Splash Screen

Splash Screen: Enhancing First Impressions in UX Design

A splash screen is a user interface element that appears when an application or website is launched. It typically displays for a few seconds while the app loads and initializes, providing a visual first impression and setting the tone for the user experience. Effective splash screen design can enhance branding, engage users, and improve perceived performance.

What is a Splash Screen?

A splash screen is a full-screen graphical element displayed when an app or website is loading. It usually features branding elements like logos, taglines, and animations. The primary purpose is to entertain or inform users while the background processes are completed, ensuring a smooth transition into the main content.

Importance of Splash Screens in UX Design

  1. First Impressions: Splash screens create the first visual interaction with the user, making it crucial for setting a positive tone and reinforcing brand identity.
  2. User Engagement: A well-designed splash screen can engage users with appealing visuals and animations, enhancing their overall experience.
  3. Perceived Performance: By displaying a splash screen during loading, the perceived performance of the app can be improved, as users are less likely to notice the wait time.
  4. Brand Recognition: Consistent use of logos, colors, and taglines reinforces brand identity and increases recognition.
  5. Transition Smoothness: Splash screens provide a smooth transition from the app launch to the main interface, improving usability and user flow.

Key Elements of an Effective Splash Screen

  1. Branding: Incorporate essential branding elements such as the logo, company name, and tagline to reinforce brand identity.
  2. Animation: Use subtle animations to make the splash screen visually appealing and to convey a sense of progress.
  3. Duration: Ensure the splash screen displays for an appropriate amount of time, ideally just long enough to cover the app’s loading time without causing unnecessary delay.
  4. Visual Appeal: Design the splash screen to be aesthetically pleasing and aligned with the overall app design to create a cohesive user experience.
  5. Loading Indicators: Include loading indicators to inform users that the app is in the process of starting up, reducing uncertainty.

Best Practices for Designing Splash Screens

  1. Keep It Simple: Avoid cluttering the splash screen with too much information. Focus on key branding elements and a clean design.
  2. Optimize Loading Time: Ensure that the app loads as quickly as possible, minimizing the time users spend on the splash screen.
  3. Responsive Design: Design splash screens that work well across different devices and screen sizes, ensuring a consistent experience for all users.
  4. Test Performance: Conduct performance testing to ensure that the splash screen does not negatively impact the app’s loading time or user experience.
  5. User Feedback: Gather user feedback on the splash screen to understand its impact and make necessary adjustments to improve its effectiveness.

Tools for Creating Splash Screens

  1. Adobe After Effects: Ideal for creating detailed animations and visual effects for splash screens.
  2. Sketch: A versatile design tool for creating static and animated splash screen designs.
  3. Figma: Allows for collaborative design and prototyping of splash screens with real-time feedback.
  4. Lottie: A library for rendering animations created in Adobe After Effects in real-time, useful for integrating animations into mobile apps.
  5. Flutter: A UI toolkit from Google for building natively compiled applications, which includes capabilities for designing and implementing splash screens.

Real-World Examples

  1. Instagram: Uses a simple, clean splash screen with its logo and a subtle animation to engage users while the app loads.
  2. Nike Run Club: Features a dynamic splash screen with the Nike logo and a brief animation that aligns with the brand’s energetic and athletic image.
  3. Spotify: Displays its logo against a solid background color, maintaining brand consistency and simplicity during app startup.
  4. Uber: Uses a minimalistic splash screen with the Uber logo, reinforcing its brand identity while ensuring quick loading times.
  5. Airbnb: Incorporates a visually appealing splash screen with animations and the Airbnb logo, setting a welcoming tone for users.


Splash screens play a vital role in shaping the initial user experience and reinforcing brand identity. By focusing on key elements like branding, animation, and visual appeal, designers can create effective splash screens that enhance user engagement and improve perceived performance. Implementing best practices and using the right tools ensures that splash screens contribute positively to the overall user experience, making a lasting first impression.

Ondrej Zoricak
Ondrej Zoricak