February 18, 2015 | Kayla Hollatz

We previously highlighted our top 5 favorite TEDTalks for web designers and digital marketers, but we thought user experience (UX) deserved its own category.

The 5 TEDTalks below address the role of beauty in web design, designing for conversions, and how humans come before data in creating lasting user experiences.


Cennydd Bowles: What is UX and why should you care?

In this TEDTalk, Cennydd highlights how beautiful websites make users happier, more productive, and more loyal. He relates the bias toward attractive individuals to the bias toward beautiful web designs. This is primarily because “beauty makes things easier to use.”

This TEDTalk is just over 20 minutes so it serves as a great basic course in UX for those who want to learn more.

Sheena Iyengar: How to make choosing easier

Sheena’s TEDTalk is one of our favorites here in the office (we referenced it in a post about having too many options on landing pages). She talks in depth about the “choice overload” problem and how this negatively affects conversions.

She uses a jam case study (6 jars of jam vs. 24 jars of jam) to show that giving a customer less choices actually increases conversion rate. This talk is a must-see.

Rochelle King: The complex relationship between data and design in UX

If you’re interested in learning more about the relationship between designers, data, and users, this talk will be valuable. Rochelle opens her talk by asking the audience to think about the difference between designing in the physical world and the digital world.

She points out that “data and design are just two tools we use to actually craft experiences.

Kes Sampanthar: Reinventing user experience

Sev begins by addressing two schools of thought when creating engaging products: making things look pretty and including interactive games. Sev refutes both by saying neither gets at the fundamental issue of how you create compelling user experiences.

He highlights the importance of motivational design in three diverse examples. This is a great presentation if you are interested in usability engineering.

Margaret Gould Stewart: How giant websites design for you (and a billion others, too)

Margaret is in the business of optimizing digital experiences. As Facebook’s Director of Product Design, Margaret shares great insight on UX design and how no detail is too small. She believes that in order to design on a grand scale, you must have two things: audacity and humility.

One of my favorite quotes from the talk is, “It’s not about you and your portfolio; it’s about the people you’re designing for and how your work can help them live better lives.

There it is — our list of favorite UX TED Talks.

Which was your favorite presentation? Are there any others you would add to the list?

Let us know in the comment section below.



Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Our newsletter includes industry news, tips, and upcoming events!