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Designing for Behavior Change

By Miranda Schenkel for UNITiD

Introduction

Design is all about behavior. We can help people make better decisions by designing (digital) products and services that stimulate positive and healthy behaviour. This will only succeed with a design that is fun and easy to use. To achieve this we use a user-centered approach. Interaction designers play an important part in this. When designing for behaviour change we combine our knowledge of design with our knowledge of psychology and substantiate this with field research. We aim to explore what people think and do, but also why they do what they do.

Miranda Schenkel — Interaction Designer @UNITiD / Dog Photographer

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “In order to design the best products and services, you need to know your users. Behaviour is everything that our job is about. Our strength as interaction designers, is that we can tackle complex problems and use design to solve them. This works best in multidisciplinary agile teams with people from the field involved. They can provide you with a lot of information and ideas that you can use in your research. Start prototyping and testing at a very early stage to find out quickly what works and what doesn’t.

1 Changing Behaviour – The Power of Design – UNITiD

A lot of first world problems we encounter today, like obesity, are due to behavioural factors that people are not aware of. People often think that raising awareness is enough to change unwanted or unhealthy behaviour. But in a world where information is everywhere all the time, awareness is not enough. We explored this field for a while now and

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Designing happiness is a balance of small pleasures and a higher purpose. This chapter looks at 3 ways to create happy moments with design.

2 3 Ways to Design Happiness

Over the last couple of years, I've conducted research with my colleagues at Change Sciences-an online study with 8,000 people on 250 top sites, online diaries sampling positive tech moments from 1350 people, and memory experiments with 535 people representing a range of ages and socio-economic backgrounds-to determine whether it's possible to create happiness by design. In short: yes, it

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Whatever you’re designing, it probably involves feedback. Designing that feedback to be as effective as possible can mean the difference between a successful and failed product. This article discusses how to influence behavior by designing well-crafted feedback loops.

3 Designing Great Feedback Loops

The products we build are full of feedback loops, whether we know it or not. People who study human behavior agree that feedback loops play a critical role in what we do. From biofeedback to the quantified self, designers and psychologists alike are discovering the real power that these cyclical interactions play in shaping our day-to-day choices. Designing for behavior

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Successful messaging services are particularly good at deploying the four steps Nir Eyal calls, “the Hook,” to keep users coming back. The Hook is composed of a trigger, action, variable reward, and investment. By understanding these four basic steps, businesses can build better products and services, and consumers can understand the hidden psychology behind our daily technology habits.

5 The Psychology Behind Why We Can't Stop Messaging

Today, there's an app for just about everything. With all the amazing things our smartphones can do, there is one thing that hasn't changed since the phone was first developed. No matter how advanced phones become, they are still communication devices - they connect people together. Though I can't remember the last time I actually talked to another person live

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “A great place to start in designing a behaviour change intervention is to identify the Actor, Action and Outcome. This is an idea articulated in Steve Wendel’s brilliant book Designing for Behaviour Change. Other designers sometimes use different terms, or have similar but different starting points for designing, but I have found this approach very useful.

6 Designing for behaviour change: Tip 1 - IDENTIFY THE ACTOR, ACTION, OUTCOME

Tori Flower is Creative Director of Shift (formerly We Are What We Do), a behaviour change organisation that designs products for social change. She also set the RSA Student Design Awards 'Everyday Well-being' brief in 2013-14 and 'The Daily Diet' brief this year. In a series of seven short blogs aimed at student designers released each day this week, she

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Generate a really clear understanding of the Actor’s barriers to undertake Action, and what might motivate them to undertake it. To do this you have to undertake research with real people who are representative of the Actor you defined.

7 Designing for behaviour change: Tip 2 - IDENTIFY BARRIERS AND MOTIVATIONS

Tori Flower is Creative Director of Shift (formerly We Are What We Do), a behaviour change organisation that designs products for social change. She also set the RSA Student Design Awards 'Everyday Well-being' brief in 2013-14 and 'The Daily Diet' brief this year. In a series of seven short blogs aimed at student designers released each day this week, she

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Cognitive biases play a significant role in the way we make decisions so it’s not surprising that people are now examining these biases to see how to exploit them in the design of web sites. I’m going to use the term ‘persuasion architects’ to describe designers who knowingly use these techniques to influence the behaviour of users.

9 Persuasion Triggers In Web Design

How do you make decisions? If you're like most people, you'll probably answer that you pride yourself on weighing the pros and cons of a situation carefully and then make a decision based on logic. You know that other people have weak personalities and are easily swayed by their emotions, but this rarely happens to you. Cognitive biases like these

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Unfortunately, too many companies build their products betting users will do what they should or have to do, instead of what they want to do. They fail to change behaviors because they neglect to make their services enjoyable for its own sake, often asking users to learn new, unfamiliar actions instead of making old routines easier.

10 Why Behavior Change Apps Don’t Work

Why Behavior Change Apps Don't WorkImagine walking into a busy mall when someone approaches you with an open hand. "Would you have some coins to take the bus, please?" he asks. But in this case, the person is not a panhandler. The beggar is a PhD. As part of a French study, researchers wanted to know if they could change

11 14 Behavioral Patterns for User Interface Design

One of the greatest books for User Interface designers is called, not a surprise, Designing Interfaces and it was written by Jenifer Tidwell. In the first chapter, Jenifer describes 14 behavioral patterns to improve your design. Follow and respect those patterns and your application will have more chance to find appreciation from your users - it will be useful! 1.

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “As UX designers, we try to ensure users will have positive experiences when using our products or accessing our services. This often translates into empowering users, thus giving them the tools to find their internal locus of control. In other words, we manipulate them into thinking they have been empowered.

12 The Perception of Control

Every day, at the street by my house, I press the "walk" button, and I wait. Each time, as soon as the traffic cycle is complete, I get the walk signal. On a whim, one day I didn't press the button... but at the end of the traffic cycle, I got the walk signal. The button I press every day

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Working harder for something means we appreciate it more. Ever hear the phrase, “Why buy the cow when you get the milk for free?” This is the internet business version of that. By working harder to see the stuff you’re interested in you actually end up liking the site more and taking it more seriously.

13 When Pain is a Good Thing

There are times when you want to put your user in pain. Yes, pain. Most user experience people talk about the importance of making things simple. Even I talk about how we ' re all trained monkeys and we don ' t want to be making decisions. Don ' t make me think. Don ' t put me in any

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Users who receive no feedback post less frequently, a potentially effective strategy could be to ignore undesired behaviour and provide no feedback at all.

14 Data Mining Reveals How The “Down-Vote” Leads To A Vicious Circle Of Negative Feedback

In the 1930s, the American psychologist Burrhus Skinner popularised the notion of operant conditioning, the notion that an individual's future behaviour is determined by the punishments and rewards he or she has received in the past. It means that specific patterns of behaviour can be induced by punishing unwanted actions while rewarding those that are desired. And it certainly works

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “The following are the top 10 mistakes in behaviour change as researched by Professor B.J. Fogg. These are mistakes that, when avoided, can help you accelerate the formation of new habits and more importantly, make them stick.

15 The Top 10 Mistakes in Behaviour Change (and How to Avoid Them)

The Top 10 Mistakes in Behaviour Change (and How to Avoid Them)Learning new behaviours is undoubtedly hard. You have obstacles to overcome, resistance to contend with and an environment to redesign. But behaviour change is a lot harder when you make mistakes: ones that are common, but often overlooked or disregarded because of their simplicity. The problem is, we have

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “You have to make your way in the world by providing something of value, but plenty of value goes completely unnoticed unless it’s properly packaged. The packaging is where the mad science of emotional design plays a part. When science and art combine, you create a holistic approach to capture user attention and bring about that ultimate goal: design that changes how people feel.

16 Why emotions are key to impactful websites

Humans like to fancy themselves logical beings, but anybody with some sense will tell you that most people are ruled by their emotions. Emotion drives sales, engenders trust, establishes arguments, makes points, captures attention and builds the bridge between disparate factions with vastly different goals. In essence, any objective you'd like to reach through design will require an emotional investment

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Design has always facilitated change in behaviour, especially in the area of technology, but it seems lately that design for behaviour change is in the forefront of people’s awareness. Part of the challenge is understanding what actually influences someone to change their behaviour in the first place.

17 The A-B-C of Behaviour

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Building persuasive user experiences is like a relationship and you need to treat it like one. So, what do you want? A one-night stand or a lasting partnership?

18 Beyond Usability: Designing With Persuasive Patterns

You probably have a great product. You've done your usability deeds and you have a few core customers who regularly use your product. However, it just doesn't stick out from the competition. It has a high bounce rate, only few users return, users abandon your product faster than you would like and, in general, users never get far enough to

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “We’ve all heard the old adage that “A photo is worth a thousand words”. But did you know there’s real science behind the statement?

19 The psychology of visual UX

Storytelling in Web design guides the user experience, incorporating all types of media to craft a logical and emotional narrative out of thin air. Since the beginning of human history, stories have played an important part in how we connect with one another. Just because we now tell our stories on the screen rather than around a campfire does not

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Designs with a human touch just feel right. It might be intangible, but it’s undeniably powerful. Think of interactions between people. Most communication happens using common languages, such as speech or even posture or gestures. It’s usable communication.

20 5 psychology secrets for great interaction design

It's becoming more important every day for your designs to connect more with users and include a "human element." Website and user experience design needs to feel real, from aesthetics to interactions to motion (perceived and real) to emotional connection. Here are a few ways to do it. The first step is saying it out loud: "Humans come first." Now

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “In this post psychological experiments and academic research id cut into simple, actionable steps that can help you design better experiences.

21 6 Psychological Triggers That Make UX Design Persuasive

You must learn about human psychology to design compelling user experiences. If you understand how the human mind works, it's easier to get people's attention and keep it. It's also easier to get them to take some form of action (like subscribing or buying). But how do you find out what goes on inside the mind of your users? Well

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “In this part of the series we can see how words and numbers can be used to prime us in numerous ways. From increasing speed of recognition, to impacting on perception or judgement or subsequent behaviour, to affecting our very goals and motivations. We have also presented a model to think about priming in relation to brands where we have differentiated between direct and in direct brand priming.

22 Priming with words

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “We build products meant to persuade people to do what we want them to do. We call these people “users” and even if we don’t say it aloud, we secretly wish every one of them would become fiendishly addicted.

23 Online Manipulation: All The Ways You're Currently Being Deceived

There's a fine line between online persuasion and manipulation. Here are a few examples that cross over to the dark side.

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “As designers, we need to consider the range of experiences people go through when using our products — understanding what nudges them to begin caring, take action, and stay motivated and engaged over time.

24 A behavioral approach to product design

Four steps to designing products with impact

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Empathy means getting the full picture, not just collecting answers from a survey. This can get UX designers closer to what customers actually want and lead their design in the right direction. Their story doesn’t have to end the same way Avon’s did. A little empathy can go a long way.

25 The Keys to Designing an Empathetic User Experience

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Psychology can be used intelligently to help achieve the goals of a website. Try implementing these guidelines to increase your user engagement and build an online experience for them. Let me know in the comments of strategies you employ that use psychology for goal-driven results.

26 7 Psychology Secrets for Impactful Web Design

Buy and sell handcrafted, mousemade design content like vector patterns, icons, photoshop brushes, fonts and more at Creative Market.

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “On the surface, no single factor seems to set Slack apart from a plethora of other online collaboration tools. However, a closer look using the model described in the book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Product, reveals the user psychology behind the company’s success.

27 What Makes Slack a Habit Forming Enterprise App?

Slack isn't just another office collaboration app. The company has been called, "the fastest-growing workplace software ever." Recent press reports claim that "users send more than 25 million messages each week," and that the company is, "adding $1 million to its annual billing projections every six weeks." Smelling an opportunity, investors just plowed $120 million into the company, giving it

Added by Miranda Schenkel: “Good design is about creating pathways to resolve these conflicts— it’s bridging the gap between what people want to do, what they actually do, and what works for society at scale.

29 Design Dilemmas (from the year 2025)

Design Dilemmas (from the year 2025)What is design really for? Should it follow human behaviour, or lead it?The story of how IDEO designed the IKEA concept kitchen to satisfy conflicting desires. Last year, while designing a kitchen concept for 2025 for IKEA, our team of designers at IDEO had to ask ourselves: did we want to design a kitchen that

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