Web designers are always looking to get the edge on each other and find new ideas that can help them create better websites and lead the next big thing in web design. When it comes to the user experience, all the big changes in the past few years have been backed by psychology, if not inspired by psychological terms. The following key elements of web design are all significantly psychological.
If you were around in the 1990s, you might remember what early sites looked like. Pages upon pages of words were highly common as slow loading times meant that other content like photos and videos were almost pointless to feature on blogs. This information overload was terrible for web design, and you will almost never see anything like that now.
Content is carefully designed to be digestible and simplicity is the name of the game. This is related to the concept of information overload. The human mind can only process a limited amount of information in any one moment and supplying more information than that can cause somebody to feel overwhelmed and panicked by a site, leading to high bounce-off rates.
Reviews are extremely important. When was the last time you made a purchase without checking what other people thought about it? They’re so crucial in eCommerce web design due to the psychological concept of social proof. Humans actually switch off the bit of their brain that analyzes and makes decisions if they get information from other humans who have done the thinking for them.
The social proof that reviews allows means that people are far more likely to make a purchase if the product has been reviewed well. That’s why review reputational management companies like Review Mojo are as popular as internet marketing companies. They help to provide that social proof needed for a sale.
The psychology of color has been an important element of marketing and branding for as long as branding has existed. Your choice of color should complement your brand ethos, which should complement the personality of your customers. If your customers are looking for a company that is exciting, bright colors like red will be a good choice, for example. Colors have more short-term impacts, too. Take the case of an online slot machine company that changed their call-to-action button from green to yellow, yielding 187.4% more conversions.
You can use things that are different to make certain elements of your site stand out and either be clicked upon more or be remembered more — something called the Von Restorff Effect. First identified in 1933, the Von Restorff Effect implies that meaningful contrast between products or site elements (color, shape, position, you name it) can help you to achieve various goals. It’s important to think strategically about how to apply it as it has to be used sparingly. Too much difference will make a site look confused, jumbled, and untrustworthy; good web designers know that the Von Restorff Effect must be used sparingly.