Nine User-Experience Tips to Rule Them All
1. Copy is design, too.
The way that you describe and label the product is just as important as the visual design + feature set. It’s particularly important in getting users to sign up. People want to know exactly what you will do for them, and how you will do it, within seconds of landing on your website or app page.
2. Garish usually wins.
Forget minimalist, simple design. For some products it works, for most it doesn’t. The most important thing in a product is accessibility - I should be able to quickly do what I want to do, and there should be a clear call to action for each main user desire.
3. Trust is a foundation, not a feature.
Your app is treated like a living, breathing person. Your users build a relationship with it. They converse with it. They confide in it. They lean on it. Make sure that you pass the trust test, or like a flaky friend, you’ll find yourself without many supporters.
4. The basics, when done well, become unique.
Before you get too complicated, make sure that all of the basics are handled. Does the app load quickly? Is it responsive? Does the user get immediate feedback for his/her actions? Is the text large enough? Most apps get way too complicated and ambitious before they nail the basics. Reliability might be the most unique trait in the product world.
5. Games always go out of style.
If you gamify your app, your users will treat it like a game, and all games must end. Don’t nourish your users with points and badges. Instead, provide them with real value in their lives. Give them a solution to a problem that matters.
6. We only invest in our kids, our spouses, and our friends.
Don’t expect your users to put a lot of time, effort, and data, into your system right off the bat. You need to do something useful for them first, even if it seems trivial. Most of the time, you won’t become best friends with your users - so treat them like customers instead. Tit for tat.
7. Don’t be a bookstore and a cafe.
Do one thing really well, instead of two things moderately well. You need to create a tight association between yourself and a user need, so that you easily pop into their heads when the time calls.
8. Pleasant surprises are wonderful.
Is there a way you can give some of your users a truly astounding treat every blue moon? Those kinds of memories can last a lifetime.
9. Even great mothers nag.
To really help someone, you sometimes need to nag them. If you use email and push notifications in a respectful manner to help your users do something worthwhile, you win.