How to design smart alternate to forms - Conversational UI

Digital forms are an adaptation from classic paper forms. Any organised corporation collects and record information from a customer prior to availing their services. With business becoming more data driven, it is essential to collect information to analyse market trends and user behaviour. This eventually guides all future decisions to be undertaken.

Forms have been effective at getting information but now users want to achieve more in way less time. Lengthy forms like above tend to loose users midways, so I’ll be talking about designing a conversational UI that I believe are more effective due to way less time consumption and it’s automation capabilities.

1. Ask relevant questions

Is this information required from user? Ask this question at every step. Loose all unnecessary questions, find an alternate to ask optional questions at later stage.

Access what informational is crucial for your operation

2. Assist with suggestions

Track user’s behaviour and use that information to assist him when he is expected to repeat that behaviour. 
Suggest user options based on his location, interests or past searches.

In above instance, Chandigarh and New Delhi could be user’s current location and home town. Based on user’s departure are populate nearby cities as suggestions. Manual controls should be given secondary importance.

3. Don’t hide the interface that can be easily accommodated

Lay the suggestions and actions in front of user instead of hiding them. Don’t let the user guess what they need to do, it should be an instinct. Below is a scenario where we can apply a swipe gesture, though it can accomplish the tasks too but the left option is effortless.

4. Give user control when information is diverse

Getting bio, note or any unpredictable information, ask to user for same. With better voice recognition, it’s even easier to fill long descriptions. 
Punching the keypad for straight 5 minutes is a thing of past.

Siri integration is best example.

5. UX Writing

Be clear, concise and useful with your writing. Don’t push unnecessary information down user’s throat. Study and iterate what the user is more likely to do.

Here’s a great article on UX Writing and things it can help you achieve:

An example from above blog:


Thank you for reading. 
Looking forward to your feedback and suggestion in comments.