One of my favourite sessions at this past weekend’s PodCamp Toronto 2011, was given by Brian Cugelman about the psychology of websites. Humans treat computers like humans. In a nutshell, computer systems or websites which appear friendly in looks, wording, and IA, are more attractive to us humans. Systems and websites which appear unfriendly tend to turn us away.
This is why traditional marketing tactics and social psychology are vital to Ux and influencing the user to make that purchase. I can also see how adding elements like social proof, triggers, the concept of scarcity and authority has made social media networks so successful (well, most of them!. You get my drift).
Below is Brian’s slides from his presentation.