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The psychology behind a good UX design

Posted In Mobile App Development - By Techtiplib on Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014 With No Comments »

User experience is essential when designing functional products and services; in fact, it impacts on almost every item or service provided, from comfortable and practical furniture to efficient automobiles or any fit for purpose system. The same is true of technology – how you interact with a specific system is key to a positive experience.

Currently, there are over one million applications available for iOS and Android-powered devices, many of which are designed by average app users with a unique and original idea. Alas, many of these apps range from the ridiculous to the downright useless.

Image Courtesy of ShutterStock.com

Understanding the psychology 

To achieve intuitive user experiences when designing a new mobile App you need to think about several aspects of the design problem. These include the principal focus of the App, its aesthetics, how complex it will be to operate and its affordance. Just by giving a little more consideration to these individual components you will find you are able to clarify your mobile App design priorities and create the optimum App.

Focus

By taking the time to assess what your App users want to gain access to, and how they want to get it, you’ll find you’re already on the right track to designing and creating a mobile App that will respond to what drives your potential audience. This means making sure the tabs and links will move them through the App logically and seamlessly. If you make this possible, you will increase the amount of trust that users have in your design strategy.

Aesthetics

You could say that there are two types of aesthetics: style and economy. The first type refers to the beauty and clarity of the interface that App users find attractive. The second type is based on the economy of process or solution – aiming for a succinct explanation for and demystification of a complex idea. If you want to build trust with your consumer, which will lead potential purchasers to spend money on your products as well as refer the App to friends and family, then you’ve got to make sure the App is people-friendly on all levels.

Complexity

Psychology tells us that often it’s easier for people to categorize or compartmentalize tasks, issues and functions. In App design terms this means making sure that users will find distinguishing between functions straightforward, so you should aim to make the visuals unique and distinct. Consistent visual structure and language are therefore vitally important, in addition to incorporating a certain level of visual complexity, which will retain interest and demand the user’s attention.

Affordance

Donald Norman, author of The Psychology of Everyday Things (later retitled The Design of Everyday Things, which he thought better reflected the content) first introduced the concept of affordance. Basically, it refers to the capacity for designing features that “speak to the user” without the need for instruction, such as a flat plate on a door that indicates “push me” and a door handle that indicates “pull me”. In App terms, this can be represented by the thumbs up and thumbs down symbols, for example, often used to indicate user preferences and choices.

Making use of all these components is particularly important when designing new Apps to keep the end user in mind and avoid creating something that appeals to you but is not necessarily suitable for your target audience.

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