To the front pageThe Interaction Designer's Coffee Break - Weekly postings and quarterly articles about interaction design  
  To the front pageSign inTo the frontpageSearch in GUUUI postingsAbout GUUUI  




7 persuasion techniques

In this article, David Travis shows how to exploit seven persuasion techniques in web design:

- Reciprocation. By doing people a small favour, such as a giving them free chapter from a book, they will feel obligated to return the favour and buy the book.

- Commitment. By making people make a public commitment to something (e.g. "Like" a product) they will feel more inclined to support it

- Social Proof. By indicating that something is popular more people will want it.

- Authority. People are more likely to take action if a message comes from a credible and authoritative source.

- Scarcity. By indicating that something is in short supply or available only for a limited time, people are more likely to want it.

- Framing. By overpricing some products, the other alternatives will seem cheaper.

- Salience. People are more likely to pay attention to elements in your user interface that are novel and relevant to their tasks.


  • Persuasion Triggers in Web Design Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - December 10, 2010

Permanent link Comments (1)



How to do A/B and multivariate testing

A/B and multivariate testing are techniques used to tests how different design variations influence peoples' behavior on a website.

In this article, Paras Chopra explains how to set up such tests by first forming hypotheses about what might be wrong with a design and then testing possible solutions on the website to see how each of them perform.

In the article, Paras shows how some minor adjustments of a software download page increased its download rate by 60%.


  • Multivariate Testing in Action: Five Simple Steps to Increase Conversion Rates Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - November 24, 2010

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Usability testing (71) 



How persuasive design is misapplied

According to Colleen Jones, there are three things wrong with how persuasive design is currently applied:

1. It focuses on changing actions and behaviors though we all know that decisions are more or less based on opinion, attitude and emotion.

2. It doesn't address content which can influence people's thinking and motivate them to act

3. It focuses on optimizing design for conversion by pushing people along with sneaky tricks instead of motivating those with true interest


  • Three Reasons Why Persuasive Design Isn't Enough to Influence Change Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - September 21, 2010

Permanent link Comments (0)



Adding fun to the user experience

In this article, Jared Spool looks at how four businesses made their products more fun and engaging by adding elements of play to the user experience.


  • Designing with the Elements of Play Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - April 19, 2010

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Emotional design (10)  Cases and Examples (28) 



How usability tests are put together determines the outcome

In this article, Bryan Eisenberg makes an interesting comparison between and According UIE, outperforms Newport News when people are looking for particularly products. But in spite of its lower traffic and reach, Newport News rank higher in terms of revenue.

Why this difference? The answer might be that Newport News relies more on presenting goods within the context of fashion themes and trends, rather than merely classifying them by product categories. This approach might appeal to impulse buyers.

Whether Bryan Eisenberg's analysis is correct or not, the story is a reminder of an important aspect of usability testing: how you test will inevitable influence your results. If UIE had tested people who didn't know in advance what to buy, they may have seen different results.


  • Does Usability Actually Sell Anything? Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - December 10, 2007 - via Usability In The News

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Usability testing (71) 



100 tips and tools to optimize landing pages has published a list of no less than 100 articles and tools that can help you optimize your landing pages to get visitors to do what you want them to.


  • The Landing Page Design Toolbox: 100 Tools, Tips and Resources Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - December 06, 2007

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Landing pages (5) 



Create long-term loyalty through experiences that wow

Long-term customer loyalty is achieved by impressing customers again and again. It can't be bought or bottled. It's created though constant moments of "wow," where the product or service pleasantly surprises a customer.

In this essay, Brandon Schauer shows us how the art of the Long Wow is done by immersing ourselves in the customer's world, simulating the experiences though prototyping, and coming up with delights that normally go unfulfilled.


  • The Long Wow Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - October 29, 2007

Permanent link Comments (0)



Tell people to click if you want them to click

Is it archaic to tell people to "click here" in online copy? Brian Clark thinks not.

"'s been proven time and time again that if you want someone to do something, you'll get better results if you tell them exactly what to do."

A recent experiment by Marketing Sherpa supports his view. They found that the word "click" had a significant influence on the clickthrough rates.

Here are the clickthrough rates of the wordings tested:
- "Click to continue": 8.53%
- "Continue to article": 3.3%
- "Read more": 1.8%


  • Does Telling Someone to Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - October 21, 2007

Permanent link Comments (5)

See also: Links (19) 



How to optimize landing page performance

Marketing Experiments Journal has made a number of A/B tests of landing pages (the pages people land on clicking ads or search result links).

They found that landing page performance can be improved by:
- Focusing on one objective for each page and driving everything on the page to that one objective
- Using a vertical flow through the centre of the page
- Eliminating elements that may distract eye path from the flow toward the objective
- Using visual elements to draw attention toward the call to action
- Avoiding use of off-page links


  • Landing Page Confusion-How Does Having More Than One Objective to a Page Affect its Performance? Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - October 08, 2007 - via Copyblogger

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Research (130)  E-commerce (28)  Landing pages (5)  Web page design (41) 



B2B sites suck

Business-to-business websites have substantially lower usability than mainstream consumer sites. In a usability test, the B2B sites earned a mere 50% success rate. In contrast, mainstream websites have a success rate of 66%.

According to Jakob Nielsen, the major problems with B2B sites are:
- The fail in supporting customers' decision-making process by preventing them from getting the information they need to research solutions
- They use segmentation that don't match the way customers think of themselves
- They require customers to register to get information, which they are very reluctant to do
- They lack pricing information (the users in the study prioritized prices as the most critical type of information)

Most of the test participants said that when they were thinking of doing business with a company, one of their first actions was to check out its website. By being user-hostile, the B2B sites turn away customers without ever knowing how many sales they've lost.


  • B2B Usability Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - May 30, 2006

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Research (130)  E-commerce (28) 

<< Back | More posts >>

Browse GUUUI postings

Methods and the design process

Prototyping and wireframing (120)  Usability testing (71)  Cost-justification and ROI (28)  User research (24)  Personas (19)  The design process (24)  Eye-tracking (14)  Card sorting (13)  Web traffic analysis (12)  Expert reviews (11)  Implementing user-centred design (9)  Site and flow diagramming (6)  Envisionments (4)  Use Cases (3) 

Design elements

Navigation (63)  Web page design (41)  Search (27)  Text (24)  Forms (30)  Links (19)  Guidelines and Standards (15)  Site design (14)  Ads (9)  Design patterns (8)  Sections (8)  Shopping Carts (9)  Error handling (7)  Home pages (9)  Help (3)  E-mails (3)  Sitemaps (2)  Personalization (1)  Print-friendly (1)  Landing pages (5) 

General aspects

E-commerce (28)  Persuasive design (23)  Visual design (20)  Information architecture (15)  Accessibility (13)  Search engines (7)  Credibility, Trust and Privacy (6)  Emotional design (10)  Simplicity vs. capability (7)  Web applications (6)  Intranets (3) 


Flash (6)  Download time (5)  Javascript (3)  URLs (3)  Browsers (3)  Web standards (2) 


Bad designs (20)  Cartoons (14)  Fun music and videos (13)  Funny tools and games (12)  Misc humor (8)  Fun with Jakob Nielsen (9)  Designs with humor (3)  Fun posters (5)  Funny 404 pages (2) 

Resource types

Research (130)  Tips and guidelines (95)  Tools (106)  Books (47)  Audio and video (48)  Interviews (30)  Cases and Examples (28)  Talks and presentations (18)  GUUUI articles (11)  Primers (14)  Online books (5)  Posters (5)  Glossaries (3)  People and organisations (3) 

Information sources

Blogs (12)  Websites (11)  Discussion lists (4)  News (3)  Newsletters (3)  Online magazines (3)  Wikis (1) 

  To the front pageSign inTo the frontpageSearch in GUUUI postingsAbout GUUUI