Don't Make Me Think – Key Learning Points for UX Design for the Web -

Don’t Make Me Think – Key Learning Points for UX Design for the Web

There are many things to consider in UX design when creating the perfect user experience. From functionality and aesthetics to usability and accessibility, it can be hard to know where to focus your efforts. However, one aspect of UX design is often overlooked, even though it could be the most important; empty state.

As a UX Designer, it is important to be familiar with the different design styles and how to apply them. One of the most popular books on user experience is Steve Krugs Dont Make Me Think. Krug outlines his Golden Rule of Interface Design in this book: Dont make me think! Make it obvious!

In other words, the goal of good design is to minimize the cognitive load on the user. If a user has to think too much about how to use your product, they will likely become frustrated and give up. Therefore, designers need to anticipate the users needs and make the design as self-explanatory as possible.

Krug provides several examples of good design vs. bad design throughout the book. He also offers some helpful tips on reducing cognitive load for users, such as using conventions and signifiers. As a UX Designer, its important to be familiar with these ideas to create websites that are easy to use and enjoyable for your users. Lets look at some of the key points from the book.

An Overview To Dont Make Me Think

In his work as a usability consultant, Krug observed that many people struggled with the same problems when using software or websites. They were constantly having to think about how to use the product rather than being able to use it intuitively. From these observations, Krug developed his Golden Rule of Interface Design: Dont make me think! Make it obvious!

Good design should minimize the cognitive load on the user so they can easily use your product without putting much thought into it. This will help reduce frustration and increase satisfaction with your product. To achieve this goal, designers need to anticipate the users needs and make the design as self-explanatory as possible.

Implications Of The Golden Rule

There are several implications of Krugs Golden Rule that UX designers should keep in mind when creating designs. First, designers must be aware of cognitive biases affecting how users perceive and interact with their products. For example, confirmation bias is the tendency for people to seek out information that confirms their existing beliefs while ignoring information that contradicts those beliefs.

Designers should also be aware of common mental models that users bring into their interactions with your product. For example, one mental model is Hicks Law, which states that the more choices a person has, the longer it will take them to make a decision. Therefore, if you want users to quickly find what they are looking for on your website or app, you should limit the number of choices they have by grouping items together logically or using filters/search functionality.

Steve Krugs Dont Make Me Think is an excellent resource for UX designers who want to learn more about creating user-friendly designs that minimize the cognitive load on the user. By keeping Krugs Golden Rule in mind Dont make me think! Make it obvious!designers can create easy and enjoyable products for users to interact with.

Key Learning Points From Dont Make Me Think For UX Design On The Web

Here are some key takeaways from Steve Krugs book, Dont Make Me Think that are relevant for UX Designers working on the web:

Visibility Of System Status

One of the most important things for a website is that users should always be aware of what is happening. This means being clear about error messages, loading status, and other process indicators. If users are not kept in the loop, they will quickly become frustrated and may give up on using your site altogether.

Usability Is Paramount

The overarching goal of any good UX design is to ensure users can accomplish their goals easily and efficiently. To that end, designers need to focus on creating interfaces that are intuitive and easy to use. One way to achieve this is by eliminating unnecessary steps and ensuring that the most important information is front and center.

Match Between System And The Real World

The way your website works should match the way people think and work in the real world. For example, if youre designing a website for a hotel, it would make sense to have a search function that allows users to filter by location, number of guests, and dates of stay. These are all criteria that people would use in real life when searching for a hotel room.

On the other hand, if your search function only allowed users to filter by price, that wouldnt be very helpful since people generally have a range in mind when looking for a room. They dont just want the cheapest option. They want something thats affordable and meets their needs.

People Are Habitual

Once people have learned how to use a specific website or application, they generally dont like it when things change too much. Thats why designers must resist the temptation to constantly tinker with the interface and instead focus on making incremental improvements that will enhance the user experience without disrupting peoples workflow.

User Control And Freedom

Another important principle in Dont Make Me Think is that users should always feel like theyre in control of their experience on your website. This means giving them Undo/Redo options, letting them know where they are within the site (breadcrumbs), and not overwhelming them with too many choices at once.

Giving users too many options can lead to decision paralysis when people have so many choices that they cant decide what to do next. By providing clear paths and options for your users, you can help them navigate your site with ease.

Time Wasting Sucks

Nobody likes waiting, least of all internet users. Thats why designers need to create websites and applications that load quickly and dont require users to wait around for things to happen. One way to do this is by optimizing image sizes and using efficient code.

Let Me Go Back!

Have you ever been filling out a form on a website only to click the back button and lose all your progress accidentally? Its infuriating! As designers, we need to ensure that doesnt happen by ensuring that forms can be easily saved so users can pick up where they left off instead of starting from scratch.


These are just a few key learning points from Steve Krugs book Dont Make Me Think. As a UX Designer, its important to be familiar with these concepts to create websites that are easy to use and enjoyable for your users. By following these principles, you can help ensure that your users have a positive experience on your site.

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