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The Law of Prägnanz and Digital Marketing

September 22, 2016

The Law of Prägnanz and Digital Marketing

The Law of Prägnanz, also known as the law of simplicity, is the theory that “People will perceive and interpret ambiguous or complex images as the simplest form(s) possible.” This law is one of the fundamental principles of Gestalt psychology; the theory of understanding laws in our ability to acquire and maintain simple perception in an otherwise chaotic form.

For instance:

Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

Although at first glance it looks like another language (other than english), as you attempt to read it, it becomes more “readable” due to the Law of Simplicity. As you just noticed, when you read or view something that looks complex your mind tries to break it down in the simplest form, which makes it more accepting to you for you to continue reading it or viewing it.

Digital Marketing can be viewed in the same sense; users are on a search engine because they are looking for a solution to a problem, no matter how complex it may be. When scrolling through the search engine, users are looking for the most simplistic form of solution to that problem. As marketing has always taught us, whoever can grab someones attention and keep it is the one who has the most traffic, this law of simplicity goes hand-in-hand with that philosophy.

It is important that you remember that your website and marketing campaign is not for your appeal but for the appeal of your users. U/X or user experience is one of the most important factors of how you keep users on your site and engaged. If your site is very complex and doesn't get to the point, you will experience a high bounce rate. However, if your site is well structured and sends users seamlessly to what they are looking for, you are highly likely to keep that user engaged on your site.

Just ask yourself this question… When was the last time you bought something you didn’t understand?

Simplicity Sales, Complexity Fails!!!