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    How to Design Visual Signals for Superior UX? Why are Visual Signals so Influential?

    23 February 2021

    Visual signals or visual cues are everywhere. You’ve seen them all over pointing to the direction the website wants to take you. They are so frequently used in a website or application they often seem obvious. Some websites have visual cues so subtly used that the users only give a small gaze and get directed towards the action they need to take. 

    No matter how the visual signals are used in a website or application, no one can deny that they play an important role in making the user experience better and effortless. Using the correct visual cues in the right places not only enhances the user interface, but also helps a website achieve its specific goals like signups, or purchases using behavioral psychology. 

    Visual Cues for Better UX

    The average user’s attention span is constantly decreasing with time. It has become challenging to hold a visitor’s focus on your website long enough to convert. To design visual cues that help with appealing interfaces and better UX, you need to understand how human psychology works. Some visual signals work better than others. Effective visual cues need some planning to make. Here are some examples of visual cues and how to make them influential for better UX:


    Arrows are explicit visual cues that point visitors to the direction they need to go. Most websites use arrows as the visual cue of call-to-action to move to the next page. According to studies, hand-drawn arrows pointing at the content direction are able to attract the most attention from visitors.

    Line of Sights

    People are born curious. If you see someone in front of you gazing at something, you will be naturally intrigued to look in the same direction. Many web pages use this idea in their visual cues to improve engagement. Suppose you incorporate a picture of a person facing and staring at the call-to-action button of your website, visitors will naturally follow the button. 

    Why are visual signals so influential?

    People make a quick judgment when they visit a website. First impressions only take a few seconds to form. A designer must know how to use these few seconds rapidly with structure, colors, spacing, symmetry, amount of text, fonts, and more. So, design cues are important in creating a positive first impression. Here are a few reasons why:

    Average users pay far more attention to the visuals of a site rather than the contents. Designers can use their precious memories to stimulate the visuals of a site. For example, using an arrow to direct to the call-to-action button. A user has already seen arrows pointing direction before, so this time they will automatically know what action to take. 

    Visual cues, done right can be an influential asset to a website. You can use arrows, lines, photos of people, borders, pointing fingers, etc as visual cues for your website. The only rule is to know what works best.