The Psychology of Design: 5 Tips to Reassure Customers

Credit: Pixabay

Whether you’re just starting a business or working on your tenth startup, you should understand how you can put your prospective customers at ease, win trust, and drive purchases.

Your brand messaging is only as effective as the visual design that supports the messaging.

So, let’s take a look at how you can reassure customers and prospects with these five design tips.

1. Provide the right content.

The content on a product package, web design, or advertisement is one of the first design considerations you must nail down.

Certain content always provides reassurance when present. According to the experience analytics experts at ContentSquare, when it comes to reassurance, three elements are essential for online retailers:

  1. Customer service number. Subtly placed in the header and at each stage of the checkout, a customer service number offers users the possibility to contact a representative at every moment. On a mobile website, it’s important to take advantage of the ability to call directly.
  2. FAQ. An FAQ allows users to find answers to common questions without the need to speak with a customer service representative. It is an excellent communication tool and reduces the load on customer service.
  3. Secure payment. Secure Payments are a must that it is useful to remember! To reassure users, present the logos for accepted methods of payment from the cart page and make sure that security is optimal: secure https protocol, secure server SSL padlock icon, etc.

The right content is about more than your business name or your logo. Figure out what information your potential customers need to know to feel secure in their purchase decision. Then build that information into your design.

Every type of design has its own unique content needs. A website is naturally the most information-dense and requires secure payment info, while product packaging or signage can only fit so much.

Prioritize the important content for each type of design.

2. Choose reassuring colors.

Color makes a significant impact on how people perceive everything.

According to a study examining the effect of color on sales, 92.6% of people surveyed by the CCI: Institute for Color Research said that color was the most important factor when purchasing products.

Another study showed that people make a subconscious judgment about a person, environment, or thing within 90 seconds. That judgment was influenced, in 62%-90% of examples, by color alone.

The right color for your brand is initially defined when you create a company logo. Other color decisions naturally flow from that initial choice as you develop a color palette for your brand identity.

As a general rule of thumb, shades of blue tend to be perceived as calming and trustworthy. Soft, warm colors often inspire feelings of emotional warmth or happiness. And, monochromatic palettes are more soothing than multicolor designs with high contrast.

But, as always, view these options through the lens of what is appropriate for your product, service, and brand.

3. Create space and ease with your design layout.

Overall design layout can cause feelings of tension or ease.

Chaotic placement of graphics and copy convey agitation and stress. So, avoid overly busy designs, loud patterns, or poorly balanced asymmetrical layouts.

To create a sense of peace and ease:

  • Use plenty of white space to give both graphics and text room to “breathe.”
  • Create a visual balance between graphics and text.
  • Remember that western audiences read from left to right. So place design elements accordingly, so it’s easy for your target market to find what they need.

Order, balance, open space, and logical flow foster relaxation in customers and potential customers. Prioritize these traits in your design layouts and branding to reassure viewers.

4. Pick easy-to-read fonts.

Hard-to-read typography creates stress.

People don’t want to struggle to read your website, product packaging, or signage.

Legible, brand-appropriate fonts reduce stress and support your reassuring messaging.

And, don’t forget to consider the overall appearance of the font.

Fonts have a psychological impact on people. The emotion generated from font choice is directly tied to the letters’ shape and our psychological response to those shapes.

All typography is made up of lines and shapes, so choose your fonts wisely.

5. Tap into nostalgia.

If you’re looking for ways to give your customers warm, fuzzy feelings, we’d be remiss if we failed to mention the power of nostalgia.

David Ludden Ph.D. explains for Psychology Today,

… research shows that people engage in nostalgic reverie when they’re feeling low in an attempt to boost their mood and self-confidence.

Experimental evidence indicates that nostalgia is experienced as an overwhelmingly positive emotion. It has the effect of boosting one’s mood as well as increasing a sense of meaning in life.

Consider looking to the past if you want to win customers. This is especially evident in current product design trends, as companies combine nostalgic design elements with modern technologies.

Many past design fads conjure up comfort, warmth, and fondness. Above all else, choose a style that will resonate with your audience.

Without trust and a certain degree of comfort, people won’t buy your products or services.

Inspire comfort with your brand and confidence in your products or services by following these design tips.

For more insights on ways you can reassure customers, read The Psychology of Design: Win Customers with Reassuring Design.