Product Spotlight: Add LottieFiles For Polished User Experience

Make your no code mobile app really shine with animation! Thunkable integrates with LottieFiles to make this possible. Read more for tips and info.
Written by
Ariel Gonzalez
Published on
May 1, 2023

It’s the little things that can make a big difference. We all start our app development on Thunkable with a blank screen, and it is up to us to turn this canvas into a beautiful work of art. Buttons, labels, and data are all key elements of every app. But what sets top-tier apps apart from the rest is a crisp and clean user interface (UI). A part of that clean UI experience is the seamless use of animations, motions, and images that usher the user forward. 

Adding animations to your app isn't just about making it look pretty — it can have a tangible impact on user engagement and retention rates. Animations can help to grab the user’s attention and create an emotional connection with the app, making it more memorable and engaging. Animations can also communicate complex ideas or features in a simple and intuitive way, helping to improve the customer's understanding and perception of the app's value.

So, how do you implement this capability? 

Thunkable has made it easy to add animation with a tool like LottieFiles. Their free library of over 2000 animations allows you to easily add beautiful animations to your no code app. Let's explore the many ways that animations can benefit your app and how you can use it to create a delightful and unforgettable user experience!

But first…

What is LottieFiles?

LottieFiles is an animation workflow platform that creates and hosts Lottie, a JSON-based animation file format. Their platform enables designers to create, add, and access a library of elaborate animations for any platform — like mobile apps or websites — without needing to write extensive code. LottieFiles makes all this possible by converting big animation files into lightweight and scalable JSON files that can be integrated easily into any platform developers need. 

Due to Lottie’s extensive application, use, and user-friendly approach to adding animation to digital mediums, Thunkable has created a seamless integration with LottieFiles so app creators can easily add enhancing animations to their apps.

So, let’s get into it.

5 Ways Animation Can Enhance The User Experience

Many individuals are visually-driven. Want an example? Which of these two images caught your eye first?

static image vs gif

With animation, designers can create a seamless and intuitive user experience that keeps customers engaged and coming back for more. App developers must remember: everything in moderation. Like other design elements throughout the app, mobile animations can be fun and decorative but should also serve a functional purpose.

Here we will highlight five ways to integrate animation successfully into your no code mobile app. And the best part? You can do this all with the LottieFiles integration.

1. Progress and Loading Animations 

Probably the most common animation in digital mediums, especially mobile apps, are progress and loading animations. These types of animations serve as a functional and informative addition to the user experience of your app. Some actions within the app might take some time, like, for instance, collecting data, uploading a file, or updating a feed. 

Regardless, during the time it takes for the content to update, the animation informs users that a process is taking place in the background. This lets users know what is happening, retains their attention, and even improves the user experience by providing a delightful and fun animation as they wait for an app function to complete.

The best designers anticipate friction or points of frustration a user might experience and aim to overcome them to make the overall experience feel polished. If the frustrations can’t be overcome, then delighting the user is the next best thing.

Recommended animations to mitigate wait time frustration:

loading gif lottiefiles example
searching gif lottiefiles example

Need more loading or progress bar options? View their category for more.

2. Onboarding

New app customers should receive a  big, warm welcome! And what better way to do this than with a fun animated image?

When a new customer opens your app for the first time, you can greet them with a branded animation. Additionally, animations can guide users through the app's features and functionalities, making it easy for them to understand how the app works.

Recommended animations to enhance the onboarding experience:

welcome gif lottiefiles example
hola hello gif lottiefiles example

Search through these welcome animations for more options.

3. Feedback and Gamification Elements

Use animations to provide visual feedback and confirmation to users when they perform actions such as tapping a button or completing a task. This can enhance the user's sense of control and satisfaction, making the app more enjoyable to use.

To take your app a step further, animations can enhance gamification elements within your app as well. For example, let’s look at an app like Headspace. To encourage users to continue utilizing the app, not only does the app track progress but after a user completes a meditation or a several-day streak, they are greeted with an encouraging animation that gives them the motivation to continue. 

If you can elicit an emotional response from your customer, you’ll be able to keep them coming back for more.

Recommended animations to delight users with visual feedback:

checkmark gif lottiefiles example
star gif lottiefiles example

Check out LottieFiles’ confirmation and check mark animations.

4. Marketing and Branding Animations 

Of course, if you’re layering any type of design or assets into your app to enhance the user interface, you must ensure it’s all aligned with your branding efforts. You can animate your logo — or even mascots such as Duolingo does in their app. Duolingo’s winged friend appears throughout the app experience as your personal cheerleader. Animating your logo or mascot is a great way to give your branding some personality while staying omnipresent through the user’s experience. 

You can also use animations to promote your own marketing efforts. An animation can be leveraged to showcase a promotional video or entice users to subscribe to your content or promote monetization efforts.

Recommended animations to enhance marketing efforts within your app:

innovation gif lottiefiles example
upgrade now gif lottiefiles example

5. Visual Cues

Animations within mobile apps can be particularly useful to call customers’ attention to important aspects of the app. 

Developers can use animations to provide visual cues and hints to users, helping them understand how to interact with the app. For example, animating a button to pulsate or bounce when it's available for interaction can draw the user's attention and encourage them to take action.

Recommended animations to notify or call user attention to an aspect within the app:

notification gif lottiefiles example
clicking gif lottiefiles example

These animated notifications are fun. To find one that matches your needs check out these animations.

How To Add Animation To Your No Code Mobile App

Now that you know what animations have the potential to do for your audience to increase app engagement, you almost have every tool you need to get started.

But first. you need to sign into Thunkable’s drag and drop app builder platform. If you don’t yet have an account, sign up here!

Once you have your project, drag the Image or Animation component onto the screen. Now you can add the animation. You can either upload an animation into the Media Files or select an already existing animation from LottieFiles.

After creating an account with LottieFiles, simply search for the type of animation that would best fit your content and intention.

The next step is to either:

  • Download the animation you have selected and upload it into the Thunkable platform, or
  • Copy the Lottie Animation URL and paste it into the Animation component

And just like that you have added an animation component to your no code mobile app! To learn how to add a loop, create functionality around the animation, and more, watch our tutorial.

Add Life to Your App with Animation

Ready to add animation to your no code app creation and reap the benefits? Get started today with our easy-to-use LottieFiles and Thunkable integration.

Interested in seeing a demo of Thunkable’s no code native app builder? Connect with our team and we’ll walk you through how Thunkable can best align with your app goals.

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Written by
Ariel Gonzalez

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