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Do Your Info Product Websites Mimic Human Behavior?

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Dr. Susan Weinschenk of What Makes Them Click? posted a thought-provoking video and accompanying article lately. It made me think, and it may make you ask an important question, too. Do your info product websites mimic human behavior?

Weinschenk comments on some of her research this way:

“When you go to a website or use an online application, you have assumptions about how the website will respond to you and what the interaction will be like. And many of these expectations mirror the expectations that you have for person-to-person interactions.

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Do Your Info Product Websites Mimic Human Behavior?

If the website is not responsive or takes too long to load, it is like the person you are speaking to not looking at you, or ignoring you. If the website asks for personal information too soon in the flow of the interaction, that is like the other person getting too personal.”

Isn’t that a fascinating perspective? We might not realize how our own expectations of our experience on websites mirrors our expectations of interactions with people. We like it when people respond quickly and genuinely, and we don’t like it when they pry into our private business. Right?

I really hadn’t thought much about the connection between the way we interact with people and the way we interact with websites, but Dr. Weinschenk’s comments make a lot of sense. She follows up by saying, “Designers tend to spend a lot of time on ‘macro’ design — layout, color, grids, navigation, as well they should, since those are important. But it is often the ‘micro’ interactions that determine whether or not a product or website is easy to use.”

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