Learn about who we work with…

Scent of Information

What is Scent of Information?

The "scent of information" refers to the cues and indicators present in a user interface that help users assess the relevance and quality of the information they are seeking. It is based on the concept that users navigate through a website or application by following visual and textual cues that suggest they are on the right path to find the desired information.

Why is Scent of Information important?

By understanding and optimizing the scent of information, designers can create intuitive and user-friendly interfaces that guide users effectively towards their desired information, improving the overall user experience and task completion rates.

How to use Scent of Information?

Key points about the scent of information include:

Information Scent: The term "scent" metaphorically represents the trail or cues that guide users as they navigate through the interface. These cues can include headings, links, labels, icons, and other design elements that provide hints about the content and its relevance.

Goal-Directed Behavior: Users typically have specific goals or intentions when interacting with a website or application. The scent of information helps them assess whether the available cues align with their goals, providing an indication of the path they should follow.

Evaluation and Decision-Making: Users continuously evaluate the available cues to make informed decisions about which links or actions are likely to lead to the desired information. The strength of the scent determines their confidence and likelihood of clicking or exploring further.

Information Scent Decay: If the cues or indicators do not align with user expectations or lead to irrelevant information, the scent weakens, and users may abandon the current path and seek alternative routes.

Consistency and Context: Maintaining consistency in visual cues and language across the interface helps users establish a coherent scent of information. Providing context and clear labeling further strengthens the scent, reducing ambiguity and confusion.

Iterative Improvement: Designers can enhance the scent of information by iteratively testing and refining the interface. User feedback, analytics, and usability testing can provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of the cues and help identify areas for improvement.

How can we help you?

Let’s Chat

About Akendi

Akendi is a human experience design firm, leveraging equal parts experience research and creative design excellence. We provide strategic insights and analysis about customer and user behaviour and combine this knowledge with inspired design. The results enable organizations to improve effectiveness, engage users and provide remarkable customer experiences to their audiences.