User experience (UX) is so hot right now, and rightfully so. Users are our customers, advocates, and in some cases, our biggest critics. Everyone’s a critic. Don’t they deserve a great UX design?
They’re the lifeblood of any organization: they have disposable income, (hopefully).
As much progress as we’ve made in the UX world, creating a beautiful experience that’s also simple and functional is an enterprising endeavor. Frankly, it’s rare.
But oversights and errors in users’ experiences are much more popular. #trending
That’s because missteps are easier. They happen organically, without much effort. They creep in, in the night, when no one’s looking, or more offensively, in broad daylight on your home page.
Here’s a compilation of the five biggest UX errors that I frequently see, along with great examples of how to overcome them.
1. App pressuring
“This will work better on our app: Download Now!” Just so we’re on the same page, I don’t want to download your app, and you can’t make me.
Downloading apps is so 2008. That’s nearly a decade ago, which is an eternity in tech years. Google’s Android has moved to ‘Instant Apps’, giving users access without having to download anything.
Desperation isn’t a good look on you. Instead, work mobility into your value to make sure users 1) have a reason to download it, and 2) will continue to use it after they do.
A great example is Pocket. They’ve worked hard to seamlessly go everywhere with their users.
2. Text overload…
…There’s a big paragraph of unnecessary language that no one’s really reading because there’s just too much content on the internet, and 98% of people just want to know what the hell to do without reading anything. Continue below.
Guiding copy can be a bandaid, but web pages are like jokes, if you have to explain one, then it’s not working.
Invision is the leading collaboration tool in the design space, and their website shows us that they back it up. It’s a simple design with just enough words to let you know where everything is.
3. Forms with poor form.
Firstly, if someone has to give you a lot of information, don’t stack all the fields on top of one another. That’s UX 101, and it makes the user feel like Rocky running up stairs.
Humans need to make easy progress.
Beyond the appearance, the flow of forms is hugely important. Forms that automatically carry you along are wonderful.
If I must navigate myself, I prefer to get through forms with my friend ‘tab’ on my keyboard. If your form isn’t friends with her, we’re going to have issues.
I don’t know the people at Typeform, but they’re wonderful. Their home page tells you they have a simple approach to life, and they bring that same approach to forms.
4. Unfriendly, inhuman logic
Machines are logical. Humans are emotional creatures.
Your website should work with your human users, not against them.
If your page has an open type box for a phone number, it’s your responsibility to accept my phone number in any format I choose to use. *Error* Please enter your phone number in the “XXX-XXX-XXXX” format.
Don’t call me. I prefer dots. It’ll never work out.
Why yes Southwest, I would like to view my options in a simple table and quickly toggle between other dates depending on whatever my emotional motivations are, thank you.
5. Page fatigue
This happens in a couple different ways.
Unless you’re Reddit, your website should not have any rabbit holes that I might fall into. If you have multiple pages with the same content, telling me the same things, I’m going to care less and less.
If I’m trying to accomplish something, like give you money, then there shouldn’t be any obstacles between me and my goal. Like the board game, websites should have shoots and ladders, and the shoots should lead to the goal.
(The “ladders” in this analogy are content pages for educating users, if you were wondering.)
Amazon has mastered this. You can purchase anything from a good book of jokes to a chandelier with only three clicks. Or one click, if you sign up for “1-click ordering”.
The internet is begging companies to stop making these mistakes.
The pictured examples are all successful, generally well-respected companies, and it’s no coincidence that they have great user experiences.
If you want to become a UX Designer/Researcher to rid the world of bad experiences, then you can learn more about our part-time UX program. It’s a personal learning experience taught by industry veterans in Boulder, CO. Request information for July’s cohort.
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