Adding friction to journeys for memorability.
If there is something I’ve learnt over the past years of studying the brain and working within behavioural science and digital, it’s that people love to learn how they think, why they act a certain way and how other people’s minds work.
Using Behavioural methods in digital is a buzzword and potentially dangerous trend. We must use behavioural methods with caution, and in the right way.
Typically, in digital the mantra is to get people to the end of a journey quickly. This requires an understanding of human behaviour to decipher how people are likely to think and interact with digital interfaces. This enables people within UI to design experiences that are user friendly and seamless.
For ecommerce, it’s typically about getting people to the checkout as quickly as possible. If you have seen the social dilemma on Netflix, where the UI of social networks is creating an addictive world that is disruptive for our mental health and society. As leaders in digital, we have a responsibility to ensure this does not happen.
If we do not add friction to online experiences, we are risking creating a world that is creating zombies online. Are we zombies wading through websites?
The crux of my talk at Sitecore Symposium is to argue that we do in fact need to add friction to journeys especially for memorability.
Those interested in psychology might have read the book ‘Thinking fast and slow’, which introduces the idea of two ways of thinking. In psychology terms, it’s known as System 1 and System 2 thinking. System 1 thinking is effortless and automatic, whereas system 2 thinking is conscious, it's effortful.
In many key areas of user journeys, I argue that we need to change system 1 thinking into system 2 thinking. So we are changing what is usually an automatic thinking process into an effortful thinking process. There is a skill to adding enough friction to make people think, but not too much to become a disruptive blocker in the journey.
Friction can be introduced using various behavioural techniques, which can help increase memorability and engagement to increase band affinity and awareness.
My talk goes into 3 behavioural techniques to help increase friction across your journey. I cover cognitive strain which makes us think harder, thus increasing memorability, with examples of gamification, the zeigarnik principles and incongruence. The second technique I discuss is the peak end rule, where we remember an average of two points of a given experience. Using this to our advantage across a journey can help form positive experiences online. The third technique looks at chunking to increase friction in a positive way, for example using comparison tools which make the users think more about a purchase online.
If you’d like to hear more about these techniques with specific examples, get in touch with Beatrice@lab.co.uk
- Using behavioural methods in digital is a potentially dangerous trend.
- We must use behavioural methods with caution, and in the right way.
- We need to add friction to journeys especially for memorability.