When it comes to creating a good user experience, is there a case that your design can be too good?
The Noun Project
The other day I was trying to buy some icons from The Noun Project. If you haven’t used this site yet, you will now – it’s a fantastic resource and beautifully designed.
With the Noun Project you get the chance to download the icons for free and attribute. But if you can’t be bothered with the detailed attribution process, you can simply purchase the icon and you’re done.
When design gets too good
Now, I won’t argue that it’s beautifully designed and crafted (it takes a lot of effort to customise forms like that). However, it just wasn’t what I was expecting.
There was something disconcerting about it – try it for yourself and see if you understand what I mean. Enter your card details in the big bold box. Enter your CCV (good job I figured out what that was – they could do with an explanation to improve the UX there too!).
What was I expecting?
The thing is, this is just one of those times when brilliant design is not what we’re used too.
Anyone has done any online banking, or is used to using PayPal, will know that the design is usually pretty bog standard. But somehow that familiarity, over time, means we are much more able to trust it, which is essential when you’re handing over your card details.
For some reason I just found the process on the Noun Project’s page too alien. I was expecting something more familiar, more trustworthy. Funny enough, something more akin to the PayPal experience you get if you click on the ‘Donate’ link in the footer of The Noun Project site.
The moral of the story
Don’t mess with the user experience for the sake of good design. The design works brilliantly for the rest of the site, and the user experience is a joy because of it.
But when we’re handing over our card details, we want something a little bit less funky.
Care to disagree? Comment below.