How to Design Website from an Emotional Prospective

I am not a Psychologist. Neither an avid reader on psychological anatomy but that one thing I am pretty sure about myself is that I am a 156Lbs pack of blood and bones programmed with a particular set of emotions that define me. These emotions drive me, they reveal who I am, and they influence almost every decision of my life that I make.

And same goes for all us. Being an owner of an internet marketing agency and running it for years, I have clearly observed how emotions affect the buying decisions and the reason is pretty obvious.

We humans always try to persuade ourselves that we are highly sensible rational creatures, who make choices purely based on logic and priorities. However; in reality, we are highly emotional beings. The more we try to prove our rationality, the greater influence our emotions have on our decisions.

The Role of Emotions in E-Commerce

Emotions play a significant role on web as well. Lately I observed a lot of e-stores breaking the internet market with tons of investment and a good UX design but just after months they vanish somewhere as they fail to create that impact on visitors mind. So what are they missing? I dug in a little deeper to find out the factors behind the non-fulfillment of user expectation. One of the most common factors that I discovered in my research was that emotions are often overlooked by web designers; they tend focus on visual tricks driven by an infatuation with technology.

The problem with me is that when I learn something new I just can’t help sharing it with others. I put a lot of effort on my research and here are some findings that I would like to share with designers and marketers to keep in their game plan when they kickoff with a new site. Or even, you can change your current design right on time before you start losing your visitors.

CREATING EMOTIONS

I consider this the job and responsibility of marketers to help designers create emotions for users of your websites. The key is to think about perception, not composition. If you can ask yourself a few vital questions about how your users are feeling, then you can go a long way to pleasing them.

1. Begin with a Concept

Before you start looking for potential customers, identify your target audience and figure out what appeals them and what message you intend to send. The foremost requirement is you need a concept for your website design. Who wants to come across a jungle without a map; while you might get to your destination, getting there is going to be a lot harder than provided with a plan in the first place.

In designing a website concept, you must consider a number of factors, such as:

  • The concept and theme and what message does it carry.
  • Your business image and cooperate agenda.
  • How the design features can help the message reach your potential customers faster.
  • What design features could backfire and hurt the message.
2. Getting the Message Across

In order to land maximum visitors on your store; everything on your website should have a certain purpose. Pointless design choices are annoying for visitors. If some feature doesn’t depict a strong and obvious meaning, the users are likely to become annoyed because they can’t figure out what it means and probably they will assign a personal meaning to it. Visitors easily attach to emotional significance to any design choices you make. Simplify their lives and yours by attaching a clear meaning from the beginning.

Consider FreeAgent for a moment, a fantastic piece of accounting software in the UK, they know that typically people who visit their website are angry, frustrated, and fed up with trying to do their accounts. Their website is targeted almost solely at cheering you up and telling you not to worry, there’s an easier way to do things.

Consistency should follow across all media. It is a major part of sending a clear message. With web design, consistency means more than making certain that text doesn’t contradict itself. This also includes the consistent use of logo on websites, in e-mail messages, and on social media accounts; then it will always be associated with your company. It means that all elements of a page work together unanimously and match your corporate image. Eventually, a consistently used logo can elicit meaning all by itself. Try to keep the meaning and emotion in your design clear to avoid confusion.

3. Involvement

Involvement has been the object of considerable consumer-oriented research. Communication gap between the customer and design creates a lagging factor. Online, involvement implies a user emotional response that includes absorption and excitement with website characteristics and therefore encompasses elements of “flow”. If you want visitors to spend time on your site, you need to make it easy and interesting for them to get around.

You might be tempted to do something unique with your navigation or menus design, but again, the simpler, the better. Making your menus standard in appearance is a way to make your readers feel comfortable and a lead to a better communication when they land on your site.

4. Trust

Website usability can significantly impact trust. Online trust relates to consumer confidence in a website and willingness to rely on the vendor in conditions where the consumer may be vulnerable to the seller Trust has an emotional component, and is defined as the extent to which one feels secure and comfortable about relying on the trustee. An absence of trust is one of the most frequently cited reasons that consumers refrain from purchasing from Internet vendors.

A relationship exists between beauty of a website and trust. If you are selling items online using an ecommerce website then I always recommend including a graphic indicating the level of SSL security that protects each and every transaction on your website. It is also well established that website visitors tend to feel more comfortable about taking actions that other people have taken before them. For this reason many websites feature client testimonials, product ratings and reviews and other mechanisms for demonstrating that the website is promoting products or services that are highly thought of in the wider community.

5. TONE OF YOUR CONTENT

The tone of content on your website is an important emotional factor. How you communicate with users says a lot about your relationship with them. While you communicate certain messages through words, your tone of words reveals what you think of them and also what you want them to think of you.

Your tone of content strongly determines your first impression. If you wrap a serious message in a humorous story, users might not take you seriously. On the other hand, if you try to sell something fun and your tone of voice is too serious, users might not take you seriously either.

For your own website, know what you are selling, who is buying it and the context in which you are delivering the message.

6. Satisfaction

Satisfaction on the web relates to “stickiness” and the sum of all the website qualities that induce visitors to remain at the website rather than move to another site. An effectively designed website engages and attracts online consumers, resulting in online satisfaction.

Following are the factors that enhance the visitor satisfaction.

  • A big step you can take toward improving your online customer service presence is to respond quicker to visitors’ inquiries. By and large, customers say the most important thing retailers can do is respect their time.
  • One of the best ways to improve your customer service efficiencies is to offer a live chat service. Loud house’s survey results indicated 93 percent of customers agreed that real-time support is helpful when making online purchases.
  • Another way to boost customer satisfaction is to reward your customers with loyalty program incentives. Loyalty programs reward customers with discounts and bonuses when making select purchases.
  • To ensure your customer service efforts are effective, it’s important to collect data on your website’s performance. Use analytics tools to track how many visitors arrive on your support pages and which options they select.
7. Enjoyment

Enjoyment is something totally subjective in nature. Facebook and twitter are the best example. Both are networking sites yet, some people consider facebook more appealing and addictive than twitter. However, some find twitter or quora more interesting and appealing. And there is whole lot of people who like both.

This again depends on the target audience and the lot of internet user who is on your target list. Humor is an effective way to connect with people. A good laugh or even a little smile can break the ice and make people feel comfortable. However, humor is also a delicate matter because it is extremely difficult to generalize. What’s hilarious for one person might be ridiculous, embarrassing or even insulting to someone else.

Yet again I suggest making an analysis of your target audience and then go for enjoying UX design. Keep things simple and interesting at the same time. If your target market is teenagers, then your design must have something interesting for them like articles on music or mp3 players etc. A web is beautified if it contains high quality images. Don’t hesitate to spend a bit of money on sophisticated graphic design, finest photography, and copywriting services. It is a good investment because it will make your web stand out from the line. Try to have freelancers onboard. Their rates are relatively less and deliver high quality services at low cost.

Conclusion

Emotional design has many qualities. However; it is clear that if websites are effective and are able to arouse responses in users such as enjoyment, involvement, trust, or satisfaction, then they will be successful in enticing users to return to the site. However, beyond pure research, these results have merit for practitioners such as web strategists and designers. As a powerful communication mechanism for commercial or other use, effective website design has the ability to persuade.

Just because something functions correctly, doesn’t mean it’s perfect. You need to get of this mindset and think a little further. Emotions give us positive experiences, making us happier and giving us better recall. Whether you use your understanding for noble purposes or not are entirely up to you, but take the next step and start designing emotions and experiences, not just aesthetics.

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