December 2, 2020 Read 3 Min

What Keeps Users Happy on an App?

The secret lies in the little things we take for granted. On every good app, these ingredients keep users coming back for more.

What Keeps Users Happy on an App?

Ever been on an app and everything just feels… right? You don’t ever find yourself getting lost on it without a map, or thinking about ever uninstalling it. 

What makes apps like these simply feel great to be on?

To help you build an app that sparks joy, here are 3 things that subtly but majorly elevate an app’s user experience.

Intuitive Design

Usability is largely defined by intuitive design, which includes intuitive navigation, icons, colors, and even copy. 

It’s the little things that make using an app feel effortless — the way a button is exactly where you expect it to be, the way the pages on a website are arranged from highest to lowest priority, the way things just “feel right”. 

But why should you care?

People are great at Marie Kondo-ing their phones. It’s extremely common for mobile users to uninstall an app almost immediately after they download it, and a low score in usability will easily throw you down that abyss. If you want to see good user retention rates, avoid counterintuitive design that disorients and frustrates people.

Show your users you understand what they want, and give it to them before they ask. 

Make important actions easily accessible. Use standard icons for high-priority navigation buttons like Home and Menu. Use to-the-point copy like “Sign Up” and less ambiguous copy like “Be Part of the Family” (unless your brand’s niche is being quirky). Use colours with their psychological associations in mind, like red for No and green for Yes. These little things make using your app a seamless experience.


Users want apps to feel tailor-made for them. They want apps that adapt to their preferences, interests and behavior, securely storing and responding to their likes and dislikes without prompt.

This can include personalization in interface settings such as font size, notification sounds and color palettes, or personalization in content that allows users to receive relevant information based on their location and preferences. 

Spotify does this right.

spotify uniquely yours personalized playlists time capsule on repeat repeat rewindIf you’re a Malaysian Spotify user, you’ve probably noticed on your dashboard that you’re recommended localized playlists like Top Hits Malaysia and Carta Malaysia 50. Spotify also generates personalized playlists like Time Capsule and On Repeat, and honors all their Premium users with a summary of their past year’s listening behavior with Spotify Wrapped

These personalized items help them connect with their loyal users on a personal and emotional level, making the user experience all the more special.

Real Value

People don’t download apps just to take up space in their phones. They need to see a return on their investment of time and storage space, otherwise they abandon ship (read: your app). In simpler words, users need utility, a reason to stay.

Utility can come in different forms. It can be solutions to a problem, enhanced efficiency for common or daily tasks, or simply entertainment value. Your app should offer at least one of these things, or functionality that serves a true purpose in their lives.

Now think about your top three favourite apps. Do they have these three things checked? It’s most likely a resounding yes.

Make Great Apps With Us

Here at Snappymob, user experience is a priority. Our design and development teams care about tailoring every element from the loudest concepts to the quietest details of your products to perfection.

If you’re brimming with big ideas for your next app, talk to us! Let’s bring them to life together.

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