Our new research paper coauthored with Dr Diego Garaialde and Dr Ben Cowan from UCD, identifies the best location to place rewards when using gamification to motivate users. The research paper, which was published in the International Journal of Human-Computer Studies and is available online on Science Direct (sciencedirect.com), highlighted that placing rewards early on in the user interaction was more effective and encouraged users to use the app more.
Gamification has become a common technique for incentivising users to engage with an application however the placement of this tactic and how it impacts on a user is often not considered during the design process. We found that the value a user places on a reward diminishes the further into the future it is and placing rewards early in the interaction sequence leads to an improvement in the perceived value of that reward.
Speaking about the findings Diego Garaialde said: “Rather than rewarding after longer interactions with the app, which is common in current gamified applications, designers should consider rewarding users early for deciding to interact with the app in the first place.”