Wireframe: Why It Should Be Part of The Creative Process

Published On:

By safikul

Web developers can be complicated people. After all, they use techniques that seem unnecessary to those who are not from the area. If you are starting now, you may have heard, for example, the term wireframe – and maybe even familiarity with the concept.

This does not stop you from wondering why they are an important part of the creative process. The truth is that often the use of wireframes separates the good designs from those that go straight to the bottom of the drawer. This planning step is often the difference between an end-user executable product and a beautiful, yet useless layout.

So, in today’s article, you will understand what a wireframe is, how to do it and what its function in web development projects.

What is a wireframe?

A wireframe is “an image, or set of images, that displays the functional elements of a site or page and is used to plan the structure and functionality of it.” But we do not need to stick to the dictionary explanation to define what a wireframe is. Think of it as a simple draft of your website or application. This draft helps designers, customers, and developers align their project expectations. It establishes the relationship between the content, pages, elements, and functionality of a prototype. Its main feature is the ability to evidence what works.

Imagine that you want to acquire a property, although it has not yet been built. To give you an idea of how it will be built, the broker has two options: show you a plan, with the basic drawing of the property or lead you to a similar construction. The plant would be the wireframe, while the building would approach more of a mockup.

How are wireframes made?

Wireframes can be made in several ways. Before you start experimenting on your own, check out some examples on the internet. So, you can be inspired to create your own and get an idea of the variety of ways you can do it. Some people like to draw their wireframes by hand, while others feel more comfortable using software like Adobe Illustrator. There are also applications built exclusively for this function.

It is you who makes all the decisions about how you will make your first wireframe. However, when deciding on the creation process, keep in mind the following:

  • Frames drawn with paper and pencils have the advantage of being much easier to change, which can help in the first conversations about a site or product.
  • Using paper prototypes, you can test with end users all phases of a design. In these steps, the changes are easier and cheaper than changes whose need is only noticed after the beginning of development.
  • Migrating to specific software later will allow you to develop interactive wireframes that will help your customer better understand the features of an app.

When are wireframes necessary?

Ignoring the wireframe and going straight to prototyping can be synonymous with problem, as we have already mentioned here. But do you know when it’s best to create a wireframe or go straight to the mockups?Experience teaches that interactive prototyping is not always the most appropriate delivery. Imagine that you are creating a corporate app and it proves to be inefficient and needs a critical design fix. Your customer probably needs to see an alternative as soon as
possible and you know that an improved interface can solve the problem.

The extra cost of creating a mockup would unnecessarily increase the budget and delay the project. Already a simple draft would be enough to explain the change for both client and developer. In this scenario, wireframing drops like a glove.The choice of whether or not to wireframe in general should consider how much time and money a team has and at what stage of the project it is in. If there are resources for an interactive mockup, it is likely that the wireframe will save time in its development. If a project is already in place when a change is requested, on the other hand, there is no time to create new wireframes.

However, whenever you detect in your audience the difficulty of understanding a project, choose to include a wireframe in your plans. It will simplify your first conversation about a website, app or layout and help everyone involved get together around an idea.
Check out our tips on how to do a layout and understand better when wireframes may be needed.

What are the functions of the wireframe in the creative process?
Wireframes have a number of functions, among which:

1. Exemplify the visual architecture of a layout

While a site map may be impalpable, the wireframe is concrete and initiates the visual process of a project. It transforms the abstract nature of lists and flowcharts into something real and tangible without distractions.So, it’s the most important part in the stage where developers, customer and designer align their expectations.

2. Clarify questions about a project’s resources

In many cases, clients may not understand what you mean when you use expressions such as “product filtering” or ” lightboxes.” The wireframe clarifies these doubts. It is a way to communicate clearly to the customer how each of these features works, where they are located, and how they can be useful.

3. Make the creation process more interactive

Wireframes ensure that you do not have to make functionality, layout and branding decisions in one step. This allows customers (and developers) to provide feedback to the designer from the beginning of the project.Ignoring the wireframe can increase the cost of changes. In later stages, complete layouts should be redesigned, not just simple design drafts.

4. Generate time savings

Wireframes save time in several ways. It makes your project more well-calculated, makes the team of developers understand well what they are building before they start writing the code and makes content creation clearer.When all the members of a team are in tune, they help save time and, in most situations, resources.

5. Make it clear what works

Building a website or application is a process. And the creation of wireframes is part of that journey. As you add and remove elements of a given layout during wireframing, you will be able to find out what works best for the current project.


In the process of developing a website besides Graphic Design (the full color layout you make in the PSD) there may also be other parts like Information Architecture, UX, etc. If you have not heard about it, you will probably hear it when you will consult any good web development company. If you’ve never used one, you’ll probably use it. Because a designer, especially if you’re a freelancer, is much more than using Photoshop or Illustrator. You are a designer: you must know how to plan what will be done and how to be done.

About safikul

Safikul Islam is a professional Software Engineer with vast experience in research and development field. Presently, He Works for eLiveStory. He also has a strong passion for writing creative blogs and articles about fashion, new technology,Jewelry and following the latest trends in these areas.

Leave a Comment