Design

Why Pixel Perfect Matters


Reading Time: 3 minutes

Although code, structures, and algorithms are the core of every platform, users only see the pixels on the screen. So, to them, that is what defines how useful, enjoyable, or reliable a software product is. If the front end looks shoddy, then they will assume the back-end is shoddy too. Keep reading to know why Pixel Perfect could help you achieve optimal perfection.

 

Pixel Perfect? Tell Me About It

The concept of pixel-perfect is used by digital designers and layout designers to refer to various techniques that cover certain practices to achieve the perfect design. But, what is a perfect design? It is one where all the elements that make up a web page or app achieve an excellent user experience on any browser or device.

The pixel-perfect design concept is that everything is done to maximize sharpness and fidelity. Once the design is implemented, it should look identical on any device with no issues of any kind. Click To Tweet

When we talk about the perfect pixel in web or app design we are referring to all the praxis to take into account to maximize sharpness and fidelity. The goal is to get a product that is easy to perceive, understand, and interact with.

So, What it Takes to Achieve it?



Teamwork is key to develop an idea, that's why everyone in the team must be involved in the design process. Click To Tweet

Frontend developers bring to life a designer’s vision. To do so, all the team must be involved in the design process —including product managers, stakeholders, and more. Therefore, it is the efficiency of everyone working as a team that counts to create an attractive and efficient resource.

Here’s a suggested process to achieve Pixel Perfect:

1- Start Communicating Early

If the whole team, along with the clients, starts to collaborate from the inception phase, the intention of the design will be clear to everyone: it will help the stakeholders to present what they really want. It will also help developers, managers, and designers to make correct decisions in terms of achieving optimal perfection.

2- Analyze The Prototype With Developers

In the ideation process, designers often end up creating prototypes that are good from a UX perspective but require a lot of coding effort, leading to less than optimal use of resources.

Ideation is a creative process where designers generate ideas in sessions (brainstorming, worst possible idea). It is the third stage in the Design Thinking process. Click To Tweet

A basic understanding of HTML and CSS would go a long way toward making the prototype easy to code. Therefore, as part of the cycle, developers and designers should discuss with the team whether the prototype is efficient in terms of design intent, coding efforts, and user satisfaction.

3- Discuss Non-obvious Responsive Behavior

The incorporation of one or more series of high-fidelity screen images in specifications can be a very effective and efficient way of expressing interactions and behaviors.

For instance, they have to show user interface states (similar to storyboards) or interactive prototypes with detailed interaction designs that look and feel like the final product.

High-fidelity screen images in specifications will help developers not to misinterpret the interactions and deviate from the original idea. Click To Tweet

This type of source material will help developers not to misinterpret the interactions and deviate from the original idea.

4- Follow a Design System When Coding The Site

Before starting, developers should review the proposed design system and check if it covers all their needs. They will need to analyze which styles need to be set up, where will they be used, and how they might differ from page to page. By doing so, it will help them to make a plan for the project and to have a clear vision of how to build the required components to maintain a unified style.

5- Validate The Coded Version


In simple terms, validating ensures that your website complies with the standards accepted by most web designers. It also ensures accessibility for more people across web browsers and operating systems. Keep in mind that having an accessible website is also regarded as a good web design practice.

Looking for Pixel Perfect is not about getting a 100% perfect design, but more about bringing it closer to meet the requirements Click To Tweet

To conclude, let me clarify that it is not about getting a 100% perfect design, but more about bringing it closer to meet the requirements.

Pixel-perfect is a great approach to get started and follow to keep your work well organized and more reliable. Frankly speaking, in real life, you can’t get every detail perfect every time, either practically or economically. So take it easy and deliver what best suits you based on market research and established goals.

Thanks for reading!

 
@MarianaOchoa, Head of QualityAssurance at MagmaLabs

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