I have always liked writing, but I never got the chance to learn anything besides content writing and copywriting. In February 2022, I got accepted into a 6-month internship as a UX writer and my mentor has been highly supportive to help me learn UX writing on my feet. These UX writing daily challenges are my first few tasks upon accepting the internship.
Note that UX designing is not my forte, but I tried my best to make it as close as how I picture it to be. I designed the whole thing on Figma.
UX Writing Challenge #1
Scenario: a traveler is in an airport waiting for the last leg of a flight home when their flight gets abruptly canceled due to bad weather.
Challenge: write a message from the airline app notifying them of the cancellation and what they need to do next.
Headline: 45 characters; body: 175 characters max; buttons: 25 characters max
First, I assessed the problem (flight cancellation) and how it affected the users (users cannot fly at their preferred time). Next, I crafted the copy while empathizing with the users.
However, when delivering unpleasant news, I tried to not be overly sympathetic because it will cloud the message. I decided to deliver the news concisely, but of course, it is still important to write humanely as if we understand the users’ position. Hence, I started with an apology for their situation.
I read a UX writing article once from Guy Ligertwood that highly contributed to my thought process. To make my copy useful, I provided two CTA buttons so users will have options to fix their situation. Especially in a situation like this, where users are frustrated because their plans do not go well. The two CTA buttons came from the most logical to-do lists that are related to flight cancellation.
UX Writing Challenge #2
Scenario: the user entered the wrong email address to sign in to their account.
Challenge: tell the user to enter the right email address.
40 characters max
This is a rather common error notification, but I think that is just what makes this message more challenging. I often take messages like this for granted without actually paying attention to each word of it.
Now, the problem is that the user entered the wrong email address. Since there is not any brand voice or guidelines to follow, I decided to go with a standardized one. Eventually, I went with “Wrong email address. Please try again.”
I decided so because I only felt the need to address the issue and guide users on what they should do to fix it. I also tried to not write expressions such as “Oops!” or “Uh-oh!” because such expressions often come along with certain brand voices or tones, hence I decided to go with a “standard” one.
I also placed the error notification just below the email address, just to make it clear that the problem is within the email address, not the password or any place else.
UX Writing Challenge #3
Scenario: it’s Monday. A user has just gotten into their car to drive to work. They plug their phone into the car and start driving.
Challenge: How would you let the user know there’s a fire happening in a nearby town that is causing road closures? The effect on their commute is unknown, but there is a definite danger if the fire gets closer. How do you communicate this to them? When? Write it.
Headline: 30 characters; body: 45 characters max
Going to work on the first day of the week can be stressful, especially when they have to take another (possibly longer) routes to their work. This is a quite challenging problem to solve.
Since this is a dangerous matter, I decided to notify the user concisely and make the whole copy compact because they are driving and they need to grasp the whole information in a split second without diverting their attention from the roads for too long. Hence, I tried to make it scannable.
I also made another version with a CTA button on it, because I imagined that in such a stressful situation, the user would want to know another route that will not endanger themselves.
UX Writing Challenge #4
Scenario: An elderly user is doing a Google search to find an easy way to buy contact lenses online.
Challenge: Write a title and meta description for a website that sells subscription contact lenses delivered to a user every 30 days-convince them to try it.
Title: 60 characters max; meta description: 160 characters max
To be honest, I had some difficulties because I never met an elderly using a search engine in my surroundings. Thus, to have a fundamental idea about how I should approach this, I did some content research.
Unlike the later generations who can stare at the screen for quite a time, senior citizens cannot do so for it will damage their sight. So, I decided to make the title and description as simple as possible. I started with an action word (buy/beli in Indonesian) and proceed with the products offered right away (contact lenses/lensa kontak in Indonesian).
To convince them to buy it, I decided to give discounts for their first purchase so they would, at least, know what the qualities are like. I also tried to fit the benefits of buying the contact lenses in the title, which is having their purchase delivered to their front door so they will not have to worry about the hassle of online shopping.
I will try to do the rest of the challenges soon, but I am looking forward to hearing your feedback on the 4 prompts I have done so far.
Thank you for reading!