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A Super App Will Solve All Your problems — Decoding the UX Behind Super Apps

5 min read
Alka Jha

Written by Alka Jha

22 August, 2022

The phone rings in the car
The wife is working hard
She’s running late tonight again

Well, I know what I’ve been told
You gotta work to feed the soul

But I can’t do this all on my own
No, I know, I’m no Super App

I’m no Super App

But you can be.

Also, a quick trip down memory lane to the aughts seems more than apt as we talk about Super Apps — and how far we’ve come.

The 2000s were a glorious time. Yes, we collectively hardcore crushed on Zach Braff’s character on Scrubs, George W. Bush became president, Pluto got reclassified as a dwarf planet, BARACK OBAMA BECAME PRESIDENT, and the development of apps took off.

Remember Cam Wow, Temple Run, and VINE?

It was a brilliant time. Fast forward to 2022, and Super Apps are taking over.

WeChat already has 1.24 billion users.

A Super App in its truest form, the Chinese app is a cohesive platform for messaging, shopping, social networking, and payments. For free.

What is a Super App?

Need to listen to music while on your way to work on a vehicle you booked on the app which you will pay for using the app while messaging your colleague that you will be picking up the coffee for the day which you placed an order for from the app and also paid for using the same?

It’s quite the mouthful. Yes. But this is exactly what a Super App is.

It’s everything you will ever need in one app.

As of November 2021, 67% of consumers in the US showed interest in using an app that integrates at least two, if not multiple digital experiences.

While 11% of them would like all their activities to take place in one app.

While 11% may not look like a large number, we’re already heading to a future that will only be Super Apps.

The Importance of Super Apps

Our whole lives run on our phones now. From when we wake up and log into our social media to when we go to bed to get our daily dose of nighttime sleep music — there’s an app that caters to our every need.

This is why Super Apps are important. But, it’s not the only reason they are all the rage.

For starters, it’s a great way for businesses to increase their customer base. It opens the path for natural cross-promotion and is also a great way to engage with customers — naturally, traffic increases.

It’s a splendid feature to have — promoting different features within various sections of the app. You can amplify the business through discoverability and marketability when linked with social media.

Another reason why it’s important is that it drives growth strategies. The only way to grow is to keep expanding and adding more services. While doing so, the Super App enables reduced acquisition costs while retaining a loyal customer base.

The benefits are far-reaching. It saves the customers’ time; it’s more than convenient. It increases the ease of use and is adaptable and flexible to keep up with the busy customer’s needs.

Yet, without great UI/UX a Super App is a good as a super failure. So, what makes it the live wire that it is?

UI/UX Elements to Include in a Super App

  • Gamification

Black Lotus, the meditation app had tasked UI/UX design agency Pepper Square to re-imagine the app’s UI design. The task was to make it globally appealing with iconography and symbols.

Other asks included aligning the new UI to different sections of the existing app and creating a symbolic representation of a user’s 10 unique stages of spirituality. Among other ways, Pepper Square employed gamification to bring value to the app.

Although not a Super App, the Black Lotus app increased users by 72% and a 30% increase in app downloads with the help of gamification. So, Super App or not, it’s good to note that gamification drives spectacular conversions.

  • Nudges

No, not Facebook’s Poke’s lesser-known cousin.

Have you ever wondered why you’re back to picking the same things repeatedly while ordering in? Even when you’re feeling particularly adventurous on a particular day. It’s because you’ve been nudged. All it takes are subtle interventions that govern our choices. In this case, a notification. It’s also how the designer presents our options through the interface.

A nudge is the easiest form of promotion within a Super App. You may be nudged to order food, pay for it, and then listen to music while playing a game on the same app. Without you realizing it, you’ve already spent a significant amount of time in the app.

  • Inclusivity

Having a Super App may mean that you’ve got one of the most coveted products in your hand, but it also means that your target audience is spread far and wide. The downside of a Super App is that since the demographic of active users may be scattered all over across different age groups and geographies, it needs to be accountable for the needs of many.

Hence, making the app as inclusive as possible is the only way to ensure success.

  • Aesthetic usability

If it ain’t attractive, it ain’t a Super App.

If you didn’t know this, now is a good time — 38% of users will leave a website if they find it unattractive.

Perhaps, it is safe to draw parallels. If an app didn’t look visually appealing, would you still want to spend hours on it? Most importantly, would you trust it with your money if it looks tacky?

Although responsive design has been a popular choice for years, designers now need to find creative ways to utilize real estate on larger screens, if the UX design is data-heavy. The best way to go about this is by de-cluttering the dashboard and only displaying important points to not overwhelm the user.

  • Data privacy

Speaking of keeping your money safe — the Super App has one more colossal responsibility to fulfill. And that is to keep your data safe. It’s to keep you safe. We’re in 2022, and data and privacy infringement are increasingly becoming an unforgivable crime.

What can UI/UX designers do to ensure that data is protected?

Ask for little. When creating buttons and fields to fill, ensure you’re only asking for information critical for the user to move forward.

And there you have it. Here’s how you can get started in building your own Super App. First, begin with a transformational design. Then, if you’re feeling stuck, reach out to the creative guys at Pepper Square to get started. They’ll know exactly what to do.

Alka Jha

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