Marvel: A Simple Solution for Quick Prototyping
July 07, 2019

Marvel: A Simple Solution for Quick Prototyping

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Marvel

At my company and in my own freelance business, I use Marvel to create very quick web and mobile prototypes to show initial designs and workflows to stakeholders. Marvel enables me to do this in a low stakes way early in the design process because I can get targeted feedback before building designs in deeper, more complicated ways without having to spend a ton of time and energy on the initial design. Specifically, Marvel is my go-to when I have very little time to get an initial design to a stakeholder. In the past, time crunches meant giving stakeholders PowerPoint slides, because that method of presenting design workflows felt quickest. With Marvel, I can present more realistic and effective prototypes to stakeholders in about the same amount of time.
  • Provides design specifications, making it very easy to give specific CSS style guides to developers.
  • Very sleek and intuitive design, enabling a very quick learning curve for new users.
  • Most features are free, which makes this product especially useful for new designers, students, and nonprofits.
  • Web-based, so users can access the app anywhere with an internet connection.
  • Link sharing makes it very easy to share designs directly with stakeholders.
  • No annotation options, so designers have to find a method outside of the app to communicate notes about specific parts of designs.
  • No offline option. This is the primary reason why my company won’t purchase the paid version since some of our team works in areas with less stable internet access
  • Limited animation functionalities, which limits the ability to create truly realistic prototypes for more complicated designs.
  • Editing in the mobile app can be finicky, which might make this a less desirable tool for those who want to iterate upon designs on the go.
  • Saves time and money early in the design process. Designers can quickly and affordably create simple prototypes to get feedback on before creating more complex, more time-intensive designs.
  • Enables designers to present somewhat realistic designs to gain buy-in from stakeholders and clients. This has led us to gain support and funding for projects easier than when we would present design workflows using PowerPoint presentations.
  • Saves time onboarding to a new tool. Marvel’s very simple and intuitive design means less time figuring out the tool and more time actually designing.
Marvel isn’t the most robust prototyping tool, but its simplicity is what makes the tool rise to the top when it comes to creating quick, simple prototypes to elicit feedback on designs and iterate upon them. While tools like InVision and Axure provide many tools to make more realistic, animation-heavy designs, Marvel is a go-to for a simple interface that enables designers to “just design.” Sometimes it is not necessary to have all of the bells and whistles of a stronger tool, particularly when a designer is low on time. Marvel’s simplicity allows designers to quickly design and iterate in time crunches without the distractions of fancy bells and whistles.
Marvel is a very strong tool in scenarios where designers seek to quickly create simple prototypes on their desktops using a simple, intuitive interface. It offers “just enough” functionality to create somewhat realistic designs to present to stakeholders and other designers. However, there’s a limit to how “realistic” those designs can be, given that Marvel has somewhat limited functionality around animations. Marvel is not a strong option for those who want to create very complex prototypes with many animations, or for those who want to edit prototypes on their tablet or phone. Marvel is a jewel for simplicity but starts to be difficult to use when creating complicated designs. For creating more complicated prototypes, I would recommend a more robust tool, such as Axure.