profession February 8, 2019

Designing for Feedback: 5 Tips for Improvement

How many times do we ask ourselves “Am I doing this right?”, “Is this actually relevant?” and “Why am I wasting time with something that looks so insignificant?”
When this happens, it’s usually an indication that, in most cases, we need further feedback. It requires more than simply looking at Google Analytics or listening to our gut. Designers need some proper users’ feedback. We need tests, surveys, and continually iterating our projects.

Why does feedback matter so much? Can’t you just make it pop?

Thinking that just by having a great looking design will guarantee success is a common mistake. Hopefully, with all the buzz that’s been going on about User Experience, people are beginning to be more aware. It takes more than having a nice color palette and beautiful micro-interactions.

Without proper research, testing and feedback, there’s no way to know if the product will thrive and hit those wanted sales.
It’s an important part of designing since it allows for improvement and, ultimately, results in overall satisfaction.
There are multiple resources such as forms, polls, and even in-store experiences.

Alternatively, companies are also using tools such as social media, bots and live chat to collect feedback. But regardless of the method, it’s important to know how to appeal in order for it to happen.

feedback-bot-melted
Haptik feedback bot example.

Tips for gaining significant feedback

1.Simplify the language

This is a common mistake in all areas and designers are no exception.
An example that comes to my mind is medical surveys.
Often times they jargon that, to the patients, isn’t completely clear.
Active ingredient, medicine trade name, and causative events are some of the terms that I found in a survey that it’s both for healthcare professionals and patients.
My advice would be to separate it accordingly.
This way, patients would feel more inclined to answer a survey with everyday expressions, while the medical professionals would still feel at ease with their survey as well.

2.Shorten it up

How would you feel if I ask you to give your feedback on a 5-page long form? You wouldn’t even open it, right? Even worse if you had to reply using your smartphone.
Something longer than 10 questions is quite long for today’s attention span.
Unless you have some kind of reward, I believe very few people will give you the feedback you need. Myself included.
So the key tip is to make only the essential questions and cut out the unnecessary “grease”. Sure, you might want to collect more data but isn’t there any other opportunity?

3.Make it simple and recognizable

Let’s go back to the previous example. Imagine that you really need to ask 10 or more questions.
If that’s the case, you need to simplify as much as you can. You also need to use recognizable systems so that respondents don’t feel confused.
Avoid multiple questions at the same time and don’t alter the natural order to respond. Go from the least to the best result, and do not mix them up.
Also, use the type of questions that people are most used to seeing.

4.Fight the boring feedback stigma

So you need to use checkboxes, scales and all of those options. Does it mean that you have to make it look boring? No, it does not.
Typeform and Hotjar are two great examples that are both practical and appealing. Use them for inspiration or to create custom feedback forms.

Great feedback animation example from Marina Lopez.

5.Leave it open for additional input

Assuming that you can predict everything your user needs is egocentric. The same goes for feedback. Your user can feel the need to express other concerns that you haven’t thought about before.
So besides asking what you need, make sure there’s room for further input.
You might even get surprised by how often people are glad to leave additional comments.

To sum it up

Next time you design for feedback, picture yourself giving it. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes and answer. If you see it as being something that’s boring, complex or not intuitive enough, surely you won’t be the only one.

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.