A mockup is a digital representation of a real-world object. Designers, developers, and other professionals use it to create products.
The purpose of a mockup is to test the aesthetics, functionality, and usability of an idea or product before it goes into production. Mockups can be created with different types of software.
Learn the best practices for creating a mockup.
Find Inspiration That Is Outside of Your Industry
One of the best ways to get inspired for your mockup is to find inspiration outside your industry. If you're a graphic designer, look at other designers' work; if you're an animator, look at other animators' work; if you're a writer, read up on other writers' processes; and so on.
You may not be able to copy someone else's entire process, but you can learn from them by observing their methods and how they get things done.
In addition to looking outside of your industry, look at what people are doing with their mockups, precisely, things they do well or struggle with in their designs. It will help you identify areas where you need improvement or where someone else's work has inspired you.
Observe the People Using the Product or Service
When you're creating a mockup, it's important to remember that your audience is an integral part of the process. You can try free etsy mockups to practice your skill if you need help with what to do precisely about your design for the first time to save time.
That's why if you're creating a mockup for a new product or service, it's essential to pay attention to how people will use it so that you can make sure that your mockup reflects the actual user experience.
For example, if you're creating a mockup for a restaurant menu, try using it yourself and see if you can navigate it and find what you want. Or, if you're designing a website for children, make sure all of the text is boldfaced and easy to read. It will give you an idea of what the general flow is like.
Set a Clear and Concise Goal
One of the most important things you can do when creating a mockup is to set a clear and concise goal. If you need to know what you're trying to accomplish, how will you know if it's working?
Defining the problem you want to solve and considering what kind of solution might work best is essential.
Consider how your audience will use the product or service when writing your specs—are they visual learners? Do they like taking notes on paper? How much time do they have? What kind of interactions will they have with the product?
Once you have this information, you can create an easy-to-follow user story to give you direction while designing your mockup.
Decide on Your Creative Approach and Direction
When creating a mockup, you'll want to know the direction and creative approach you want to take.
It is your chance to experiment with different things and determine what works for your brand. You want to avoid getting stuck on one idea because there are bound to be plenty of other ways to express your brand's personality that you still need to consider.
Make Notes About All of Your Ideas
Write down everything you can think of about your idea. You don't have to be super specific—remember that you want to capture the essence of your idea, not every detail.
The more specific you get at this stage, the more likely someone will ask questions later on and get frustrated when they can't answer them.
Next, take those notes and think about how they would make more sense in visual form. What would they look like? What kind of information would be on each card? How could they work together?
Get Feedback From Other People
When you're creating a mockup, it's essential to get feedback from other people. You can do this in several ways.
- First, ask them what they think is missing or how they would improve it.
- Second, ask for their input on what would make the product better.
- Third, ask whether there are features that are optional from the mockup.
- Fourth, offer to send them a copy of the final mockup so they can see if they think it looks similar to what you had envisioned.
- Fifth, give them a chance to look at the mockup while you're still working on it, and let them know what else they think needs to be done before the final design is ready.
Overall, creating mockups should be a fun and engaging process for you. Use them to experiment with different design ideas, polish your aesthetic, and challenge yourself to create something you're genuinely proud of. It will always be a challenging journey, but by following the best practices, you'll soon discover the full extent of what you can do.