Top 30 UI Elements Every Designer Should Know In 2024

User Interface (UI) elements refer to the components that form the building blocks of applications or websites, contributing to the interactive nature of the user interface. These elements serve as user interaction points during navigation, encompassing buttons, app bars, menu options, error notifications, and checkboxes.

UI designers use These essential design components to establish a visual framework and maintain uniformity throughout their product. This results in a user-friendly experience requiring minimal navigation effort during interactions. Familiarity with the top UI elements is vital if you aim to refine your abilities and craft websites and applications that are visually enticing.

This article will provide you with a compilation of the top 30 UI elements essential for designers to be acquainted with and incorporate into their designs in 2024.

What are UI Elements?

UI Elements

UI elements refer to the fundamental components and visual building blocks that make up the user interface of a digital product, such as a website, application, or software. These elements are designed to facilitate user interaction, enhance usability, and create a seamless and intuitive experience for the user.

UI elements include buttons, icons, navigation menus, forms, checkboxes, radio buttons, sliders, tabs, modals, tooltips, and more. Each UI element serves a specific purpose, contributing to the overall functionality and aesthetics of the user interface.

Designers strategically arrange and style these elements to create a coherent and visually appealing interface that aligns with the product’s goals and user expectations.

Why Should Designers Learn About UI Elements?

Learning about UI (User Interface) elements is essential for designers due to the significant impact these elements have on the overall user experience and the success of digital products. Here’s why designers should invest time and effort in understanding UI elements:

1. Crafting a Smooth Experience

Ever used an app or a website that felt like second nature? That’s the magic of well-designed UI elements. By learning about them, you’re equipping yourself to create designs that people will love to use. Think intuitive navigation and interactions that just make sense. It’s like giving your users a virtual high-five for using your product.

2. Speaking the Visual Language

UI elements are like the vocabulary of your design language. They’re buttons, icons, forms, and more – things that people interact with. Learning this language helps you speak directly to your users, ensuring they understand where to click, what to tap, and how to explore your creation effortlessly.

3. Bringing Order to Chaos

Ever been in a room that’s super organized and everything is easy to find? That’s the role UI elements play in digital spaces. They provide structure, consistency, and a logical flow that keeps users from feeling lost. You’re essentially the interior decorator of the digital world, creating a space that’s pleasing to navigate.

4. Making Designs User-Friendly

Picture yourself designing a website. Your user has a goal – finding information or making a purchase. UI elements are your way of guiding them toward that goal. By mastering these elements, you’re like a friendly guide who takes users by the hand and helps them effortlessly reach their destination.

5. Bringing Your Creativity to Life

UI elements might sound like a set pattern but they are a canvas for creativity. You get to play with colors, shapes, sizes, and interactions to create designs that are uniquely yours. It’s like adding your own artistic flair to a familiar melody.

6. Empowering Everyone to Engage

Inclusivity is key in design. By understanding UI elements, you’re not just making things pretty; you’re making them usable by everyone, regardless of abilities. It’s like throwing open the doors of your design world and inviting everyone to join the party.

7. The Bridge Between Design and Tech

Imagine you’re the architect, and the developers are the builders. UI elements are the blueprints that you both refer to. By being well-versed in these elements, you build a stronger communication bridge, ensuring that your vision translates smoothly into the final product.

8. Fueling Your Professional Journey

Let’s face it – being a UI-savvy designer is a hot commodity. It opens doors to various projects, from app designs to website revamps. It adds a shiny feather to your professional cap, making you a sought-after creative wizard.

9. Sparking That “Aha!” Moment

Have you ever seen someone use your design and say, “Wow, that’s cool!”? That’s the “aha” moment designers live for. Learning about UI elements lets you create those delightful surprises that make users pause, smile, and appreciate the thought you’ve put into every pixel.

10. Driving User-Centered Innovation

When you delve into UI elements, you’re not just learning about buttons and menus – you’re entering a realm of user-centered innovation. Understanding how different UI elements impact user behavior and engagement allows you to brainstorm and implement creative solutions that elevate the user experience to new heights.

It’s like being a problem-solving magician, using UI components as your wand to conjure up designs that users didn’t even know they needed, but can’t imagine living without once they experience them.

Four Main Categories of UI Elements

Here are the four main categories of UI (User Interface) elements that are crucial when creating a user interface design:

1. Navigational Elements: Finding Your Way Around

Imagine you’re in a new city and need a map to explore. Navigational UI elements are like your digital map, helping users find their way around your website or app.

These are things like menus, buttons, tabs, and links. They’re the signposts that guide users through the twists and turns of your digital landscape. Just like road signs on a highway, navigational components ensure users never get lost and always know where to go.

2. Informational Elements: The Storyteller’s

Think of your UI as a storybook; informational UI elements are the words and pictures that tell the tale. These elements present vital information to users, whether it’s text, images, or icons. It’s like a tour guide sharing fascinating facts at every stop.

You’ve got headings, paragraphs, images, charts – they’re all part of this category. Informational elements ensure users understand what your product is all about without any confusion.

3. Input Controls: Making Things Happen

Let’s talk about input controls – the buttons you press, the fields you fill out, and the switches you toggle. They’re like the remote control for your user experience.

Input controls allow users to interact with your design, whether it’s submitting a form, adjusting settings, or even playing a video. It’s like handing over the reins to your users and letting them take charge of their journey through your digital world.

4. Feedback Elements: The Conversationalist’s

Imagine you’re chatting with a friend and getting instant responses – that’s what feedback UI elements do in the digital realm. They give users feedback about their actions, letting them know something’s happening.

It could be a loading spinner, a progress bar, or a friendly “Thank you!” message. Just like nodding along during a conversation, feedback elements reassure users that their interactions are being acknowledged and processed.

So, these four categories – Navigational, Informational, Input Controls, and Feedback – are like the different roles in a well-orchestrated play. They work together harmoniously to create an experience that’s smooth, engaging, and user-friendly. Whether it’s guiding users through your digital streets, narrating your product’s story, allowing interaction, or keeping the conversation going – each category plays a vital role in the grand design symphony.

Top 30 UI Elements Every Designer Should Know In 2024

Here’s a list of the top 30 UI elements that every UI designer should be familiar with and consider incorporating into their designs in 2024:

1. Buttons

Buttons

Buttons are like the friendly doers of the digital world. They’re the clickable champs that spring into action when you tap them. Whether it’s sending a message, exploring more, or making things happen, buttons are the virtual high-fivers that turn your intentions into actions with just a gentle press.

2. Menus

Menus

Menus are like your secret stash of options in the digital universe. They’re like a treasure map, hiding various choices that pop out when you need them. Tap on them, and voila! A menu unfolds, showing you a buffet of actions and destinations, guiding you through the digital landscape.

3. Forms

Forms

Forms are your digital questionnaires – a friendly way to gather info. They are digital conversations where you type in details and checkboxes, and make choices. It’s like a virtual chat with your device, sharing information and making connections, all at the tap of your fingertips.

4. Icons

Icons

Icons are like visual shortcuts in the digital world. They’re tiny superheroes that convey big meanings with a simple image. Just like road signs, they guide you without using words. From hearts for likes to envelopes for emails, icons speak a universal language that makes your web page screen come alive with meaning.

5. Typography

Typography

Typography is the art of playing with letters and words. It’s like choosing the right outfit for your text – picking fonts, sizes, and styles that express the mood and message. Just as handwriting tells a lot about a person, typography gives your words personality, making them easy to read and pleasing to the eye.

6. Images

Images

Images are the visual storytellers of digital apps and websites. They’re like snapshots frozen in time, conveying emotions, ideas, and stories with a single glance. Just as a picture speaks a thousand words, images paint your screen with colors and details, bringing life and depth to your digital experience.

7. Color Palette

Color Palette

A color palette is like a carefully curated collection of paints on an artist’s palette. It’s a set of harmonizing colors to create a specific vibe and atmosphere in your design. Just as different colors evoke different emotions, a well-chosen palette brings your web pages to life with mood and meaning.

8. Tabs

Tabs

Tabs are like handy dividers in a digital binder. They help organize content into neat sections, making it easy to flip between pages. Think of them as your virtual tour guides, leading you through different digital book chapters. With tabs, you can navigate and explore without getting lost in the digital wilderness.

9. Modals

Modals

Modals are like surprise pop-up windows in the digital world. They’re like opening a hidden door to reveal extra info or options. Imagine having a mini-conversation with your screen – modals let you interact without leaving the main page, adding an extra layer of depth and interaction to your digital experience.

10. Sliders

Sliders

Sliders are like digital volume knobs for adjusting things. They’re like the controls on a music player, letting you tweak images, settings, or values with a simple slide. Just as you turn up the volume to enjoy your favorite song, sliders allow you to fine-tune elements on your screen for a personalized experience.

11. Progress Bars

Progress Bars

Progress bars are like loading buddies on a digital road trip. They show you how far you’ve come and how much is left to reach your destination. Just as a road sign tracks your journey, progress bars assure you that your request is being processed, making the waiting game a bit more bearable.

12. Tooltips

Tooltips

Tooltips are like helpful whispers from your digital companion. A tooltip pops up when you hover over something, sharing extra info or a quick explanation. Imagine a friendly guide pointing out hidden treasures – tooltips reveal insights without overwhelming you, adding a touch of convenience to your exploration.

13. Toggle Switches

Toggle Switches

Toggle switches are like magical light switches for digital actions. Just as you flip a switch to turn on a light, you can tap a toggle to activate or deactivate a feature. They’re like digital power buttons, giving you control over settings and options, making your digital journey a more personalized experience at the flick of a finger.

14. Radio Buttons

Radio Buttons

Radio buttons are like the digital version of making a single choice. They’re like a game of “pick one” – when you select one option, others automatically unselect. Picture it as choosing your favorite candy from a selection – you can only have one, making decision-making a tad sweeter in the digital realm.

15. Checkboxes

Checkboxes

Checkboxes are like the digital equivalent of a shopping spree for options. They’re like a checklist where you can pick multiple items – just like marking items off your grocery list. With checkboxes, you can select everything you want, making it easy to customize your digital experience one tick at a time.

16. Accordions

Accordions

Accordions are like digital magic tricks that unveil hidden content. When you click, they expand to reveal more information, like opening a surprise present. Imagine an interactive peek-a-boo – accordions save space and keep your screen tidy while letting users expand deeper layers of content with a simple tap.

17. Steppers

Steppers

Steppers are like your virtual dance instructors for completing tasks step by step. They guide you through a sequence of actions, ensuring you follow each move. Picture it as a digital choreography – steppers break down complex processes into manageable, rhythmic steps, leading you to your goal with a sense of accomplishment.

18. Cards

Cards

Cards are like mini information hubs in the digital world. They’re like tiny frames that hold content – text, images, and buttons – all bundled together. Imagine having your own collection of neatly organized snapshots, each card sharing a bite-sized piece of information, creating an engaging and visually appealing layout for users to explore.

19. Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs are like your digital trail markers. They show where you’ve been on a website or app, like breadcrumbs in a forest. Think of them as a path that helps you retrace your steps, making navigation easier and ensuring you never get lost in the vast digital woods. They let users see their current location and show the hierarchy of content

20. Pagination

Pagination

Pagination is like splitting a long story into readable chapters. It divides content into manageable chunks, like turning pages in a book. Imagine a digital flipbook – pagination lets you navigate through a series of pages, ensuring you don’t get overwhelmed while enjoying the content, one page at a time.

21. Avatars

Avatars

Avatars are like your digital alter egos. They’re tiny profile pictures or icons representing you or others in the virtual world. Think of them as your visual signatures – avatars give a personal touch to your online presence, making interactions more human and helping you stand out in the digital crowd.

22. Progress Indicators

Progress Indicators

Progress indicators are like digital cheerleaders showing things happening behind the scenes. They spin, move, or fill up as tasks complete or load. Picture a waiting game with a countdown – progress indicators assure you that your request is being processed, making the anticipation a bit more bearable while adding a touch of excitement.

23. Search Bars

Search Bars

Search bars are like your personal digital detectives. They’re the go-to tool for finding specific content – just type in your query, and they’ll hunt down the information you’re seeking. Imagine a helpful friend who knows where everything is – a search bar quickly leads you to your desired destination in the vast digital landscape.

24. Tags

Tags

Tags are like virtual sticky notes for organizing content. They’re short labels that categorize or label things, creating neat little groups. Think of them as digital markers – tags help you sort through information, making it easier to find and explore specific topics or items, usually in the same category, in a clutter-free, organized manner.

25. Chips

Chips

Chips are like bite-sized nuggets of information in the digital world. They’re compact elements that display text or icons, often used for filters or selections. Imagine having a handful of mini info tokens – chips help you quickly choose options or categorize content, making your digital interaction efficient and engaging.

26. Call-to-Action (CTA) Blocks

Call-to-Action (CTA) Blocks

Call-to-Action (CTA) blocks are like friendly prompts in the digital realm that invite you to take action. They’re attention-grabbing boxes with buttons or links, encouraging you to do things like “Sign Up,” “Buy Now,” or “Learn More.” Picture them as virtual signposts, guiding you towards specific tasks and interactions, making your digital journey interactive and purposeful.

27. Navigation Bars

Navigation Bars

Navigation bars are like your digital compasses, guiding you through a website or app. They’re the top-level menus or toolbars that offer links to different sections. Think of them as your digital map – navigation bars help you explore and move around, ensuring you don’t get lost in the vast digital terrain while making your journey seamless and intuitive.

28. Feedback Messages

Feedback Messages

Feedback messages are like your digital cheerleaders, keeping you in the loop. They’re notifications or alerts that inform you about successful actions or errors. Imagine a helpful friend who pats you on the back or lends a hand when things go wrong – feedback messages give you reassurance and guidance, ensuring you’re always in the know during your digital adventures.

29. Message Boxes

Message Boxes

Message boxes are like digital notes that pop up to deliver critical information. They’re like virtual sticky messages that provide alerts, warnings, or instructions in a UI design. Imagine a friendly reminder – message boxes keep you informed and ensure you know crucial details, adding a layer of communication and clarity to your digital experience.

30. Text Fields

Text Fields

Text fields are like blank canvases for your digital words. They’re input boxes where you can type, like leaving a digital trail of your thoughts. Imagine writing a quick note – text fields let you share information, provide answers, or interact with forms, usually in a single line or multiple lines, making your digital conversations and interactions come to life with text.

Bonus UI Element: Feeds

Bonus UI Element: Feeds

Feeds are like digital newsstands, delivering a constant stream of content. They’re like a personalized magazine, displaying updates, posts, or articles that display user activity in chronological order. Imagine a never-ending scroll – feeds keep you informed and entertained, serving up a variety of content that you can browse and engage with, tailored to your interests and preferences.:

These common UI elements form the foundation of user-friendly and visually appealing designs. By mastering these elements, designers can create engaging and intuitive interfaces that cater to users’ needs and expectations in 2024 and beyond.

Bottom Line

In the vast digital design landscape, UI elements illuminate the path to seamless user experiences. Like building blocks, they create a cohesive and engaging interface, guiding users with familiarity and grace.

By mastering these elements, designers possess the keys to unlock a world of creativity and innovation, where every click, tap, and interaction becomes a harmonious melody of design and functionality. So, as you embark on your design journey, remember that UI elements are not just tools – they’re the threads that weave together the tapestry of digital brilliance.


September 26, 2023
10 min read
12 reads

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