10 Best UI/UX Design Software To Build The Best Customer Experience [2022]

Back in the day, software products were accompanied by hefty instruction manuals. Users had to spend hours thumbing through the pages, figuring out how to use even the most basic features.

In today’s world, that approach simply wouldn’t fly. People demand software that’s intuitive and easy to use, so they can use apps productively from the get-go.

This has made user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) design a critical element in software development. In this article, I’ll review the top UI/UX design tools available to help developers create software that meets user expectations. 

Software Shortlist 

Here’s the list of the best UI/UX design software I’ll cover in this article.

  1. Balsamiq 
  2. Figma 
  3. Webflow 
  4. Sketch 
  5. ProtoPie 
  6. Proto.io 
  7. Lucidchart 
  8. Bubble 
  9. InVision Studio 
  10. Adobe XD  

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best app UI design software? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): I look for software that embodies the principles of good user interface design
  2. Usability: I’m seeking tools that help UX designers create working prototypes quickly
  3. Integrations: I expect UI/UX design tools to integrate natively with major design and business platforms 
  4. Value for $: I look for a per-user cost that makes sense for both small and large design teams

UX Design Software: Key Features

When evaluating UI/UX design tools, the core features I expect to see include:

  1. Code-based prototyping: Going beyond simple images to create a realistic representation of the software in action.
  2. Collaboration tools: The ability for everyone in the design to contribute ideas, thoughts, and comments.
  3. Easy developer handoff:A built-in process for passing the completed design over to developers for implementation.
  4. Auto layout: Automatically resizing elements as required to give an accurate design visualization.
  5. Real sample data: The option to include realistic data in prototypes, bringing them to life as they will work in the real world.
  6. A design system: A communication tool that guides UI designers in using the right tools, adhering to brand guidelines, and deploying the correct assets.
  7. Availability: The ability to create prototypes for a range of different operating systems and software platforms.
  8. Security: Robust protection of IP rights and data privacy safeguards.

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Overviews Of The 10 Best UI Design Software Solutions 

Here’s a brief description of each of the UX design platforms to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. Balsamiq – Best for low-fidelity wireframing

balsamiq ui ux design software screenshot
Balsamiq gives you a detailed graphical representation of your design.

Balsamiq helps a designer create advanced wireframes rapidly. It offers the simple clarity of paper sketches, combined with the more sophisticated features that software can offer. Ideal for creating sketch-style mockups, Balsamiq includes collaboration tools for gathering feedback from other team members. 

You can drag and drop graphic design elements, as well as resize or rearrange them. Features include revision history, software prototyping, survey tools, presentation tools, and data linking. The software is available in both desktop and cloud-based versions. 

This UI tool integrates with major software platforms such as Confluence, JIRA, and Google Drive. 

Balsamiq costs from $7.50/user/month. A free 30-day trial is available.

2. Figma – Best for online design collaboration

figma ui ux design software screenshot
Figma is a good choice for complex design projects.

Based in the cloud, Figma is a popular UI/UX design platform. The software includes features such as content management, team libraries, audio conversations, overlays, and version history. Figma supports AB user testing and includes a pen tool for generating arc designs. 

Another popular feature is FigJam, an online whiteboard designed to make collaboration easy. 

You can also add notes, pin files, track contributors and work with other team members in real-time. This tool is well suited to building interactive prototype designs, defining interactions, and creating design transitions. 

This tool integrates with major third-party applications such as Maze, Confluence, Zeplin, and Pendo.  

Figma costs from $12/user/month. A free plan with limited features is also available.

3. Webflow – Best for designing websites with a visual canvas

webflow ui ux design software screenshot
Webflow helps you create both mobile app and desktop designs.

Webflow is a web development platform that helps you design, build, and launch custom websites without writing code. It allows you to design using HTML5, CSS#, and JavaScript in a fully-visual canvas. Webflow automatically translates your design into code that’s ready to publish on the web.

Features include editing tools that leverage custom templates to create original designs. Using the design module, you can work with cascading style sheets (CSS) and make styling changes from existing elements. Webflow enables web design without the need for domain setup, cPanel, or FTP.

This tool integrates with many business apps, including Shopify, Google Analytics, MailChimp, SoundCloud, and Zapier. 

Webflow costs from $12/user/month. A free trial is available.

4. Sketch – Best for a fully-collaborative design process

sketch ui ux design software screenshot
Sketch offers advanced design prototyping tools to help you create a better user experience.

Sketch is a popular UI/UX design tool. Using this software, you can design vector graphics, share designs with other team members, and manage your designs within a single platform. It’s easy to get feedback on designs, automate workflows, share prototypes and conduct user research. 

Features include facilities for data export, project management, and detailed reporting. Symbols or layer styles can be stored in a centralized repository for future use. Sketch is optimized for Mac users, with support for P3 color profiles and native font rendering.

This UI UX design tool integrates with many different applications, including Flinto, ProtoPie, Maze, and Abstract. 

Sketch costs from $9/user/month. A free trial is available. 

5. ProtoPie – Creates realistic prototypes that include interactions

protopie ui ux design software screenshot
ProtoPie gives you complete control over every design element.

ProtoPie enables you to create realistic prototypes of apps for mobile, desktop, web, and IoT. By adding interactions to your designs, you can create the look and feel of the final product. This no-code solution also allows you to reuse components through the Interaction Library. 

You can invite an unlimited number of people to view prototypes through sharable links. Plus, you can create interaction specs to reduce misunderstandings with developers during handoff. The dashboard includes a choice of light and dark themes. 

This web and mobile app design tool integrates with platforms such as Sketch, Adobe XD, and Figma.

ProtoPie costs from $11/user/month. A 30-day free trial is available.  

6. Proto.io – A wealth of building blocks for rapid prototyping

proto.io ui ux design software screenshot
Proto.io gets you up to speed with your visual design quickly. 

Proto.io is a prototyping solution designed to get rapid results. Using the intuitive drag-and-drop interface, anyone can create a design quickly and easily. Proto.io includes an extensive range of pre-built components to accelerate design prototyping. 

These include over 1000 templates and a number of interface libraries. Proto.io also offers over 6,000 digital assets, including stock images, icons, and sound effects. You can add different levels of interactivity according to the needs of your project. 

This tool integrates with design and business applications such as Adobe XD, Adobe Photoshop, Sketch, and Figma.

Proto.io costs from $24/user/month. A free 15-day trial is available. 

7. Lucidchart – An intelligent diagramming tool for better design decisions

lucidchart ui ux design software screenshot
With Lucidchart, you can build a natural and effective user flow.

Lucidchart is a UI/UX design solution focused on diagramming and data visualization. Using this tool, you can create simple visual diagrams of required flows. You can share process maps with colleagues to get feedback. Features include feedback management, data import, and customizable templates. 

Lucidchart is well-suited to sketching and sharing professional flowchart diagrams. A common visual language is used across the platform to improve teamwork and enhance communication.  

This tool integrates with major business applications such as Slack, GitHub, Salesforce, and LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

Lucidchart costs from $7.95/user/month. A free plan with limited features is available. 

8. Bubble – Best for no-code web app design

bubble ui ux design software screenshot

Bubble allows UI/UX designers to define interactivity precisely.

Bubble is a no-code platform for creating digital products. By eliminating time-consuming coding, it allows you to cut development time from months to hours. 

Bubble empowers anyone on the team to make changes, even if they have no design experience. They can create interactive, multi-user apps for desktop and mobile web browsers. 

Anyone using the software can create polished products without knowledge of HTML or CSS. Deployment and hosting are handled within the platform for unlimited users. 

This tool integrates with popular services such as ActiveCampaign, Google Contacts, Quickbooks, Shopify, and SurveyMonkey. 

Bubble costs from $25/user/month. A free plan with limited features is also available. 

9. InVision Studio – Best for a real-time, collaborative design interface

invision studio ui ux design software screenshot
InVision Studio offers granular control over design elements.

InVision is an advanced UI/UX design platform for creating software products. From a single dashboard, UX UI designers can create designs, experiment, test, and collaborate. Features include digital whiteboards, prototype creation, planning, wireframing, and feedback management. 

Using this software, you can style layers, animate drawings, and edit vectors. You can also make use of features such as editing timelines, instant playback, and mobile device mirroring. The software also includes shared design libraries, version rollback, and push/pull changes. 

This tool integrates with popular platforms such as Confluence, Microsoft Teams, Trello, and Slack.

InVision costs from $7.95/user/month. A free trial is available.

10. Adobe XD – Great for creating highly-realistic UI/UX designs

adobe xd ui ux design software screenshot
Using Adobe XD, you can create designs that stand out from the crowd.  

Adobe XD is a powerful UI design tool for high-end development work. The software allows you to build original designs, configure layouts and add special effects. Created assets are saved in a cloud repository, from where they can be shared with other stakeholders. Other features include navigation menus, animations, audio, user flows, and custom passwords. 

A range of input devices can be used in prototypes, from keyboards to game controllers. You can preview designs on both iOS and Android devices. Adobe XD also makes it easy to draw lines, shapes, and paths.  

This tool integrates with popular design and business tools such as Zeplin, Slack, and Microsoft Teams.

Adobe XD costs from $9.99/user/month. A free 7-day trial is available. 

Other Options

Here are a few more UI design platforms that didn’t make the top list.

  1. Adobe Photoshop – Best for traditional raster image-based design using Adobe Creative Cloud
  2. Adobe Illustrator – Ideal for conventional vector-based design
  3. Axure – Best for creating realistic, clickable prototype designs
  4. Origami Studio – Combines design, animation, and prototyping for web and mobile app UI
  5. FlowMapp – An intuitive UX tool for web design and mockup
  6. VisualSitemaps – Best for auto-generating visual sitemaps
  7. Optimal Workshop’s Treejack – The original tree-test design solution
  8. Wireframe.cc – A simple but effective wireframing and interaction design tool
  9. KonceptApp – A one-stop solution for prototyping and usability testing

What is UI/UX design software?

User interface and user experience design software helps with the development of apps that are easy and pleasant to use. User interface (UI) design is concerned with how people interact with the software, while user experience (UX) design focuses on the overall customer experience of using the app.

Using UI/UX design tools, creators can build prototypes, mockups, and wireframes that demonstrate the intended look and feel. These are then handed over to developers who turn the design concepts into a finished software product. 

What do you think about this list?

Did I nail it with my top UI/UX design software list, or did I leave out your favorite tool? Let us know in the comments below. I suggest you also check out our related articles on the best prototyping tools software and the best design thinking tools. 

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Related Read: Optimizing The Website Customer Journey

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