Creating Prototypes

Figma’s Prototyping features allow you to create interactive flows that simulate how a user may interact with your designs.

Tip! If you’re new to Prototyping, we recommend checking out our Getting Started with Prototyping and Creating a Prototype articles first. They give you a good overview of how the Prototyping process works in Figma!

In this article, we'll step you through the process of creating a Prototype:

  1. Build your Prototype.
  2. Advanced Prototyping with Scrolling Overflow.
  3. Customize your Prototype Settings.
  4. View your Prototype.

Check out the video below for a summary of the entire Prototyping process, and keep reading!

1 | Build your Prototype

To build a Prototype, you’ll need to have your designs arranged into distinct Frames within a single File.

We recommend checking out our Getting Started With Prototyping article first. This article has detailed explanations and examples for each Trigger, Action and Transition available.

Create a Connection

  1. Switch to the Prototype tab in the Properties Panel:

  2. Find the first Frame that you want to use in your Prototype.
  3. Select a Layer, Group, Frame or Object within that Frame. You can create a Hotspot from any object within a Frame, or even from the top-level Frame itself.

    A circular prototyping node will appear on the right-hand side of the object:
  4. Click and drag the node to the Frame you'd like to connect it to - this will be the Destination Frame.

    A blue arrow will establish the Connection:

Customize the Connection

You can then customize the Connection, using the fields in the Prototype tab.

Tip! Our Getting Started With Prototyping article has detailed explanations for each Trigger, Action and Transition available.

  1. Use the Trigger field to determine what interaction from the user will trigger the Prototype to move from one Frame to the other:
  2. In the Action section, you can choose how you want the Prototype to progress.

    If you have already established a connection between two Frames, then the Destination Frame will be shown here.

    Otherwise, you can select another option from the drop-down provided:  

  3. Select the Type of Action from the button's provided. You can choose between Navigate, Swap, and Overlay
  4. Check the box provided if you want to Preserve Scroll Position. This allows you to maintain the same scroll position/depth when moving between two Frames. 
  5. Select the Transition you'd like to use from the options. You'll see a preview below that shows you what to expect: Tip! You can hover over the Preview window to see a preview of the Transition!
  6. Depending on the Transition you selected, you may also have some additional settings available: 
    1. Set the Direction you'd like the Frame to enter in. 
    2. Apply any Easing to the Transition. Easing will slow down the transition, either at the beginning, the end, or at both the beginning and end. 
    3. Set the Duration. The minimum is 1ms and the maximum is 10,000ms (10 seconds).

You can then repeat the process above for any other interactions you'd like to simulate.

Remove and Delete Connections

You can remove (or delete) a connection that you've created, while in Prototyping mode, using any of the following methods:

  1. Click on the Connection Arrow and drag it to an empty part of the canvas:
  2. Select the arrow and use the Delete key on your keyboard to remove: 
  3. To remove all connections, right-click on a blank area in the canvas and select Remove all Connections from the menu: 

2 | Prototyping with Scroll Overflow

If you're building more complex or fully developed Prototypes, then you will likely need to experiment with Scrolling Overflow.

This allows you to simulate more advanced user interactions, like navigating carousels, photo galleries or libraries, and interactive maps; making your prototypes even more authentic.

You can apply the following Scrolling Overflow settings to Frames within your Prototype:

  • Horizontal
  • Vertical
  • Horizontal and Vertical

Check out our Advanced Prototyping with Scroll Overflow article, for detailed instructions and examples of how this can be used.

3 | Customize your Prototype Settings

To help make your Prototype look like the real deal, you can customize the way it is presented.

In your Prototype Settings, you can set the:

  • Device
  • Orientation
  • Background Color
  • Starting Frame

Check out our Prototype Settings article for more information on how to update your Prototype Settings.

4 | View your Prototype

When you're ready to view, present or share your Prototype, you can use Presentation View to show it to the world.

Our Viewing Prototypes in Presentation View article steps you through the whole presentation process.

This covers everything you need to know about sharing your designs:

  • Using Scale modes to ensure your Prototype fits nicely on your screen.
  • Engaging Full screen mode for a clean, minimal interface.
  • Using Observation Mode when presenting as a team.
  • How to Share Prototypes via Desktop and Mobile.
  • How to post and manage Comments on Prototypes.
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