Gamification is a technique being used by companies around the world for multiple purposes, such as making learning easy, collect data, increase sales numbers, entertain, and provide good experiences to customers.
Gamification is the usage of gaming elements in products that aren’t games such as websites or apps. Some of those elements applied to websites are rewards, countdowns, progression bars and maps that show where the user is.
A good gamification strategy should be based on:
- Rules – that explain what the user is allowed to do or not during his interaction with the product.
- Predefined goals – a clear indication of what the user will attain. Goals keep us motivated and their accomplishment release dopamine, a neurotransmitter that makes us feel good.
- Feedback – to work, a gamification system demands that the users are updated about their progress. It can be displayed as progress bars, encouragement messages or other forms.
- Rewards – once the user hit a certain goal, he should be rewarded before moving to the next one. The most common rewards include badges, points, leaderboards, and coins.
- Generating motivation – the user should be reminded of why he’s playing. Some people are more motivated than others, so it’s important to find out the reason why someone is playing and use the proper arguments to inspire them when their playing frequency decreases.
A gamification strategy can be made of one or multiple elements. These elements are developed to promote competition (against other people), find objects, achievements, completion (of different levels), for quizzes and puzzles.
Why gamification strategies work
According to Bitcatcha, gamification strategies work because:
- Gamification gives control to users, allowing them to choose if they continue doing something or stop. In the example below, the Life Fasting app allows you to stop your fasting before you reach the goal or continue fasting after hitting the goal.
- It provides maps to users that help them know where they are and where they are going.
- Reinforces good behavior, by rewarding the user every time he does something good, such as not skipping a lesson, or receiving likes after posting a photo on a social media platform.
- Reinforces the idea of achievement, which is then reflected in the return of the user to the website.
- Promotes self-competition and drives people to reach personal goals that make them feel better.
- After competing with ourselves, it allows us to compete against other people, because “of course, we are better than everyone”.
- We love roleplaying and escape to alternate places.
- 8. People love rewards and exclusivity.
- Teamwork and collaborative experiences allow us to share achievements with other people. For example, backing a project on a crowdfunding platform such as Kickstarter.
- We’re constantly searching for ways to produce dopamine and become easily addicted to games. Facebook, Instagram, and other social media networks exploit this vulnerability of ours by loading new content every time we reach the bottom or top of the page, forcing us to do not leave the page before we see the new content loaded.