Web Application Design: Key Elements, Challenges and Examples of Modern Web App UI Design

Published On: May 24, 2021
Last Updated: June 20, 2022

Web applications have become a thing of the present.

Various companies worldwide have shifted their websites to web apps because they offer better benefits.

Moreover, people worldwide have accepted web applications with open arms.

Hence, if you have also found one of the excellent web app ideas and are planning to launch your business, one of the crucial things you should focus upon is web application design.

Moreover, delivering the best experience through design is a need of an hour to become successful online.

Now, if you are wondering about web application design and things encircling around it, then you have reached the correct place.

We have been working in the web application design & development field for a long time; hence, we know what is required to design a web application.

Here, in this blog, we will first walk you through the basics of web application design. After this, we will walk you through the benefits, elements, and challenges of web application UI design.

Without further ado, let’s start:

Let’s look at all of these things in detail.

What is Web Application Design?

Web application design is one of the crucial stages for developing a web application. It mainly refers to the overall appearance of the web application.

Web application design consists of two essential components: User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX). While working on this you must ensure that you follow the fundamental principles of designing. Let us look at them in detail.

What is UI in Web Application Design?

It is the part with which users interact when using a web application. The primary purpose of the designers is to create a user-friendly & attractive interface. For the same, they look after the fonts, buttons, colors, navigation, etc.

What is UX in Web Application Design?

User experience is how a user feels when interacting with the web application. It requires a combination of critical analysis and logic to know how a user interacts with different services or products in a web application.

To provide an effective user experience, a designer needs to look after usability, design, navigation, and impression.

You need to give proper importance to web app design because it speeds up your work in the stages ahead.

Now the question arises, how to design a web application? In order to create an attractive design for your web application, you need to follow key elements of web application UI design.

Before that, we will walk you through the benefits of having a beautiful web app design.

What are the Benefits of Good Web App UI Design?

Here are some of the advantages of having an attractive UI design for web applications:

Creates a Strong First Impression

The design of your web application is the first thing a user looks at when they open it. Hence, an attractive web app UI design helps you establish a good impression of your business in the eyes of the potential audience.

Better Google Rankings

A modern and professional web app UI design helps you to rank faster in the leading search engines like Google & Bing.

Minimize Your Bounce Rate

Good web application design helps you to gain more visitors every day. Further, you have a better opportunity to keep users hooked and let them explore your business.

Brand Consistency

Branding is essential to build trustworthiness about your business in the audience. By creating a good web application UI design, you can share your brand story well. Hence, more people will be able to connect with your products or services.

Boosts Revenue

A good web application UI design leads you to better conversion rates and ultimately boosts the revenue of your web application.

Improved User Experience

User experience plays a vital role in any web application. By creating a good UI design, you provide a better experience to the users.

Key Elements of Web Application UI Design

Here is the list of some of the core elements of modern web application design. By considering all these elements, you can have an attractive UI design for web applications.

So, let’s discuss them in detail:

User Interface Facilitates Interaction

User Interface includes all the things that you watch on the screen. It consists of the smallest of elements like icons to big images used in a web application.

Based on the requirement of the web application, you need to include various UI elements. Here we will walk you through some of the primary components of the UI design.

Keep it Simple: Whether you have a simple or a highly complex idea, you should represent it most straightforwardly in your web application.

All of your users should be able to understand things effectively. It is one of the most well-known UI design principles to consider for all types of web applications.

Offer Clarity for Each Element: Your user interface should be easily understandable by the target audience.

The audience shouldn’t have to make any effort to know about the buttons, language, flow, etc., of your web app. An effective way to handle all the things is to have a new page for every action.

Familiarity: Familiarity means when someone has knowledge of a particular thing. If someone is visiting your web application for the first time, they should be able to relate its elements with their previous experiences.

For example, an “<-” icon should indicate going back to the last step. By keeping familiar elements for users, you reduce their learning curve, increase user retention, enhance usage speed, and get other advantages.

Simple Navigation: Navigation is yet another crucial thing in the user interface of a web application. All the users should easily be able to navigate from one part to another without any hindrance.

To provide effective navigation in your web app, you can integrate a top menu, sidebar, sub-navigation, and footer. Moreover, by delivering flawless navigation, you offer an effective UX.


Responsive: A web app should be completely responsive on various devices such as smartphones, tablets, desktops, etc. In simple words, it should adapt to the screen sizes of the devices along with delivering better usability and experience to the users.


Consistency: UI Elements of the web application should remain consistent right from the first page to the last page.

A consistent design helps users to identify all the patterns in the web app. Hence, they can get all assumptions about the UI correct and use the web app smoothly.

Aesthetics: An aesthetic user interface leaves a good impression of your brand among the audience. Also, the users would connect well with your business and spend more time on the web application.

To create an aesthetic UI, one should pay attention to the fonts, icons, colors, buttons, menus, etc.

Efficiency Affects Performance: Efficiency denotes a level of performance that utilizes fewer inputs and provides the highest output.

A web application should integrate better shortcuts, proper flow from one screen to another, and effective transitions. These things enhance the productivity of the users and help them achieve more with minimal time and effort.

Offers Better Compatibility Across Different Browsers: A web application should look and perform similarly on different screen sizes, operating systems, and browsers.

Across Different Browsers

Offer Instant Feedback for User’s Actions: Most users don’t like to stay long on a web application if it doesn’t provide feedback.

Provide users feedback whenever they perform any action on your web application. For example, you can show users a specific icon for every action they perform.

Besides this, you should forgive users for several mistakes. For instance, if a user deletes a file, you should offer an option to undo the action and get the file back.

Typography Impacts Readability

Typography is a way of organizing letters and text to make the complete copy attractive and clear to the user.

Well-executed typography helps to increase readability and sales. Also, it shows professionalism in your business. Other than this, it benefits an online business in various ways.

Typography Impacts Readability

To inculcate better typography in your web application, you should focus on several essential elements like text size, fonts, text alignment, hierarchy, letter spacing, line spacing, color & contrast, and whitespace.

Use Color Scheme to Improve Aesthetics

A color scheme is an essential element in a web application design. It is an arrangement or combination of colors in any online website, web app, mobile app, etc.

A properly executed color scheme helps to grab the attention of the users. Moreover, it is helpful to communicate the message on a visual and physiological level.

Color Scheme to Improve Aesthetics

If you also want to provide better aesthetics to the users and grab their attention immediately, you should integrate a good color scheme. For the same, you should focus on some essential things as follows.

  • It would be best if you did not utilize a wide range of colors. Instead, focus on using 2-3 colors to hold the user’s attention. Moreover, some of the most well-known web apps around the world use limited colors.
  • Different cultures depict different meanings of colors, and hence, you should focus on integrating the right set of colors as per the audience.

Use WhiteSpace to Provide Better UX

WhiteSpace is also known as the negative space, and it is the space between the text, graphics, images, and blocks.

By utilizing whitespace properly, you can maintain a balance between various elements of your web application, such as copy, sidebar, margins, etc.

WhiteSpace to Provide Better UX

When you maintain whitespace on the web application, users can easily find the desired information and navigate flawlessly.

Moreover, whitespace offers various benefits such as increased readability, better interaction, highlighted CTA, etc.

Usability Aims for User Centric Design

Usability is a measure of how a user utilizes a product/ service to achieve a specific goal. In simple words, usability is the process by which a user can access a web application.

Usability depends on the five most important components. Let’s have a brief about all of them.

Usability Aims for User Centric Design

Learnability: It is the primary component that leaves the first impression about any web application. Here, learnability means the ability of a user to learn and access the web application easily and instantly.

Memorability: A user visiting the web application after a certain interval of time should be able to recall all the things easily.

Efficiency: How well a user can execute a task after which they have understood the design. If users cannot complete a task without any hindrance, what is the reason behind it?

Error Tolerance: How instantly can users revert from a mistake after committing it? In short, the response of an interface towards human errors. Here, you can monitor mistakes committed by users and how they are tackling them to find out the issues in your design.

Satisfaction: Determining how pleasant a user feels while working on a web application. A user should be able to achieve this goal and feel like coming back to the particular web application again.

SEO-Friendly Design Helps to Rank Higher

You should definitely create the web application for your target audience; however, you should not forget search engine optimization (SEO).

It would be best if you also looked after essential elements that are not visible to your eye for SEO. It includes meta tags, title tags, headings, HTML coding, etc.

By making all of these things appropriate, you create an SEO-friendly design that helps you rank well in the search engines.

Divide Content into Small Chunks

Content is the most crucial element of the web application. More than anything else, users engage with your web application based on the content. Therefore you should give utmost importance to this element.

The content of your web application should answer all of the users’ queries straightforwardly. It should bring value to the life of users. Hence, it would help if you kept it informative, engaging, and entertaining.

Here, you should invest time in creating the best content for your web application. Moreover, you should divide your content into small chunks as people access the web app from devices and follow a specific pattern for scanning.

When you create content that resonates well with the visuals of the web app and divide it into specific parts, you can attract more users and keep them engaged for a long time.

It is not the end. There are various other elements to create an attractive UI for web applications. Next, we will look after the common challenges of designing and developing a web application.

Major Challenges in Web Application Design

Here are some of the basic challenges during web app design:

Choosing the Right Tech Stack

A web application tech stack consists of programming language, server, database, caching system, and more.

The selection of the right tech stack can make or break your web application. Many businesses face issues in choosing the right technology stack for the web application due to various options. Moreover, they choose the wrong tech stack and deal with many issues down the road.

To avoid this, you should choose the right tech stack as per your business goals and industry needs. To know more, check out this extensive guide on the web app tech stack.

Performance and Speed

Speed is one of the most important factors in a web application. Nobody likes to wait for a web application that takes a lot of time to load. If your web application takes more time to load, users will leave it and visit a competitor.

The performance of a web app is linked to the code, unoptimized database, third-party plugins, and more. Developers face issues creating a web application that offers consistent performance and speed on multiple devices.

To resolve these things, developers need to choose things in advance and make their intentions clear.

For example, if you want to integrate many visuals on your web app, then inform web developers from the beginning. By doing this, they can create a web application that performs efficiently with more visuals.


The majority of designers and developers create web applications as per the current needs. Hence, they are not able to scale the web application in the future.

To avoid this, you should design your web application by focusing on the bigger picture from the start. By doing this, you can deliver a better experience to users for a long time.

Web Security Threats

With the increasing number of attacks on web applications worldwide, developers face issues in keeping the web application & user’s data secure.

To provide better security to the users, you should keep an eye on the various web application security vulnerabilities such as DDoS attacks, Cross-Site Scripting, SQL Injection, and more.

Moreover, you need to implement best practices to avoid these threats. To know more, refer to this guide on web application security.

Best Web Application UI Design Examples for Inspiration

Let us quickly go through some web application user interface design examples.


Gumroad is a simple tool for online selling that helps you create and manage sales by directly connecting to Facebook, Twitter, or Email. It also helps you sell without taking any cuts from your income.

When you visit the web app, you will see that they have utilized beautiful pictures and colorful fonts. All these details explain things well.


Gumroad was designed to make selling as easy as sharing, so sellers can focus on their craft and not worry about collections, orders, or payments.


If you are familiar with Buffer, you know that they have a super clean web app. Its playful brand colors add a vivid splash to the UI and make it an attractive web application to visit.


As soon as you visit the homepage, Buffer indicates it offers some great social media management tools. With Buffer, you can schedule and share posts throughout the day on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.


Netlify makes the experience as smooth as the interaction itself. Everything is beautifully structured and clearly explained, and navigation between screens is a breeze. The web app is also intuitive. No guesswork is required.


Netlify offers a lot of features that make it stand out from the rest. Each feature of the web app is explained beautifully in an easy-to-follow manner. It is also very apparent that a lot of research has gone into making the UI/UX so pleasant for users.


Notion is a well-known web application that offers various components to improve productivity, such as notes, databases, kanban boards, wikis, calendars, and reminders.


As soon as you visit the web app, you can see different features of Notion. Moreover, they have explained all the things through emotions, icons, and a clear user interface.


Grooveshark has the same interface like most other streaming music sites; however, with a few neat twists: you can search music by popularity or availability, browse by genre, and listen to full tracks before you decide to buy.


Those looking for album art can enjoy one of the best visual experiences in streaming audio.


When you are designing an interface that will be useful every day, you need to be restrained. If your colors and fonts are too bold, they will quickly become tiresome to look after. Zendesk does a great job maintaining a great design while keeping it focused on the content.


Zendesk also keeps its typography straightforward. It has simple fonts and is not using too many fonts, which affects the readability.


Mailchimp does a great job at creating a consistent design language across all of its platforms. They embrace a consistent color palette and use structural elements to establish an overall design style. This leaves Mailchimp designers room to be expressive with each email.


Mailchimp has a great design team. They make sure they only communicate to the user through typography, forms, color, and a defined voice in their copy.


The design of Squarespace emphasizes more on white space. The space on the page is used effectively which many designers might not have focused upon. The homepage consists of a simple heading with two lines and a get started button.


They have removed every last bit of extraneous design. Hence, it feels like you’re actually building a web app instead of playing with drag-and-drop elements.

Bottom Line

We conclude that design is one of the most important aspects of a web application. The elements of web application design and examples help you gain better insights into how to design UI for web applications.

Also, we looked at the common challenges in web app design and development. By keeping an eye on these challenges from the beginning, you can design and develop a modern web application as per the market needs.

If you have a unique web app idea and want to create an attractive and scalable web application design, you can contact us.

Guru TechnoLabs offers the best web app design and development services for all kinds of businesses across the globe. Hence, we can understand your business in-depth and provide you with the most suitable solution for your future web application.

Ravi Makhija
Ravi Makhija

An entrepreneur, an IT professional. Tech geek. Founder & CEO at Guru TechnoLabs - Globally Trusted Web & Mobile App Development Company. Loves writing about new technologies and the latest trends in IT field.

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