As a design term, ‘intuitive’ refers to a product’s immediate ease of use. An app or website, for example, could be described as intuitive if a user understands how it works within seconds (or milliseconds!) of encountering it.
However, two people may try the same product yet have totally different experiences, based on their age, proficiency with the relevant type of product, etc. That’s why a keen, in-depth understanding of who you are designing for will be make-or-break when developing an intuitive product. You want it to be intuitive for the core user, after all.
What’s more, an individual who has used a similar app or website in the past is likely to recognize certain design elements; these elements will implicitly convey actions to be taken and how to get jobs done. That’s why when websites and apps undergo dramatic redesigns, users can be left a little perplexed as to how to use them!
Research by Google shows that users form opinions on website design quickly. Extremely quickly: within 50 milliseconds.
Whatever product you’re creating, it has to deliver a familiar, simple experience for the target user. A lack of intuitive functionality can be crippling. Users must be able to interact with a product comfortably and easily.
A non-intuitive design drops users into an unfamiliar situation with no obvious solution. Customers shouldn’t have to work to figure a product out, it should all be ready to use from the start. If they struggle too much, they may jump ship: usability is a key reason for app abandonment.