Upon opening a page, the user will usually see prompts to actions, for example, endorsing your connections’ skills. It’s human nature to enjoy helping friends, so prompting this guided action works because it’s something they want to do anyway, but may not have thought of it on their own. The benefit to LinkedIn is that it encourages deeper involvement with their site, furthering both the users’ investment and experience. Spotify Guided action can be used on a more subtle level than LinkedIn. By visually emphasizing key functions, controls, and buttons, a designer can suggest and draw attention to preferred actions, much in the same way as a call-to-action is emphasized. As you can see above, just look at how badly Spotify wants you to download them compared to, say, look at their features.
Web Patterns has more examples of the surreptitious ways to use guided actions. Conclusion UI design elements like input controls, navigation, default settings, and guided actions are all components of a successful UI; however, it’s your choice on how you implement them. These elements are all versatile and can be used with flexibility. The special leads decisions you make in what kind of UI design elements will affect your site’s personality as a whole, so take care in choosing which ones will appropriately represent you. For practical advice on building web interfaces based on examples from top companies like AirBnB, Wufoo, Linkedin, and more, check out Web UI Best Practices. Got any other advice about user interfaces? Share them in the comments.