Persuasive design principles the power of pixel

Ratomir Jovanovic
Chief Executive Officer at inordo

Steve Krug, the author of "Don't Make Me Think" argues that a good software program or website should let people accomplish their intended tasks easily and directly.

Decisions are made every day, but not all of them can be simple. The number ranges between 3500-5000 in a typical 24 hour span depending on what you count as decisions (some people don't put much thought into their actions). But sometimes it's hard to know when we're making the right choice; there could always be another option that meets our needs better or is more enjoyable for us personally. Understanding how and why people interact with products helps us think about designing experiences which will improve decision-making anxiety and overall user experience!


Persuasive design is a tool that companies use to get specific results from users. It's used on eCommerce and travel sites because the site owners know how humans think, so they have designed their interfaces accordingly in order for them to maximize efficiency when it comes down to converting potential customers into actual buyers of products or services.

Persuasion also has an effect on web-based experiences across desktop computers and mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets but this time around we're talking about wearable technology like smartwatches and fitness trackers with touchscreens which are becoming more popular every day thanks mainly due to increased awareness regarding health problems associated with sedentary lifestyles.

The use of persuasive design brings up moral and ethical issues when it comes to whether or not deception is ethically justifiable. Understandably, there’s a fine line between deceptive practices like using dark patterns that can trick users into taking an action without realizing what they were doing (i.e., hidden costs disguised as ads).

In Toward an Ethics of Persuasive Technology, authors Daniel Berdichevsky and Erik Neuenschwander suggest keeping this golden rule in mind when it comes to persuasion: “The creators of a persuasive technology should never seek to persuade anyone of something they themselves would not want” (Berdihevksy et al). This means you shouldn't attempt at persuading somebody

Persuasion can be an invaluable tool that skilled designers use for good. Persuasive design makes digital experiences frictionless and easier to use, as well as more appealing. For example, the online banking company Simple uses authoritative figures in their interface to help customers make a generous tip at restaurants by showing 20% is considered standard (social proof) or how much they will receive if they choose this percentage of the bill's total cost ($0).


There are six persuasive design principles commonly used by UX designers to enhance user experiences. These include framing, reciprocity, scarcity, social proof (also called the bandwagon effect), authority and salience- these tools can be leveraged in order to successfully persuade a user's decision on whether or not to buy your product.


People love making comparisons before buying a product or signing up for a service because they want to make decisions that bring them the most value. The persuasive design principle of framing compares different options in an appealing way by presenting it as "just right."


Reciprocity is the principle of returning favors because people feel obligated to repay them. In order not to come across as taking advantage, they like reciprocating with something similar or even better than what was given before in hopes of being viewed favorably by others.


Every day, the less of something there is, the more valuable it becomes. The scarcity principle states that people tend to be more decisive if they know something will not last much longer or quantity are limited.

Social Proof

There is power in numbers. When you see people around you doing the same thing, it can be very reassuring that this action has been approved by others or at least not discouraged.

Social proof relieves anxiety because there are reassurances that those who have taken a certain course of action before haven't regretted their decision and they're not alone with concerns about whether what they’ve done will work out well for them.


When you are looking to make a decision, it is important that you seek out the advice of experts who can provide assistance. When people see suggestions coming from an expert or somebody they trust, then they will be more willing to take on board their recommendations and act accordingly.


The salience principle is the idea that people are more likely to pay attention to what matters most at that moment. The Google search page, with its constantly changing and updating list of links based on your previous searches can be a great example of this persuasive design principle.


In our everyday lives, we are constantly making decisions. While these may seem small and insignificant to most of us, persuasive design principles play a huge role in the majority of those choices that we make regardless if it is intentional or not. The three questions people ask themselves before they decide on something can give designers insight into how to create more effective designs because understanding this will provide them with information about what factors motivate their decision-making process based on which question was answered first (or last).

When presented with an option between two possibilities where one has less time involved but costs more money than another person might be motivated by the other way around so choosing carefully should always take priority when looking at your options!


The time and effort people are willing to spend on a task is the most common question they ask before deciding whether or not to take it. By understanding this behavior, designers can focus their attention on designing interfaces that will speed up interactions for those who want instant gratification by prominently displaying the salient information of each screen so you don't have to click around too much in order find what you're looking for.


Signing up for Travelocity can be a tedious process, especially when you're in the middle of completing purchase or booking travel arrangements. However, they simplify this procedure by including it as part of their initial booking process which not only saves time but also makes things easier on your end to complete one more task that requires little effort from you!

The old adage goes "How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." The Zebra, an insurance comparison site, has taken on the age-old struggle of filling out forms with its new UX design. Instead of presenting one seemingly endless form with tons and tons of questions that make it seem impossible to get started from fear or intimidation (aka chunking), they divide these into smaller sections which are easier for people to start ticking off boxes in order to complete them.

The Zebra's fast & simple process ensures you stay organized. They know time is valuable, which is why they only show one question at a time and fade out the others so it doesn't distract from your current answer.


Successful decision making is influenced by many factors, but one of the most important variables to keep in mind is value. Framing and persuasive design strategies can be highly effective for this purpose.

Good Practice

The Zebra Insurance Company was founded with the goal of helping people access their financial goals. The company does this by selecting and analyzing insurance on behalf of clients, then presenting them in a way that is easy to understand. By using visual indicators such as a frame around less expensive packages or an arrow above more expensive ones, they are able to show how much better investing one’s money could be if purchased at different price ranges rather than choosing just the minimum package offered for everyone.

Netflix understands the power of free. They offer their full service for an entire month, and 96% of those users convert to paying subscribers after that time has passed!

Inviting people to try the product by offering free trials can help them get over their cost resistance and come to appreciate the practical benefits that may motivate them. People are less likely to say no if they don't have anything invested in it, so this is a great strategy for overcoming these hurdles!


When you’re considering a purchase or action, do you ever ask yourself what the benefits are? What will be in it for me when I commit to this decision? There is no denying that people often look at buying decisions from an emotional standpoint - and with good reason. We all want to make sound financial choices before spending our hard-earned money on something we know nothing about.

For those of us who have had run ins with persuasive design principles such as reciprocity (the idea that if someone does some nice thing for us, then we should return the favor) scarcity (if there's only one left so buy now), authority (subscribers usually follow experts' advice because they trust them more than themselves) or social proof.


Travelocity's scarcity principle is a great way to get people moving and booking trips before they sell out.

Travelocity is alerting travellers that prices may be going up soon, so they should book now to take advantage of the current discounted rates..

Social Proof


Travelocity encourages its customers to protect their travel plans with an additional fee. By showing that other people have done the same, it can help reassure and convince them of making a sound decision for themselves as well.


People are conditioned to respect authority. It's no surprise then that companies use credibility as a selling point, and restaurants will be sure to tell you how many famous people (or maybe not so famous) have been there before!

The best way to sell a product is by using authority figures, credible research and endorsements..

Some people may think that the most effective ways of selling products are through catchy slogans or even flashy ads in magazines featuring celebrities endorsing their use. However, it has been proven time after time again that these methods do not work as well on consumers who have grown accustomed to avoiding such tactics for being too intrusive or just trying them out because they're hip at the moment; this leaves us with one option: legitimate claims backed up by facts and data from reputable sources like doctors' associations can be used more effectively than any other technique when appealing directly to your target audience's needs so you know what will truly interest them about whatever line of beauty care offers you want


People like the feeling of accomplishment and feel uneasy when things are left unaccomplished. This natural human tendency creates an opportunity for designers to support people toward fulfilling a personal goal.

Simple banking’s Goals feature motivates customers to keep saving money in order reach their savings target by using visual progress bars on a balance sheet, with one bar representing each individual's current financial status and how much they need saved before reaching their designated goals: short-term or long-term targets that range from $1,000 all the way up into six figures!

Seeing these incomplete bars encourages them to continue adding funds until they fill it out completely – which is why this type of design can be so powerful at motivating prospective savers towards achieving even small.

Duolingo has succeeded in making the value of its product apparent to others. The short term benefits are self-evident, as people can see their progress bars and rewards increase with every lesson completed. However, Duolingo also understands that the long term is what matters most—as learning a new language will inevitably lead to many more opportunities for success not only academically but professionally as well!

Duolingo does an excellent job at demonstrating how valuable it's products are through both immediate gratification--progress bars and feedback after each session--and over time by providing users with one less barrier between them and success: acquiring a new language (though I learned Russian instead!).


Conclusion paragraph: Understanding human behavior is the key to designing meaningful products. By using these principles of persuasion, skilled product designers can improve user experiences in a way that simplifies decision-making. Innovation in technology requires designers to continue to keep up with the latest techniques and methodologies—understanding how people behave gives them the means to build better products for everyday life. Used ethically, persuasive design principles are powerful tool for building meaningful products that help people make better decisions every day. Contact us today if you want more information about our services or would like a free consultation!

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Ratomir Jovanovic
Chief Executive Officer
Fifteen years of expertise designing digital products. I've worked with both Fortune 500 organizations and great startups.

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