Interface Aesthetics Effect on Usability: A Comparison of Two Screen Designs

  • Liang ZhaoEmail author
  • Mihaela Vorvoreanu
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9731)


An empirical study was conducted to examine whether the redesigned version of an online interactive visual analytics platform has a positive effect on perceived usability. 8 participants took part in the experiment, completed 8 tasks and answered follow-up interviews. The results show that the effect on perceived usability is positive, and it provides insights of participants’ attitude toward the correlation between aesthetics and usability. Limitations and future work are addressed after the discussion.


Interface Aesthetics Usability Comparison 


  1. 1.
    Albert, W., Tullis, T.: Measuring the User Experience: Collecting, Analyzing, and Presenting Usability Metrics. Morgan Kaufmann, Newnes (2013)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bargas-Avila, J.A., Hornbæk, K.: Old wine in new bottles or novel challenges: a critical analysis of empirical studies of user experience. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 2689–2698. ACM, May 2011Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bradley, C.P.: Turning anecdotes into data—the critical incident technique. Fam. Pract. 9(1), 98–103 (1992)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    David, A., Glore, P.R.: The impact of design and aesthetics on usability, credibility, and learning in an online environment. Online J. Distance Learn. Adm. 13(4), X (2010)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Hartmann, J., Sutcliffe, A., De Angeli, A.: Investigating attractiveness in web user interfaces. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 387–396. ACM, April 2007Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Kallio, T.: Why we choose the more attractive looking objects - somatic markers and somaesthetics in user experience. In: Proceedings of the DPPI 2003, pp. 142–143. ACM Press (2003)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Lin, Y., Zhang, W.J.: Integrated design of function, usability, and aesthetics for automobile interiors: state of the art, challenges, and solutions. Proc. Inst. Mech. Eng., Part I: J. Syst. Control Eng. 220, 697–708 (2006)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Marshall, M.N.: Sampling for qualitative research. Family Pract. 13(6), 522–526 (1996). Sage, Park, CACrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Miller, M., Choi, G., Chell, L.: Comparison of three digital library interfaces: open library, Google books, and Hathi Trust. In: Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE Joint Conference on Digital Libraries, pp. 367–368 (2012)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Patton, M.Q.: Qualitative Evaluation and Research Methods, 2nd edn. Sage, Newbury (1990)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Madhavan, K., Elmqvist, N., Vorvoreanu, M., Chen, X., Wong, Y., Xian, H., Johri, A.: DIA2: Web-based Cyberinfrastructure for Visual Analysis of Funding Portfolios (2014)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Patton, M.Q.: Designing qualitative studies. Qual. Res. Eval. Methods 3, 230–246 (2002)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Purchase, H.C., Hamer, J., Jamieson, A., Ryan, O.: Investigating objective measures of web page aesthetics and usability. In: Conferences in Research and Practice in Information Technology Series, vol. 117, pp. 19–28 (2011)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Quinn, J.M., Tran, T.Q.: Attractive phones don’t have to work better: independent effects of attractiveness, effectiveness, and efficiency on perceived usability. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2010, pp. 353–362 (2010)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Reinecke, K., Yeh, T., Miratrix, L., Mardiko, R., Zhao, Y., Liu, J., Gajos, K.Z.: Predicting users’ first impressions of website aesthetics with a quantification of perceived visual complexity and colorfulness. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - CHI 2013, pp. 2049–2058 (2013). (Retrieved)
  16. 16.
    Sauer, J., Sonderegger, A.: The influence of prototype fidelity and aesthetics of design in usability tests: effects on user behaviour, subjective evaluation and emotion. Appl. Ergonomics 40(4), 670–677 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Sauer, J., Sonderegger, A.: The influence of product aesthetics and user state in usability testing. Behav. Inf. Technol. 30(6), 787–796 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    van Schaik, P., Ling, J.: The role of context in perceptions of the aesthetics of web pages over time. Int. J. Hum Comput Stud. 67(1), 79–89 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Sonderegger, A., Sauer, J.: The influence of design aesthetics in usability testing: effects on user performance and perceived usability. Appl. Ergonomics 41(3), 403–410 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Strebe, R.: Visual aesthetics of websites: the visceral level of perception and its influence on user behaviour. In: Gradmann, S., Borri, F., Meghini, C., Schuldt, H. (eds.) TPDL 2011. LNCS, vol. 6966, pp. 523–526. Springer, Heidelberg (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Thüring, M., Mahlke, S.: Usability, aesthetics and emotions in human–technology interaction. Int. J. Psychol. 42(4), 253–264 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Tractinsky, N.: Aesthetics and apparent usability: empirically assessing cultural and methodological issues. In: Proceedings of the ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 115–122. ACM, March 1997Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Tractinsky, N., Katz, A.S., Ikar, D.: What is beautiful is usable. Interact. Comput. 13(2), 127–145 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Van der Heijden, H.: Factors influencing the usage of websites: the case of a generic portal in The Netherlands. Inf. Manag. 40(6), 541–549 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    van Schaik, P., Ling, K.M., Kashimura, K.: Apparent usability vs. inherent usability: experimental analysis on the determinants of the apparent usability. In: Conference Companion on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 292–293. ACM, May 1995Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    van Schaik, P., Ling, J.: The role of context in perceptions of the aesthetics of web pages over time. Int. J. Hum.-Comput. Stud. 67(1), 79–89 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Wang, Y.J., Hernandez, M.D., Minor, M.S.: Web aesthetics effects on perceived online service quality and satisfaction in an e-tail environment: the moderating role of purchase task. J. Bus. Res. 63(9–10), 935–942 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Computer Graphics TechnologyPurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA

Personalised recommendations