It doesn't matter whether you're an amateur who's creating your first web app or an old pro that could create a PWA with your eyes closed– having tools that support your process, style, and needs can mean the difference between a quick and easy launch and a project that never quite comes to fruition.
An essential component in your arsenal when it's time to start turning your idea into a reality is the ability to easily create wireframes, mockups, and prototypes for your web app.
If you've done a cursory google search for the best wireframe and prototype tools for your web app, you might feel overwhelmed by the options. Ranging from simple and straightforward to ridiculously powerful, the right tool for you will depend on your project, the size of your team, and your unique design process.
So, without further ado, let's look at some of the best tools out there for creating wireframes and prototypes for your new web app.
There are a lot of different tools that you can turn to when it comes to creating a wireframe for your web app, but one popular choice is Sketch. Designed to let you create wireframes and prototypes with ease, this platform allows you to collaborate with your entire team, share designs, and offer feedback all in one organized space.
One benefit of this tool is that you only have to pay the subscription fee for designers who actively edit and upload new designs. Everyone on your team, those who just want to preview and leave comments on designs, are free to add to your account. This ensures that everyone on your team can participate in the design process without straining your budget.
Another thing that people love about Sketch is that hundreds of extensions are available, thanks to an active third-party community of developers. At once simple and expansive, this tool can help turn your web app idea into a reality.
If you are looking for a tool that will help you turn mockups into interactive prototypes without diving into the messy world of code, Marvel might be the tool for you. You can use Photoshop or Sketch to create screens or do the job right in Marvel, and it lets you add gestures, hot spots, transitions, layers, and more.
In mere minutes, you can create interfaces and wireframes using Marvel and even automate the handoff between design and development. This tool also allows you to test how your users interact with your prototypes, ensuring that you can get it as perfect as humanly possible before the launch.
Marketed as a tool that everyone can use, from schools and startups to Fortune 100 companies, Marvel is suitable for a wide range of products. If you are looking for software that will support large teams creating products at scale, you can use Marvel Enterprise 3, which is specifically designed to maximize productivity in your design.
With Marvel Enterprise 3, you can go through every step of the design process in one consolidated location. Everything from brainstorming to the handoff to developers is on one platform that all team members can easily access. They even work with Jira, Sketch, Slack, and many other platforms to help you automate, build, and integrate using the tools you already know and love.
Of course, on a large scale, security is also a concern. Marvel Enterprise 3 claims to protect your data and work above the industry standard for security, ensuring that you never have to lose sleep at night worrying about worst-case scenarios.
Wondershare Mockitt is a cloud-based platform that you can use to build both wireframes and prototyping without any code. Designed to help teams work together efficiently and effectively, this is a reasonable choice if your team needs to be in constant communication about the project. In fact, once you start using Wondershare Mockitt, it becomes clear that collaboration is the central theme underlying the entire platform.
This tool offers sharable and customizable team libraries, secure and simple project sharing tools, real-time annotation features, and much more. On top of that, you can use this platform on any connected device with a modern browser, meaning that it can be ideal for a team that's frequently switching up their work environment.
If you've grown frustrated with the slow pace of prototyping in the past, you'll find that Wondershare Mockitt offers a refreshingly quick and easy approach to prototyping. You can make your prototypes highly interactive with simple and intuitive features, allowing you to create a prototype in mere minutes as opposed to several hours.
Sometimes, getting started with creating a wireframe is the hardest part of designing a web app. If you're looking for a tool that will help you get going with your idea, Balsamiq Mockups might be just the thing.
Perfect for people who don't have any experience, this is an incredibly popular tool for rough, simple wireframing. There are many drag-and-drop elements integrated into the software, and this tool allows you to see what your app would look like across different devices.
There are also well-integrated user testing and collaboration tools that make this a solid tool for amateurs and pros alike. While this isn't the ideal tool for creating upscale, professional prototypes, it can be very useful for visualizing some of your initial concepts or for creating simple, bare-bones apps.
Cacoo is a diagram tool that you can use to create wireframes, mockups, prototypes, and more. Integrated with the likes of Google Drive, Visio, and Confluence, to name a few, you'll find that Cacoo works well whether you're working in the same office as your team or if they're distributed around the world. Offering real-time collaborative features, you can share and edit your wireframes at the same time to boost productivity and keep the design process flowing smoothly.
With loads of templates to choose from and an intuitive interface, Cacoo offers a pretty complete package for anyone in the business of designing web apps. Useful for project managers, product developers, design teams, developers, and marketers, this is a reasonable one-stop-shop for your design needs.
For designers looking for one piece of software where they can plan, build, and share their work, MockFlow might just provide the solution. With team chat and a built-in sharing feature, real-time collaboration is not only possible but also simple when you use this online wireframe software.
Regularly undergoing security audits and consistently updating, users will be happy to know that a team of design engineering experts maintains this platform. Individuals and design teams alike can use this tool for everything from design workflow and sitemaps to UI spec systems and wireframing. This is a truly powerful, all-in-one web-based wireframe, mockup, and prototype software.
Even though there's a lot you can do with MockFlow, it's not overly complicated to use. With built-in templates available to use and the option to design a new wireframe from scratch, you have a lot of control over your design using this tool.
If you're searching for a general-purpose diagramming software that you can use when designing your web app, you might want to take a closer look at Lucidchart. With a simple drag-and-drop IU, you can build wireframes, mind maps, flowcharts, and other useful organizational visualizations.
Also outfitted with collaboration features, this software supports video chat, commenting, and in-editor chat.
You can use Lucidchart's wireframe tool to design the skeletal framework of your web app, complete with hotspots, links, and layers. Designed as a tool for product managers and designers, you can use this tool to visualize every potential display scenario for your app to ensure that you create the best possible user experience.
Lucidchart also offers an extensive library of templates, which can both provide inspiration and help you wireframe more efficiently.
A cloud-based software designed to help you create prototypes for web platforms, Android, and iOS, Fluid UI touts its rapid prototyping feature that helps you avoid getting bogged down during your design process. It also allows you to upload any existing graphic assets you have, meaning that you don't have to start from scratch just because you decided to try out a new tool.
There are also more than two thousand built-in components to help ensure that prototyping is as fast as possible. These include libraries for wireframes, material design, Windows, and iOS.
One of the benefits of this tool is the ability to add interactivity to your prototypes easily. Additionally, you can utilize their real-time collaboration tools to keep everything moving forward.
When you use Fluid UI, all of your work is immediately available to your entire team and saved in the cloud. At the same time, you can lock pages when you're editing them, and other team members can see you make changes in real-time. They even support video calls, meaning that you can talk about your ideas and implement them simultaneously.
Another reason this tool is popular is because of the ability to run remote user testing sessions to give your prototype a test run. Not only do you get to talk to them about their experience with the web app, but you can also watch how they interact with it.
An ideal tool for project managers, developers, and designers to work side-by-side (even if they're in completely different time zones,) UXPin is a comprehensive UX design platform and a functional collaborative tool.
As you likely know, sometimes the transition between low-fi wireframes to hi-fi mockups and prototypes can be a bit clunky. UXPin creates a much simpler flow, allowing you to have a more efficient process.
Another aspect of UXPin that makes it ideal for product teams is that it integrates with design tools like Sketch and Photoshop as well as project management tools like Jira and Slack. Seamlessly fitting into your workflow, this tool can help you go smoothly from idea to reality.
Axure RP lets you build working prototypes with an unlimited combination of conditions, triggers, and actions. Primarily a tool for UX professionals rather than novices, Axure RP allows you to explore the experience and test your web app fully.
One of the great things about this tool is that it's incredibly powerful yet doesn't require that you know any code. You can create high-fidelity prototypes that really let you and your team visualize the functionality and interactivity of your app.
Touted as a complete tool for UX pros, you can also use Axure RP to create wireframes, customer journeys, diagrams, and more.
With Slack and Microsoft Teams integrations, you can easily keep your entire team in the loop when it comes to your web app design. You can even use Confluence or Jira to embed your fully-functional prototypes, meaning that sharing your design with your team is a breeze.
Many design tool integrations help make this software so powerful. You can easily bring artboards from Sketch, import layers from Adobe XD, and copy frames from Figma.
There's no shortage of impressive tools designed to help you visualize and plan out your new web app. However, depending on your needs, style, and budget, you might find that some tools are more appropriate for your project than others.
You can build a web app as a company-of-one or hire a whole crew to create your dream app. Many of these tools are accessible for amateurs, while some are definitely more geared towards full teams of pros. Either way, you can rest assured that the potential to create your own web app is within your grasp.
That being said, is that what you want to do? If you aren't stoked about the prospects of overcoming the learning curve of new software and delving into the world of wireframing, mockups, prototypes, and more, there are other options. As you can see, even selecting the right software to create your web app is quite the research project on its own.
At Planetary, we know a thing or two about creating digital products. Working with the likes of Google, Amazon, Univision, and Buzzfeed, our team consists of the best developers, designers, and product experts from around the world. If it's time for you to turn your concept into a reality, contact us today and tell us about your project.
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