How to create amazing app mockups

If you have an app, then you probably have a marketing website, or want to share it on social media. But how do you create amazing mockups that make people want to sign-up?

In this article we share how you can do just that, even if you don’t have any design skills or fancy software.

Step 1: Take screenshots

First, you need to screenshot the images you want to use. This is simple enough but make sure the image ratio and quality are right, so it'll look good later. A foolproof way is to use your smartphone.

Using your smartphone

Open the app on your smartphone and simply screenshot the required screens. The image ratio will be exactly the same as your phone, which is perfect for adding a frame later. Also, because most smartphones have high resolution screens, the images will be crisp.

The only potential downside of using your smartphone is if you want an image that’s a different size to your device, which brings us on to the alternative…

Using your laptop or PC

If you can open your app in a web browser (i.e. a web app) then you can take screenshots on your laptop or PC. This gives you a lot more options in terms of the image ratio. The image quality might be lower than your smartphone but it usually won’t be noticeable in the end result.

To take mobile screenshots on your laptop or PC, open the app/web page in Google Chrome. Go to the browser menu in the top right-hand corner and select > More Tools > Developer Tools.

How to open Developer Tools in Google Chrome.

Now, you can preview your app in a range of device sizes.

Previewing a web app in the Developer Tools.

Select your preferred device size, and grab the required screenshots.

Step 2: Add a frame

Next, you need to add the frame you want to use.

We use MockUPhone to create phone mockups like this:

We use MockUPhone for phone mockups.

And Placeit to create action mockups like this:

Placeit is great for creating "action" mockups like this.

Select your favourite frames, paying attention to the image ratio. For example, if you used an iPhone SE to capture your screenshots, then you'll select the iPhone SE frame, as the image ratio will match perfectly.

Upload your images to the frame, download it, and voila!

Bonus: Optimize images for your website

If you’re uploading the mockups to your website, then you should optimize the image. Why? Because your website will load quicker meaning visitors are more likely to see and engage with your content. We aim for less than 200KB per mockup.

Here's a useful guide from WP Beginner. If you don't have an image editor, then check out BeFunky - they have a free plan and there's nothing to download.