A functioning website is no longer enough to distinguish a brand from its competitors. To stand out, digital assets need to look good, work seamlessly, and respond immediately to the user’s needs. Time-saving designs appeal to the ever shorter attention of website visitors. Time is critical to success in mobile and desktop environments.
Visitors to the site are no longer willing to scroll through the content page by page to find the answers they need. If a website doesn’t get to the point quickly, the Back button provides a simple exit plan and access to the next relevant search result. If your brand is struggling with low visit times and conversion rates, consider a time-saving design to create visitor satisfaction and promote conversions, regardless of how much time you spend on a page.
The impact of attention times on digital experiences
Microsoft published a fascinating study on attention span and technology two years ago. The results showed a reduction in attention duration of four seconds over a period of 13 years. In 2013, the average attention span of a human was one second shorter than that of a goldfish. All web, usability and UX designers need to take this information into account when developing and optimizing online pages.
Websites and applications that are successful today provide more than very relevant information. They are eye-catching in the first moments a visitor loads the site. They rely on psychology to draw the visitor’s eye to the main content of the site, and they inspire micro-interactions and conversions. The time-saving design boom, as several recent articles on the topic of “top design trend” have highlighted, is a direct response to the human need for a targeted and guided website experience.
What is time-saving design?
Time-saving designs are simple, but not too simplified. Navigation, content and title will direct all users to the information, CTA or form they need to move to the next step of the customer journey.
One of the most common design styles used in time-saving websites is linear design. Sites in the logical, often chronological or early to middle range follow linear structures. Instead of presenting each page of the website in a drop-down menu, these websites often provide only the most relevant information on the home page and then lead users to additional pages based on customer tracking.
While companies are looking for ways to provide a more personalized brand experience, they are naturally turning to intuitive, efficient, and streamlined designs. Any digital asset that accelerates the customer experience and increases visitor satisfaction can fall into the category of a time-saving design.
Time management is part of the natural development of design trends. In the near future, advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning will allow designers to create ever more efficient websites. The concepts design emphasis on technology that allow to gain time, not only to streamline the navigation and recovery of user’s content, but anticipate the needs of users relevant to the delivery of content.
Time-saving designs apply to mobile and desktop user experiences and may include innovations that correlate with lower website visit times and higher conversion rates. Examples of time-saving designs can be found on the websites of Uber, Virgin America and Airbnb.
On the other side of the coin, a time-saving design creates obstacles to the visitor’s experience. For example, a symptom checker that requires a user to know the health issue category before seeing a list of possible symptoms would be a numerical obstacle. Navigation on the website is neither intuitive nor fast.
Web Design Elements That Save Users Time
Time-saving design refers to the user experience or the end result of a website design. A component does not create a time-saving Design. Only a masterly set of components can create a user experience that reduces the time it takes a user to respond to a CTA. Design elements that save UX developers and web designers time include::
Minimalist inspired Navigation. Time-saving designs encourage users to take a limited number of steps from the moment they click until they act. Clear, eye-catching and optimized buttons, links, forms and menus can save users time when accessing a website.
Visually rich content. Combine action-inspiring messages with photos, graphics, and other visual content to capture the eye, break down content, and promote actions. People process visual signals faster than text signals, making visually rich content more eye-catching and memorable.
Linear Progressions. Any website or app that wants to promote a particular behavior can use a linear design to encourage visitors to take certain actions. In addition to the” read more ” links that help a reader to act, consider breaking down the content into a story or linear progression. Move the drives through the client route and give each user the opportunity to continue their research or take action at each step.
Automated Suggestions. Personalized suggestions based on user actions increase the likelihood that a consumer will take action on a particular visit to the site. This idea is similar to the suggestions for similar items from Amazon.
These elements represent only a part of the possible construction functions that can save the user time. Use the individual elements that find the target population of a website useful, and take into account the thinking process of the average user when organizing the components of the website. The purpose and user base of each website are different and require a slightly different approach.
Is the time-saving design suitable for your company?
Some companies may not condense a website into a minimalist and Uber-like experience, but all companies can benefit from researching design elements that save time. Consumers want to see relevant information in an intuitive format, from selling B2B software products to offering a convenience-oriented delivery service.
Few visitors to digital websites appreciate the idea of browsing uninterrupted blocks of content and information pages to find actionable information. Price tables, summaries, infographics and summarized content, combined with well-placed links to long content, can provide elements that save the end user time without sacrificing the size or depth of the information covered.
As with most trends in interface design, ease of use and user experience, understanding the basic concept informs and enriches future design projects. Take the time-saving design elements that can help you reach your audience and leave behind what doesn’t work.
Best practices for creating time-saving designs
Discover design concepts that save time to create and optimize a website or app for better conversions. If the end user is satisfied with the user experience, the brand and user base benefit. For businesses, time-saving designs can lead to a better online reputation, optimized sales, and higher conversions. For users, time-saving websites streamline customer history and increase brand satisfaction. Use these best practices to integrate time-saving design elements into your next online project:
Search for your user base to understand customer history. Avoid that a temporary design trend outweighs users ‘ expectations. The target user base must always control the components used to create an online experience. Invest in qualitative and quantitative research to understand how average users behave online and what motivates them during an online experience.
With an understanding of the customer journey, designers can begin to identify important touchpoints along the way that speed up the process. From information on the conduct of action to the style of the registration form used on a specific page, customers get an overview of the design elements that save time.
Frequent Tests. Each digital experience goes through increasing pain before reaching maximum time savings. Use A / B testing and other usability testing to understand what works and what doesn’t on a specific Site, app, or page.
Use competitive intelligence. Learn how other companies are integrating time-saving design elements into digital assets and what consumers are saying about the online experience. Learn from the mistakes and successes of others to build a user experience that will save you time.
Maintain a level of consistency. A brand may choose to completely redesign an existing app or website in order to save time. However, new websites that replace existing ones can create a learning curve, even if the new Design is more technically intuitive. Make changes end users can apply easily and naturally to meet time-saving expectations.
Time-saving designs eliminate the Frustration of a brand experience, but each brand’s approach to time-saving design varies. Focus on end-users and logical design optimizations to create digital assets that support customer journeys, simplify user experiences, and drive brand satisfaction.