A design system is a set of guidelines and brand tools that makes it easier to create, test, and update the visual aspects of goods while guaranteeing user interface consistency.
This is if you try to define design system services in one sentence. Everything is a little more complicated. All team members, both designers, and developers, can refer to this system as a law that helps to understand the level of product consistency and control the variety of approaches and solutions to various design problems.
Collected in one place, these rules are a kind of “desktop encyclopedia” for team members, avoiding disputes between designers when choosing a color or font and saving developers time.
What does a design system consist of?
When you think about Nike or Coca-Cola, what comes to mind? This is the language of the eye, or what we see. Its responsibility is to communicate to the consumer the brand’s values. As a result, the visual language must incorporate a set of rules that clients will use to guide their selections.
A framework is a collection of programs, libraries, and premade components that serves as the technical implementation of what belongs in a visual language. A framework imposes a predefined programming style instead of a library offering a collection of pre-made solutions.
- Streamlines and expedites the procedure. The majority of necessary parts are included in the framework, enabling you to easily develop a new interface without worrying about compatibility.
- Enables the development of a single visual style. Any graphic component can easily be used on different products to maintain consistency.
- It enables you to create clean code that won’t need to be updated afterward. It’s crucial that a project can be immediately understood by someone who hasn’t worked on it before.
Sometimes this system is confused with a guideline, but the guideline is just one of the elements of the system. Traditionally, a policy is a static element, an analogue of a brand book, where the basic rules for working on a project are fixed. It consists of instructions and standards of the visual language, advice on text style, and arrangement of elements relative to each other.
Why do you require a design system?
The development of this system is a time-consuming, expensive process that calls for collaboration. However, does the game merit the candle? We are aware of the issues that design systems can assist in resolving.
Using the library of components and elements allows you to systematize the existing developments. At the same time, everything in the interface should be systematized, and designers and developers should have access to a single knowledge base.
Simplify and speed up processes
With a design system in place, designers can create new elements based on a given visual language, and developers know exactly how to implement them.
Make life easier for the user
The unified design of all brand services makes it easier for the user to get acquainted with the product or service: the client intuitively understands where to wait for which blocks and how they will look. If the user was previously familiar with at least one of the company’s services, it would be easier to get acquainted with others since it would not take much time to study them.
A single submission of information reduces the entry threshold and the likelihood that the client will go to competitors without understanding the service.
Who needs a design system?
Typically, design systems are needed for large products that are regularly updated or launch new services. Banks, travel services, airlines, and large companies have them. Any tool needs to be applied where it is needed.
Otherwise, you can spend a lot of time and resources on something that simply does not pay off. A design system is required to solve the problems of unifying many elements, supporting them, increasing the speed of launching complex products, and synchronizing the UX patterns of different teams.
Design systems are no longer only an idea or a theory. Component-based development is a tried-and-true method for achieving design scalability to keep up with rapidly evolving technologies.