With the rise of UX trends which focus on client servicing rather than a simple exchange of goods, designers face new and uncharted creative waters. Whether you design for B2B professionals or B2C customers, microinteractions can effectively make or break your project. However, knowing which microinteraction aspects apply to your demographic can be tricky.

According to Top Tal, 53% mobile site visits are abandoned outright if the load times are longer than three (3) seconds, with 62% of customers stating that they are very unlikely to engage with a brand that left them dissatisfied ever again. While it may seem harsh at first, it’s worth noting that businesses rarely offer exclusive one-of-a-kind and irreplaceable products or services.

Customers and clients alike will always settle for websites and apps which respect their time and resources through smart UX design and thought-out microinteractions. With that said, let’s take a look at several microinteraction mistakes which can heavily influence your online store’s or application’s longevity on the market in order to avoid creative decisions which can make users hate your design.

Benefits of Well-Designed Microinteractions
In short, microinteractions represent every user engagement which results in one-press results. For example, if a user clicks on your “Blog” button, a successful microinteraction would lead them to the list of latest blog posts.

While it may seem arbitrary at first, coming up with intuitive and creative ways to cut down on user clicks for the sake of UX improvement can be tricky. However, well-designed microinteractions can bring a plethora of advantages to your project compared to others on the market, including but not limited to:
· Simplification of complex themes into a user-friendly UX
· Higher user engagement and conversion rates
· Website or app longevity due to an intuitive user interaction
· Brand building, industry authority and positive word of mouth

Microinteraction Mistakes to Keep in Mind

Splendor over Utility
It’s true that the first contact most people will have with your product, website or app will come from its visual identity. High-quality graphics, creative design choices, and illustrative elements will always add to the positive reception of your product with the public. However, you should never cross the proverbial line and focus on visual fidelity over UI and UX design.

Mike Craddock, UX Lead at DotLabel says “It is important to make things easy for a web visitor. Too many options or distractions can lead to a mental overload and mean that the user gives up and goes elsewhere- probably your competitor. There is a careful balance to be struck between creating a nice looking design, and a design that provides an intuitive and easy experience”

Find a balance of good graphic design choices and utility in your microinteraction placement and the end users will thank you for it through recurrent use.

Excess Scrolling
Scrolling is an unavoidable part of web and application development. However, you can use scrolling to your advantage. You should try to place as much content as possible into a single, responsive window as possible. Make sure that your website or app can be used both on desktop computers and smartphone devices in terms of the amount of content it shows at any given moment. No matter how intuitive your scrolling animation may be, users will more often than not become aware of the fact that they are hitting their scroll bars or wheels far too often.

You can amend for this shortcoming by integrating scrolling in a drag-and-drop manner, similar to what is commonly used on smartphones. Unify your microinteraction experience regardless of the platform and your users will stay engaged over longer periods of time.

Long Transition Animations
As we’ve previously stated, load times longer than three seconds often result in the users’ frustration and abandonment of said website or app. However, load times can be masked with animations, quotes or other interesting elements on the user’s display.

Long transition animations will have a similar effect to long load times most of the time, resulting in hate toward your design choices. Mask your load times with small messages to preoccupy the user for a moment. By the time they’ve digested the quote, thought or tip you’ve presented, the next page will have loaded for their convenience.

hourglass

Immersion-breaking Pop-ups
Depending on the business model you settle on for your app or website, you may need to integrate some form of advertisement into the product at the end of the day. However, excessive pop-ups, immersion-breaking banner ads unrelated to your industry and other obtrusive marketing content can seriously harm your UX appeal. The situation is made even worse if the “x” buttons on your popups and ads are very small, hard to find or lead to more popups.

A great way to gather ad revenue and design an immersive, cohesive UX is to rely on a native advertisement. Find creative ways to integrate products and services you advertise into the content of your website or app. A simple two-sentence paragraph in your blog post will be much more appealing to a would-be customer than an aggressive popup or banner ad would.

Lack of Design Cohesion
Speaking of cohesion, your product’s design should present a whole in every aspect. Whether you have an eCommerce store or a new app to complement your first one – design cohesion matters. It’s good practice to develop a style guide early on and distribute it among your designers and web developers for good measure.

Instruct the creatives on your team to stick to the outlined brand standards without any form of deviation. If a user spots small but glaring mistakes in your UI (for example, a drastically different font), it will spell disaster for their microinteraction experience with your design. Stay on brand with your products at all times and it will augment your microinteractions considerably in the long run.

No Clear Action Triggers
Action triggers or calls to action (CTA) are an essential part of an engaging UX. Calls to action should be placed across your UI to help users navigate through your app or website more easily. For example, a simple “Back to Home Page” in addition to a Home pictogram can do a lot to help your users’ microinteractions.

Remember that not all users will speak your language or share the same professional background or age – it’s imperative for you to create a balanced UX to amend for that. It’s also good practice to develop an on-brand call to action writing methodology with tools such as Hemingway to further streamline your UI and navigation. Place clearly understandable action triggers or CTAs into your product and the users will instinctively use them to navigate, purchase or interact with your content.

Complicated Feedback Loop
Lastly, users will most likely want to share their feedback in regards to your UX design choices, GUI elements and their overall experience with your product, site or app. It’s imperative for you to create an environment where users can easily submit comments and tag them as development feedback, bug fixes and other UX improvements for your team to work with.

Don’t create a complicated system of feedback submission – create a clear, one-press button where users can start typing and send comments to you quickly and easily. This will encourage people to reach out and share their thoughts on your work since it won’t take too much of their time. Failing to do this will result in a failed microinteraction which will effectively push people away from sharing feedback with your team.

In Summary
The overall UX design you create will only be as good as the individual microinteractions that go into it. Start your design process with small interactions and intuitive navigation solutions before moving on to graphics and content production.

With the right selection of microinteractions, you can create an inviting, user-friendly engagement loop for people to enjoy and share with their friends and family. Be on the lookout for potential microinteraction difficulties and have designers on stand by to fix them as they come – the rest is up to your ever-growing user base.

Guest Blog written by Samantha Brannon. Samantha is a blogger and freelance writer. She is also the contributing editor for The Essay Typer. Samantha loves self-education and rock music. You can connect with her via Twitter.

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