Image created with Midjourney. Image prompt:
Image created with Midjourney. Image prompt: A minimalist 2D figure is surrounded by speech bubbles, each containing the same icon but with different colors, sizes, and orientations, signifying different ways of conveying the same message.

In digital product design, how information is presented, or 'framed,' plays a crucial role in how it is perceived and understood by users. Framing is a communication technique where the same content is interpreted differently based on how it's presented. Just as "the tone makes the music," the way we frame information significantly influences user interactions and experiences1.

Understanding Framing

The concept of Framing refers to the presentation of the same information in different ways, leading to varied interpretations. The framing effect is a cognitive bias where people react differently to the same information depending on how it's presented. This phenomenon demonstrates that 'how' something is communicated often matters more than 'what' is communicated1.

Framing in Digital Software Products

The impact of framing is seen in various aspects of digital product design. Let's explore this through three examples:

User Notifications

How a notification is framed can significantly impact user response. For instance, an app might frame a low battery notification as "Battery Saver mode recommended" instead of "Low battery," encouraging positive action instead of causing concern.

User Onboarding

During user onboarding, framing plays a crucial role in user experience. The same instructions can be framed in a fun, engaging manner instead of a dry, factual one, leading to a more positive user experience.

Error Messages

Error messages are another area where framing matters. Instead of stating "Error occurred," a message framed as "Something went wrong, but we're on it!" can reassure users and lead to a better user experience.


Framing is a powerful tool in digital product design. By understanding and applying this concept, designers can greatly influence how users perceive and interact with their products. This understanding helps craft a more compelling and user-friendly experience, ultimately enhancing the overall product design1.

Weniger, was man sagt, ist wichtig, als wie man es sagt. Wir reagieren unterschiedlich auf denselben Inhalt, je nachdem wie er kommuniziert wird. „Der Ton macht die Musik“.