Need to know

  • This article looks at behavioural design, that is designing services, products and processes to make it easier for consumers to make desired decisions. Behavioural design is an applied form of behavioural economics.
  • The goals of behavioural design are to change behavior, not attitudes. It can be applied to encourage a behavior, stop an unwanted behavior or to form a new habit.
  • Proponents of behavioural design believe that you should not engage in motivation-enhancing efforts like coupons and discounts. Instead, it is important to lower the thresholds for a changed behaviour.
  • Techniques to enable easier consumer decision making include reducing the number of choices, and the appeal of scarcity.

Through insights about the human psyche, it is possible to design services, products and processes to make it easier for the consumer to make the desired decisions. The concept has been named “Behavioural Design”, by Swedish psychologist Niklas Laninge and designer and civil engineer Arvid Janson. The goal is to create tools to convert to desired outcomes and change behaviours. In this context, design means not only the visual expression, more the process that leads to the outcome.