Designing Happiness

Nov 2015 35 minutes

Pamela is in a fascinating pursuit of figuring out the underlying formular of online happiness. It was hooked.

Through an elaborate online study of 8000 people on 300 sites, collecting 1000 diaries, interviewing 500, and socially listening to 50 brands, Pamela Pavliscak dug deep down into how and when we experience happiness when we are online.

She found that we tend to return to those sites we associate with happiness and also recommend them to others. She explained how happiness makes us feel connected, in control, entertained, challenged, informed, smart, inspired, and creative1.

She describes 5 aspects of an experience we must consider as designers to help us create happy user experiences for our users:

  1. Ease. Easy is the starting point – without easy, there is no happy. Allows users to feel a sense of autonomy, control, and mastery.
  2. Trust. Trust is more than privacy and security settings. Trust is especially required with wearable devices as they become part of you. Authenticity, respect, and care are keywords for building trust.
  3. Creativity. The more emotions people associate with an experience, the happier they will be. Design for play, discovery, serendipity, and maker moments.
  4. Connection. Creating connections is not just about the number of the likes – it’s the meaning of likes. Let users feel a sense of belonging – of being like-minded and having a presence in the community.
  5. Meaning & Growth. Combine pleasure and purpose to help people be more awesome at what they do. Design for the continued knowledge over time – for learning experiences.

For more information, read the fascinating interview with Pamela at the UI-Patterns blog.

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