We know the formula. Great copy + great design = great user experience. One without the other is like a beautiful painting in a terrible museum.
Today’s Read takes us through the importance of copy and design or, rather, copy as design — microcopy. Things like button labels, hint text, error messages, and other bits of text on apps or websites that guides a user through an experience.
Many companies treat microcopy as an afterthought instead of a super-simple way to cleverly assist users as they interact with your brand/product. But small things deserve love, too! It could likely mean more conversions for you.
When done right, effective microcopy can:
- Alleviate users’ concerns by anticipating and answering specific questions that might arise.
- Bring friendly copy to a moment of failure. A poorly designed error message can fill users with (more) frustration. Diffuse that frustration with a bit of humor!
- Convey personality & sound more human à la Yelp’s rating system.
- Improve the rate of task completion and conversions — cha-ching!
Here are a few tips that can make a small bit of text have a huge impact:
- Avoid technical jargon.
- Use natural language to talk to your user like a person.
- Keep it short and helpful.
- Context is vital when it comes to jokes. It’s a bad look when a user loses a lot of work, then gets a message saying “Oops! We can’t seem to save your data”.
- Pair it with a picture that relates to the action or user’s feelings, like Mailchimp does here.