Prototyping tools are a vital component for any digital design process. They will allow you to experiment with a variety of concepts quickly so you can collect feedback from customers, users, and other people in your organization. With the right prototyping tools, you can effectively simulate your designs while getting an idea of what your users will experience. Prototyping can also help you identify and fix any challenges you may run into during the development phase, and it is important that you are using the correct tools to do so.
There are a variety of prototypes programs and tools out there which allow you to achieve different levels of a finished prototype. The possibilities can seem endless, from a very basic black and white block prototype to a detailed and interactive version that allows users to click through the prototype. At GR Digital, our developers have a few favorite prototyping tools that are versatile and help move our concepts to digit products. Check out some of their features:
Webflow is a beautiful software platform that is a mix between prototyping, CMS, and a development platform. It has a ton of prototyping features and allows our team to go from a completed design, to a published site that is fully responsive all in a matter of days (instead of weeks or months of development). For sites that don’t need a custom web application, this is often a good choice.
Invision is a pure prototyping tool. There are no frills, such as design or drawing features, which allows the user to focus on simply prototyping their design. While the design tools are limited at best, Invision allows us to take a design in Sketch and convert it into a beautiful and interactive prototype, allowing us to get feedback from clients and users quickly and seamlessly.
If you need a quick tool to turn a couple of page layouts into an interactive prototype, Marvel is your best solution. It’s simple, but has all of the basics of a good prototyping tool. Most importantly, it supports common formats like PSD, PNG, GIF, and has silky smooth transitions and gestures to make it feel like a fully developed app.
Figma is one of the latest design and prototyping tools out there, and man is it powerful. It combines everything designers love, including prototyping and collaboration tools with helpful design features, ones that rival the likes of Sketch App. Figma is completely online, which means that our designers can use it on any device, anywhere in the world. Figma is also collaborative, meaning the user can get feedback from the rest of the team and the client. We love this feature because it allows our designers to work together on the same project in real time. Imagine Google Docs but for prototyping and design.
Other Notable Contenders:
Two other prototyping tools that deserve an honorable mention include:
- Adobe XD - A classic that has added a lot of new features to be more competitive
- Framer - This is a speciality prototyping tool just for Apple users
Remember, making sure you choose the right tool for the job is key. If you’re having trouble with the marketing or designing your latest project, don’t hesitate to contact our professionals to help you establish a plan for your digital design process.