Gamification in Website
In previous blogs we’ve talked about interactivity on websites and Dark Patterns in UX design, now we’d like to highlight an often-controversial feature in web and UX design, gamification. Gamification is the process of applying games design elements and game principles in a non-game context such as a website or an app. The best example is probably the language learning app Duolingo, think of the experience it offers users, for every lesson you complete you achieve points, there is in app purchases with those points and a community element where you can compete against “Classmates”. Duolingo has helped millions of people all over the world learn languages and has a dedicated following. However, some people claim gamification is manipulative, dishonest and tries to feed off people’s weaknesses, gambling and betting apps are a prime example of this where the UX design encourages frequent use. Our team at Artemee believe that there is a healthy middle ground where gamification can respect the user and create an enjoyable experience. We hope to highlight the most common features of gamification and some prime examples of their usage.
Page Loading Bars
The whole point of UX design is to make the experience of using a website or app as enjoyable as possible. Nothing is as boring or as annoying as waiting for a page to load or transition to the next page. To overcome this many new sites and apps have started utilizing dynamic transitions and animations between pages to hold the user’s attention.
This can be a double-edged sword as it increases a sites SEO ranking while at the same time if used too frequently can annoy users. Buzzfeed is famous for its use of quizzes, fun quizzes and polls is a great way engage your users and gain useful insights. But don’t overdo it!
Video games have become more social affairs, with the advent of online multiplayers people have met like minded individuals and explore the same universe. A website can benefit from creating and environment of collaboration and community by fostering a sense of community. This can be done by creating forums or in the case of Duolingo classrooms where users can interact with each other.
Points Based Features
Points can be a great way to try and encourage people to return to a site ad interact with it more frequently. This is the most common feature of gamification. Users can purchase features for points or achieve a new level on site, this creates an aim for the user to achieve.
Another common feature is a system of rewards for the achievement of a task or for completing an action on the site. Audible ( an ebook and podcast app from Amazon) is a prime example of how to use this feature. After listening for a period of time or at certain times you are rewarded with a “badge”, such as the Night Owl badge for listening to an ebook late at night or you achieve a different rank like scholar if you listen for over 400 hours.
We hope you have found this post helpful and would like to remind people these features are to improve the user experience and never to be used to manipulate people. Hopefully you can use some these features to make amazing and beautiful websites.