Web designing of a site is considered best when users are enabled to complete the task on that site effortlessly. The designer who does not attract undue attention towards the design is said to be proficient in his/her job. People are always interested in taste of food they have been served and not the methods or tools which have been deployed in preparing it. Similarly, users are keen to use the site and not to dive into the designing part.In other words, designing can be called flawless if users accomplish their task without getting undue attention towards any part of designing.
Designers should not leave any stone unturned to make the best website but the lesser users think about designer or design, the better it is. This implies that user is satisfied and happy with the site, which is not possible without a good design.
There are ample of things around us whose creation marked history but the world has forgotten who first created them.
Designers across many fields such as user experience should make this ideology their guiding star. Keeping your work invisible will help you outshine the competition.
Let us further explain our point by discussing some illustrations of invisible UX optimizations. The best part remains the fact that users never think about them.
A group of scientists at Harvard Business School recently conducted a study to comprehend the psychology of being made to wait when websites are loading. Majority of us think that being made to wait while the website opens up is a bad thing. Slower or delayed loading times are generally associated with bad user experience but the findings of the study did not concur.
In this study, the team of scientists worked around a popular travel booking site. Motive was to recreate and rebrand the site, therefore, different versions of it were presented to the participants. Each one of the participant was instructed to search and book the same holiday for themselves. Later their opinions were recorded, only after successfully completing the transaction.
While some users were provided with their search results immediately, others were made to wait deliberately for 10 seconds to 1 minute. More users who were made to wait were shown a progress bar and some of them were shown a visual display of the processes undertaken by the services for explaining the delay on their part.
Results of this study take many stakeholders by surprise. Participants who were made to wait but were given an explanation favored the site the most. Their number was even larger than the users who were shown the search results instantaneously.
And that is not all about the labor illusion. There are some more very strong evidences of exemplifying simple and best-at-work UX design.
A dating site this time served as the ground of experiment for researchers. Some users were cautiously made to wait for finding their perfect match. Surprisingly, they were positive about using the dating site as they were exposed to a transparent process about why it is taking time to get response.
This is what ultimately led to the introduction of the term labor illusion. It is a concept that nullifies the need of responding immediately to the users. It is though important to understand here that there is a thin line between it and operational transparency. Even if it does not take too long for the site to perform, the delayed time can create an impression in the mind of users that value is being added. There is nothing wrong with telling the users that the system is making serious attempts to fulfill their requirement.
Getting too quick of response might make the users apprehensive about the search results.
List of magical difference created by user experience design and development cannot be completed without mention of Airbnb website. This accommodation service skyrocket the user experience and satisfaction with a simple thing which is beyond your imagination.
On surface it appears to be a simple thing. Users just enter the name of the place where they intend to stay and potential hosts come up in the search result. Sounds easy? But do you have any idea how much of labor from techno-proficient gives you the end result?
There is a lot of skills and enormous technology involved. Airbnb taking one step ahead of its competition, caters to the needs of both guests and hosts. Here, a host has got the authority to say no to request from a user due to unavailability of room on said date and timings and amount of notice provided etc.
As Airbnb is serving to both the sides, host and guest, it found a midway to keep two of them happy in machine learning. It was in 2015 when the service company implemented machine learning to predict about the preferences of a host and kind of requests it would likely to accept. This would help the company to save guests from feeling dejected as its requests get repeatedly denied. This makes the whole process easier for the hosts too. As hosts give their individual preferences and machine learning takes it to the next level, they do not get nagged by the constant flow of requests which are irrelevant and unwanted to them.
In order to meet the ultimate goals, Airbnb’s machine learning model pays heed to the details related to every host’s request acceptance and rejection. Over time, the data is gathered to be analyzed to make predictions about the type of requests that are likely to be accepted. Accordingly, the potential guest in quest of a place to get accommodated is shown only those hosts who possibly accept the user’s request. It takes data collection, mathematical weighting and complicated algorithms to act in synch for matching Airbnb’s users and hosts.
Whether it is UX development or designing, it is about affecting user experiences without coming into users’ notice. This can obviously improve the user experience but at the same time, there are some deceitful UX designers that attempt to use hidden secrets of UX. They manipulate or trick users for signing up for services without realizing it. There is much more about dark UX techniques.
Visitors on a site can be tricked to skim-read content or hit the continue button without their consent. Even users are reeled into a free trial that ceremoniously gets converted into a paid subscription which cannot be canceled.
Users can of course, summon the companies and designers deploying dark UX techniques. It was not very old incidence when LinkedIn was found guilty of email spamming in 2015. You might not know that the company was levied upon penalty canceled of $13 million.
It is highly imperative for any UX designer or company employing UX techniques that they conduct and promote only ethical practices in market. There is no harm to spearhead your business operations with UX tips and tricks. But there is a clear difference between adding value to your product and tempering with the visitors’ interest on your site.