How Web Design Affects Consumer Behavior

How Web Design Affects Consumer Behavior?


Not everyone has yet realized that customer experience and behavior is the deciding factor for a good digital product. The best way for businesses to meet these rapidly changing consumer needs is to know the effects of website design on behavioral intention and the human psychology behind it. 

Humans Are Social Creatures

 It should not be underestimated how important it is for humans to stay social. We use everything in our environment for social interaction in one form or another. All interactions that take place online are also social interactions. When we visit a website or use an app, we expect it to respond. 

If a website doesn’t respond or takes too long to load, it`s the same as if a real person ignoring us. 

If a website asks us for personal information on the home page, it’s as if a stranger is getting too personal. 

When a website doesn’t remember the information we have just entered, it’s like someone is too ignorant. 

As you can see, almost all online interactions can be explained by social behavior in real life. 

Keep this fact in mind when designing your website and its user experience

We Make Most Decisions Unconsciously

 We often think that people act rationally and make decisions (which website to visit or which product to buy) based on a logical train of thought. 

Recent research shows that, in most cases, this is not the case. Most of the time we don’t even realize when and why we make a decision. It is our unconsciousness that determines whether we should click on a certain page. 

So, if we want a visitor to go to a certain page, we need to target the so-called brain stem, where the emotional component resides. 

Here are some tips on what to keep in mind when it comes to your website design:

  • Any picture of food, attractive people, or scary situations will inevitably get our attention. The same goes for motion (animations).
  • If you want to hold your attention for more than a few seconds, you need to keep your brain stem. You can do this with compelling stories or images of people and their faces. 
  • People absorb information best when it’s wrapped around a story. So use stories as often as you can, even if they are only a small contribution. 
  • Pictures of other people are often noticed. Especially if those people have similar age, style of dress, or other similar characteristics of a customer. 
  • Pictures that show people looking directly into the camera look best. 

People Decide Whether to Trust Your Site in a Blink of an Eye

The moment a customer is on your website, he/she has already made an unconscious decision about what they think of the website, whether they like it, whether they will stay or go to another site, or whether they trust the information offered or not. 

Website trust and credibility depends heavily on the look of the user interface. Here are few things that can reduce the trustworthiness of a website: 

  • Text not aligned or out of order. Centered text and lack of blank spaces. 
  • Too many different fonts and sizes are used; the text is displayed in different colors. 
  • Too much information on one page at once. 
  • The site has too much animation. The movements attract attention, but you have to use such elements carefully.
  • Too many areas of different colors that don`t meet your homogeneous color scheme.

If you want to develop credible and trustworthy web design, avoid these points and stick to common tips to develop a good website.

Motivation Could Be a Key for Customer Retention

People need a sense of achievement to stay motivated. They need to feel that everything is in their hands. 

 You have to make progress visible! In marketing, this is called the goal-gradient hypothesis. Users stay on your website more regularly and rate more products if they have a goal/reward. 

This behavior was first studied by Hull in 1934 on rats. Rats were trained to run through a maze in search of food; the closer they got to the end of the maze the faster they ran. 

Thus, we can say that the closer we get to the goal, the more active we become. 

This pattern of behavior can tell us the following: 

  • The shorter the distance to the goal, the more motivated people will be to achieve it. 
  • Increased motivation can only be initiated if progress is made. 
  • Once a goal is achieved, there is a breakdown in motivation. The greatest risk of losing a customer is after they have received their “reward.” 

Completing a task makes us happy in a certain way. This is one of the reasons why computer games are so popular. People are obsessed with finally mastering a level. You want to make progress, you want to be rewarded, you want to achieve something. 

Well, a website is not a game, but many marketers and designers try to find ways to implement the concepts of motivation. 

Make a progress (through the ordering process, for example) visible, give your users the ability to set goals, challenge them, and reward them. If you keep your users engaged and motivated, they’ll love your site, too. 

Sites like Linkedin, Uber, Duolingo, Starbucks use this technique well to attract and retain users.

Web Design Software to Analyze Performance

Mistakes are inevitable when it comes to web design. That is why marketers use web analytics software to record and evaluate the behavior of anonymous visitors. They can track how customers interact with certain elements of your site.

The results can then be used to improve the website after a statistically significant number of visits. In this way, your web design can be regularly adapted to user behavior and continuously optimized. Possible approaches to optimization are colors, pictures, animations, navigation sequences, typographic, and more.

Special attention should be paid to the most popular landing pages, the most frequent exit pages, and visitor loyalty. Interesting details about user preferences can often serve as a guide for changes. In addition, pay close attention to the most frequent exit pages, as improvements to these pages should convince the majority of website visitors to stay.

Final Thoughts

Understanding behavioral patterns is essential to creating a stellar user interface for a website. If you take these principles into account, it will have a positive impact on your site. Your website or web application will be accepted by a wider mass, people will stay longer, and your bounce rate will decrease.

With a simple basic knowledge of how humans, the brain, and the psyche work, you can develop measures that will promote trust and comfort for the customer.

Author’s BIO: Louis Sawyer is a professional writer, editor and a web design expert. She loves writing about technology trends, web development, mobile games and business issues. Also, Louis works as a proofreader at Computools.  Follow Louis on Twitter.