Some of us don’t think it matters how a product looks (or feels, sounds, smells even). It’s what it does that matters. But I disagree. I think there are concrete reasons why a good looking product is an easy-to-use product. For me, those reasons make it worthwhile investing time, effort and money in aesthetics.

A high-quality visual (or other sensory) experience makes a product easier-to-use because it:

  • Creates the right first impression – opening the interaction with a pleasant experience
  • Helps to showcase (and to encourage) real simplicity – reducing the number of features
  • Reveals and supports the illusion of the┬ámental model – how the user thinks the product works

Good design is more than surface deep. It runs top-to-bottom. But the surface matters too. How will your users believe that your product works well underneath – where they can’t see – if no-one cared about the bit they can see?