6 examples of fantastic UX

While some designers champion psychological trickery as a means to make websites more effective, the best web user experiences can have an influence that is both positive and honest. Here are six examples of UX design at its best.

Learn from the best web design case studies

UX, or user experience, is a measure of the ease and pleasure users enjoy when navigating a site. In the following slideshow Digital Arts interviewees discuss the sites they believe display some of the best examples of good UX around - sites you should use and learn from. For more on UX best practice, read UX secrets revealed

Powerful emotional design

Simon Norris argues that the best emotional design is "about tapping into factors that influence us in terms of pleasure and joy", an example being the Threadless.com cart's animated smiling face. "It plays on the emotional side of our behaviour and makes us feel more connected and engaged with the website," he says

Human faces, simplicity and a strong psychological draw

JustGiving makes use of psychology to engage with its audience: human faces; succinct text; few paths for a low cognitive load; and the 'peer effect', where you see others' donations and may follow accordingly

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The masters of positive thinking

Apple's site is a masterclass in positive thinking. "You're on dangerous ground playing negative emotional strings," explains Joe Leech, "but engender positive emotion by associating your product with things that make people happy and you’ve got a halo effect"

Clarity and contrast

Squarespace's pricing page makes use of psychological techniques to engage visitors and increase conversions: clarity and few choices (for lower cognitive load); and contrast (both in extra features per tier and flagging a choice they'd like you to go for)

Engaging visuals and human interest

Simon Norris thinks Sky Rainforest Rescue is a great example of how a website can capture an audience through visual language and engaging images, many of which involve people

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A lesson in positive psychology

Amazon uses positive psychological techniques to drive sales. "Get yourself a little something," is based on a personal wish list