The principles of good UI design

These principles could be used for creating interfaces that are both usable and appealing to users.

Getting Started

Before you start designing any user interface, make sure you take a look at the principles of good UI design. These principles will help you to stick to the goal of UI design, which is to create an easy-to-navigate environment for users so that they can achieve their goals. 

Overall, the difference between a good and not-so-good UI design is the right combination of good usability and visual appeal. 

10 most important UI design principles

The UI design principles to consider for designing good user interfaces are as follows:

Gestalt Principles

Apart from the above-mentioned principles, Gestalt principles are also very important to consider when designing user interfaces. 

As defined by IxDF 

“Gestalt Principles are principles of perception that describe how humans group similar elements, recognize patterns, and simplify complex images when we perceive objects.“

What makes these principles important? 

People build a perception of a UI by ‘seeing’ it before they read and actively understand it. That is where Gestalt principles work. These principles make a UI understandable at a glance. 

The most used Gestalt Principles are as follows:

Dieter Ram’s 10 Principles of Good Design 

UI design has derived a lot of inspiration from Industrial design. It is well known that a lot of digital products and designers have modeled after Dieter Rams’ 10 Principles of Good Design. 

Dieter Rams in order to answer the question “Is my design a good design?”, had developed 10 principles of good design.

According to Dieter Rams, good design:

  1. is innovative

  2. makes a product useful

  3. is aesthetic

  4. makes a product understandable

  5. is unobtrusive

  6. is honest

  7. is long-lasting

  8. is thorough down to the last detail

  9. is environmentally friendly

  10. involves as little design as possible

These principles are still relevant today, despite having been defined sometime in the 1970s.

Do’s & Don'ts



1. Do make consistent user interfaces.

2. Allow users to navigate easily through shortcuts.

3. Provide information feedback.

4. Prevent errors as much as possible.

1. Don’t add to users' cognitive load through your UI.

2. Don’t design UIs only for specific users.

3. Don’t add unnecessary complexity to the UI.

Suggested Tools 

  • Figma

  • Sketch

  • Adobe XD


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