Insights, tools and research to advance journalism

How a website’s interactivity can make it more persuasive

Penn State

A study from Penn State shows that a message conveyed on a website may be more persuasive if the website is interactive. Participants in the study who were shown an interactive anti-smoking website were more likely to say smoking was an unattractive behavior and agree with the site’s stance against smoking than participants who were shown a website that wasn’t interactive. Researcher Jeeyun Oh says: “When interface features are perceived as natural, easy to use and intuitive, users will feel more focused and have more fun during browsing … Our study shows that this positive perception and experience of an interface can translate into more positive attitudes toward the message itself.” This would suggest that design and interaction also affect how news audiences absorb journalism.

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