The main UI design elements

The main UI design elements
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In our comprehensive UI/UX design guide we had briefly described the main UI design elements. But as UI/UX design agency, Syndicode can’t just leave it like that. We want to dive into details and deliver the maximum information on the topic. 

To start with, you have to understand that from the moment of UI/UX design establishment, users have already become familiar with the scope of UI elements that are acting in a certain way. Make sure that you use and place these elements in an appropriate way. They must facilitate task completion, design efficiency, and user satisfaction. User interface elements include buttons, text fields, checkboxes, sliders, icons, tags, message boxes, pagination etc. But let’s see the descriptions and the roles they perform to improve user experience.

As we wrote in our UI/UX guide, the main Interface Design elements include but are not limited to:

Input Controls

  • Сheckboxes
    • Checkboxes allow the user to select one or more options from a set. It is usually best to present checkboxes in a vertical list. More than one column is acceptable as well if the list is long enough that it might require scrolling or if the comparison of terms might be necessary.
  • Radio buttons
    • Radio buttons are used to allow users to select one item at a time.
  • Dropdown lists
    • Dropdown lists allow users to select one item at a time, similarly to radio buttons but are more compact allowing you to save space. Consider adding text to the field, such as ‘Select one’ to help the user recognize the necessary action. Some people consider them rather irritating than useful. But this really depends on a purpose and context.
  • List boxes
    • List boxes, like checkboxes, allow users to select multiple items at a time, but are more compact and can support a long list of options if needed.
  • Buttons
    • A button indicates an action upon touch and is typically labeled using text, an icon, or both. The dropdown button consists of a button that when clicked displays a drop-down list of mutually exclusive items.
  • Toggles
    • A toggle button allows the user to change a setting between two states. They are most effective when the on/off states are visually distinct.
  • Text fields
    • Text fields allow users to enter text. It can allow either a single line or multiple lines of text.
  • Date field
    • A date picker allows users to select a date and/or time. By using the picker, the information is consistently formatted and input into the system. The same picker is used for time.

Navigational Components

  • Breadcrumb
    • Breadcrumbs allow users to identify their current location within the system by providing a clickable trail of proceeding pages to navigate by.
  • Search field
    • Basically, this is a search box allows users to enter a keyword or phrase (query) and submit it to search the index with the intention of getting back the most relevant results. Typically search fields are single-line text boxes and are often accompanied by a search button.
  • Pagination
    • Pagination divides content up between pages and allows users to skip between pages or go in order through the content.
  • Slider
    • A slider, also known as a track bar, allows users to set or adjust a value. When the user changes the value, it does not change the format of the interface or other info on the screen.
  • Tags
    • Tags allow users to find content in the same category. Some tagging systems also allow users to apply their own tags to content by entering them into the system.
  • Icons
    • An icon is a simplified image serving as an intuitive symbol that is used to help users to navigate the system. Typically, icons are hyperlinked.
  • Image carousel
    • Image carousels allow users to browse through a set of items and make a selection of one if they so choose. Typically, the images are hyperlinked. Make sure they do not automatically rotate very fast.

Informational Components

  • Tooltips
    • A tooltip allows a user to see hints when they hover over an item indicating the name or purpose of the item.
  • Icons
    • Here icons serve the purpose of providing the users with the information about what’s hidden behind and what might happen if the user will press an icon.
  • Progress bar
    • A progress bar indicates where a user is as they advance through a series of steps in a process. Typically, progress bars are not clickable.
  • Notifications
    • A notification is an update message that announces something new for the user to see. Notifications are typically used to indicate items such as the successful completion of a task, or an error or warning message.
  • Message boxes
    • A message box is a small window that provides information to users and requires them to take an action before they can move forward.
  • Modal windows (Pop-up)
    • A modal window requires users to interact with it in some way before they can return to the system. However, using pop-ups it is recognized as one of the most annoying UI techniques.


  • Accordion
    • An accordion is a vertically stacked list of items that utilize show/ hide functionality. When a label is clicked, it expands the section showing the content within. There can have one or more items showing at a time and may have default states that reveal one or more sections without the user clicking.

Now you can understand the purposes for every UI design element. Find more information about design on Syndicode blog!

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