Mockups and PSD mockups are used by a myriad of industries for every kind of product and service that one could imagine. There are as many different types of product mockups as there are products on the market and greatly benefit a design team’s development process in the production of its physical attributes and interface. It is important to understand where different types of product mockups fit into the design process using Photoshop PSD mockup design templates or similar, as well as how they can be used to improve the performance of the finished product at market.
Mockup Design Process
A mockup comes as the second step in a three-step design process. It is, arguably, the most important step in determining the final user interface (UI) experience of any product, before it goes into full physical or coding production. Mockups play a leading role in a products portrayal to administrators, stakeholders, and investors as it is the final stage in determining the overall design feature variations of a product. It provides the closest example for how the finished product will look. Before creating a mockup, the first stage of the design process is to create a product wireframe.
Product wireframes and mockups are often mistaken as each other; however, wireframes are only a skeleton of a product, whereas, mockups are the skeleton, muscles, organs and features. Wireframes are the foundational product construct, which comprises the raw elements that provide functionality and user interface to the mockup. Often, they are black and white and may begin as a hand sketched design.
For an online based product, such as an app or website the product wireframe will begin as a basic physical layout. It will most likely depict menu buttons, image scrollers, content placement, widgets, and more. Every element that the user will interact with is placed in the wireframe. For example, a wireframe would include the image scroller’s position and size, but would not include images. As a rule of thumb, wireframes are used for structure—not content.
A product mockup implements design aesthetics and content into the wireframe. The product mockup is the fun part. This is the stage where designers customize color schemes, graphics, logos, and more. Mockups are far from the finished product; however, they provide a medium in which to test features and implement changes, without working through extensive coding or physical manufacturing. For physical product mockups, the alternative is to manufacture a new physical model, every time there is a change in the design concept. By using digital product mockups, project design teams save time and money, by implementing progressive changes into a high quality digital, interactive product representation.
Mockups are largely representative, as opposed to interactive. For an app or website, the mockup might show where a linked button is and exactly what it looks like, but it isn’t a real button.
The final stage that a product goes through before going to market is the prototype. A prototype takes a mockup and puts it into the world of user interface. Though it is still aesthetically customizable, all of the necessary functionality will be more or less set in stone. One defining feature of a prototype is that the user interface is complete and functional, as it will be on the finished product. A mockup serves to help teams identify the user interface fundamentals, while the prototype gives insight to predict and solve issues as they are identified.
Product Mockups-Types and Design
Product mockups come in many types of design variation. Numerous usability features and creative branding elements play a part in a mockups design type. In the end, most teams end up trying a number of mockups before they determine the best fit for the product it features.
The traditional method of design and development work is to create a physical mockup by hand. If your product is a wine bottle, a designer would create a mockup out of a material that is easier to work with such as clay. This can be done relatively quickly for a small product; however, things become more difficult when the products grow in size.
The same is true with a mockup for a product online, especially for user interface-based products. Drawing a sketch of all the ways in which a website interfaces with its internal pages, as well as the redirecting which occurs online would get arduous. Luckily, computer technology has changed the way in which people can produce product mockups for projects of great size and complication.
A digital mockup features all of the attributes of a physical mockup, except it exists on a virtual interface. For products that are internet based, this would seem obvious. However, mockups can be rendered digitally and for physical products as well. Using a digital interface to create a product mockup is, by far and away, more beneficial to design teams involved in the product’s development process. Changes and amendments to design and interface features are able to be made quickly and concisely for many different types of products.
In this day and age, e-commerce is, more and more, dominating the retail sales industry, along with many other goods and service based business. Take, for instance, a brick and mortar clothing retailer as opposed to an online clothing retailer. The physical store will likely have mannequins to display some of the featured apparel offered. With an online store, a product example is still required; however, there is no need for a physical model. Different types of product mockups will allow items to be displayed in many ways.
Still Image Mockups
For still images and portraits, you are able to display your product, via a downloadable mockup template. Simply upload your product image and place it in whatever type of product mockup that fits your needs. These still image mockups offer an alternative to costly and time-consuming photo shoots and graphic rendering. Instead of spending the time and money to find a location, hire a photographer and perform a shoot, product mockups offer pre-made templates, in which you can drag-and-drop your product image.
Moving Image Mockups
By far the most popular type of product mockups are moving images. These offer a range of possibilities for many types of products. Many products are built for use with a smart mobile device or computer. These moving image product mockups give users the ability to upload the images that correspond to each page of a website or app and load them into a mockup template, showing the app mockup in use. These might feature a user’s hand and fingers moving across an iPhone or iPad screen, simulating the app in use. Alternatively, you might upload your company’s logo into a moving image product mockup for a MacBook, which features a panning camera focused on a MacBook, which displays the logo or video clip of your choice.
Several types of product mockups simulate the interaction or user interface which will be experienced in the real world. They can be invaluable for many online developers and e-commerce businesses, due to their economy, efficiency, and effectiveness.
Check out some of the product mockups offered at DropMock to find out how a product mockup might benefit your project. DropMock offers thousands of different image and video templates for still images as well as moving image mockups. They have a simple to do three step process.
First, choose the scene you feel will best match your video or image needs and then drop the image, video, or even audio into the DropMock template you have chosen. Finally, it takes just one click to weave your content into the video or image mockup you have chosen. You will see professional and high-quality results and it does not require any particular skills or training to use and implement quickly and efficiently.