What does bad VUI look like? How to avoid it

Here are some suggestions for how to avoid losing customers with bad VUI.


  1. Just like those frustrating phone menus that never seem to offer the option you’re looking for, bad VUI offers a menu list that is long, confusing and off-target. Keep options short and to the point.


  1. Open ended questions can lead to frustration and confusion. Instead of “How can I help you?” offer a more specific question such as, “Where would you like to travel?”


  1. Narrow options prevent the user from being specific. Instead of requiring a general “yes” or “no” allow the user to be in charge by giving them options of what to ask for. “You can say things such as ‘view my checking,’ ‘find a branch’ or ‘help.’ The addition of “such as” as an option for the user can keep the conversation moving.


  1. Limited or non-contextual answers can prevent users from understanding where they are in the process. VUI answers that are too short or that transition users to the screen without telling them will be frustrating and confusing. Instead, offer a response that includes the user’s request in the response. “Alexa, will you turn on the light?” Response: “Sure. I’ll turn on the light.” And if the VUI is confused, offering an option that attempts to guess the user’s intent may be helpful. “Did you want to turn on the light?”


  1. A lack of variety of responses can make the experience boring. Strive for delight, not boredom in your user experiences.


  1. An inability to handle varied inputs from users means communication will break down and users will go elsewhere. Good VUI design anticipates a variety of inputs and plans for them.


While there are lots of ways to create bad VUI, there are also ways to build delightful VUI that will enhance your brand and keep your customers coming back for more. With the help of experienced designers like those at UpTop Corp, you can keep your business on the cutting edge and enhance the experiences of your customers.