different smartphone devices. That’s impossible and crazy. Instead, you can create three separate splash screen sizes – high res, medium res and small res so that when someone opens an app, the one that is closest to the screen size will get pulled out accordingly.
Keeping it Simple
Do not use too many graphical elements and make your splash screen heavy. This will affect the user experience of your app. That is why; when you design a splash screen for your mobile app, focus on the center of the screen where all the components like your brand name, motto and logo should be put.
Leave the edges of your splash screen free. This makes it easier for a designer to crop down the splash screen image to fit it according to different screen sizes.
Showing words of Reassurances
When a mobile app is launched, a lot of things can happen in the background. An app may need some time to upload or download data that will be then put to use. It can also need time inorder to correctly boot a new session or restore an old one. The total time taken to boot an app can also vary depending on the bandwidth connection and phone’s processor. However, when this happens, the phone will appear to frozen. Splash screens are actually still images and hence, it will seem as if you are stuck. The only thing that you have got to do then is to wait for the loading to get complete. This can cause a sense of panic or uneasiness in the user’s mind and can also lead to app abandonment.
A splash screen must therefore make sure to send some reassurances that will make the app user feel at ease. These are small assurances that inform a user about an app progress and how long will it take for the process to get complete before the user can use its functionalities.
Focusing on a Unique Icon Shape
The icons on your splash screens must be designed using unique feature ingredients and color shades.
Logos and icons are two different things. While a logo is a symbol that represents a particular brand, icons are visual descriptors that explain what a brand is trying to promote.
Icons are generally use mobile apps and are a key element in the UI/UX interface of a mobile app. They are used in different sizes for different purposes. They can be seen large in the App store and can get smaller on the home screen. When you design an icon for the splash screen, make sure that the resolution is good enough to bear a resize.
Splash screens don’t suck! Rather they have multipurpose uses today that are capable of making a mobile app or a website both interactive and engaging. They can break the tediousness of the digital architecture with their compelling graphics and cool color palettes and that is what generally matter the most when you are out there to motivate human minds and generate emotional actions amidst all the stiff competitions that characterize the digital world.