10 Pointers for a Good UI Design
I found an awesome article that would that I felt would be extremely beneficial for my clients. It includes 55 ideas on how to improve conversion rates and make your UI designs more appealing to both businesses and people. The article was put together by professionals in the field from www.goodui.org and I wanted to share the first ten with you now. I strongly agree with many of the total list (if not all of them) and try to utilize these points in my own design.
1. Try A One Column Layout instead of multicolumns.
A one column layout will give you more control over your narrative. It should be able to guide your readers in a more predictable way from top to bottom. Whereas a multi column approach runs some additional risk of being distracting to the core purpose of a page. Guide people with a story and a prominent call to action at the end. This idea is best for conversion and ease of use.
2. Try Giving a Gift instead of closing a sale right away.
A friendly gesture such as providing a customer with a gift can be just that. Deeper underneath however, gifting is also an effective persuasion tactic that is based on the rule of reciprocity. As obvious as it sounds, being nice to someone by offering a small token of appreciation can come back in your favour down the road. This idea is best for conversions.
3. Try Merging Similar Functions instead of fragmenting the UI.
Over the course of time, it’s easy to unintentionally create multiple sections, elements and features which all perform the same function. It’s basic entropy – things start falling apart over time. Keep an eye out for duplicate functionality labelled in various ways, as it puts a strain on your customers. Often, the more UI fragmentation there is, the higher the learning curve which your customers will have to deal with. Consider refactoring your UI once in a while by merging similar functions together. This idea is best for easy of use.
4. Try Social Proof instead of talking about yourself.
Social proof is another great persuasion tactic directly applicable to increasing conversion rates. Seeing that others are endorsing you and talking about your offering, can be a great way to reinforce a call to action. Try a testimonial or showing data which proves that others are present. This idea is best for conversion.
5. Try Repeating Your Primary Action instead of showing it just once.
Repeating your call to action is a strategy that is more applicable to longer pages, or repeating across numerous pages. Surely you don’t want to have your offer displayed 10 times all on the same screen and frustrate people. However, long pages are becoming the norm and the idea of squeezing everything “above the fold” is fading. It doesn’t hurt to have one soft actionable item at the top, and another prominent one at the bottom. When people reach the bottom, they pause and think what to do next – a potential solid place to make an offer or close a deal. This idea is better for conversion.
6. Try Distinct Clickable/Selected Styles instead of blurring them.
Visual styling such as color, depth, and contrast may be used as a reliable cue to help people understand the fundamental language of navigating your interface: where am I, and where can I go. In order to communicate this clearly to your users, the styles of your clickable actions (links, buttons), selected elements (chosen items), and plain text should be clearly distinct from one another and then applied consistently across an interface. In the visual example, I’ve chosen a blue color to suggest anything that can be clicked on, and black as anything that has been selected or indicates where someone is. When applied properly, people will more easily learn and use these cues to navigate your interface. Don’t make it harder for people by blurring these three functional styles. This idea is best for conversion and ease of use.
7. Try Recommending instead of showing equal choices.
When showing multiple offers, then an emphasized product suggestion might be a good idea as some people need a little nudge. I believe there are some psychology studies out there which suggest that the more choice there is, then the lower the chances of a decision actually being made and acted upon. In order to combat such analysis paralysis, try emphasizing and highlighting certain options above others. This idea is better for conversion.
8. Try Undos instead of prompting for confirmation.
Imagine that you just pressed an action button or link. Undos respect the initial human intent by allowing the action to happen smoothly first and foremost. Prompts on the other hand suggest to the user that he or she does not know what they are doing by questioning their intent at all times. I would assume that most of the time human actions are intended and only in small situations are they accidental. The inefficiency and ugliness of prompts is visible when users have to perform actions repeatedly and are prompted numerously over and over – a dehumanizing experience. Consider making your users feel more in control by enabling the ability to undo actions and not asking for confirmation where possible. This is better for ease of use.
9. Try Telling Who It’s For instead of targeting everyone.
Are you targeting everyone or are you precise with your audience? This is a conversion idea where you could be explicit about who exactly your product or service is intended for. By communicating the qualifying criteria of your customers, you might be able to actually connect more with them while at the same time hinting at a feeling of exclusivity. The risk with this strategy of course is that you might be cutting yourself short and restricting potential customers. Then again, transparency builds trust. (Side note: Enjoying the little characters style? Please be sure to check out MicroPersonas.) This idea is best for conversion.
10. Try Being Direct instead of indecisive.
You can send your message with uncertainty trembling in your voice, or you can say it with confidence. If you’re ending your messaging with question marks, using terms such as “perhaps”, “maybe”, “interested?” and “want to?”, then most likely you have some opportunity to be a bit more authoritative. Who knows, maybe there is a bit more room for telling people what to do next in the world of conversion optimization. This idea is better for conversion.
If you are interested in reading more, you can once again for the entire article here. If you are looking to build a new website or web app, I highly recomend looking through these tips to optimize your site immediately. Know any other good resources on the subject? Please feel free to share them.