Posts Tagged ‘Usability’

We are pleased to present below all posts tagged with ‘Usability’.

Getting Started With E-Commerce: Your Options When Selling Online

The world of online sales, whether of products or services, can be daunting at first; the options seem confusing and the information conflicted. Yet as the designer or developer of an online store, you will need to guide your client through the maze of choices in order to get it up and running.

I have developed many e-commerce websites during my career as a Web developer. I've used and modified off-the-shelf software and have also developed custom solutions — so I know from experience that there are a number of important questions to answer before presenting possible solutions to a client. Getting all the pertinent information up front is vital if such a project is to run smoothly, and it can save you from delays during the process. It can also help you advise the client on whether they need a full custom cart or an open-source or off-the-shelf product.

Screenshot

This article responds to some questions you should be asking of your client before putting together a proposal for the development of an e-commerce website. I'll explain the most important things to think about in terms of taking payments and credit card security. It should give you enough information to be able to guide your client and to look up more detailed information about the aspects that apply to your particular situation.

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The Path To Advertising Nirvana

With advertising, a curious thing happens: most people want its benefits but are rarely willing to put up with its hassles. Those who run websites and applications have enough on their plates without having to worry about handling transactions, putting banners across their website or hearing requests from advertisers. Moreover, users have little to no interest in even looking at advertisements that flank a website's content, some going so far as to block ads before they're delivered. So, what's a website owner to do?

Advertising hasn't always been this way. Some people even enjoy them. Scary thought, I know, but stay with me. You know those previews shown before movies and those signs outside of gas stations announcing fuel prices? Those are rarely seen as advertisements at all. That's because people find them informative, helpful and engaging. Heck, some people say they watch the Superbowl for the advertisements themselves. So why are websites any different? What has changed online that people (apparently) find less acceptable than offline? Not much, really… well, not much unless you count that whole "Internet" thing.

As a general rule, when people surf the Web, they're in control of the experience. If someone wants information about a particular topic, they might query Google or look up an article on Wikipedia. Regardless of what they do, they choose how to obtain the information they want. The traditional advertising model — shout at your audience until it listens (as Groundswell would put it) — is diametrically opposed to this.

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Usability Review of Charity Websites Taking the Lead

Over the years designers have pushed themselves to create unique and inspiring designs. Companies have yearned to have websites which are innovative and make them stand out against their competitors. Yet charity websites have not progressed along with trends and expectations — they seem to have been designed for launch and then only updated with minor tweaks to suit the content.

Red Nose Day website home page

It has become a recent trend for charities to look at their online identities and branding; spending money on creating user experiences which suit their user base, and over time getting people involved with their campaigns and messages.

Below we look at charity websites which have successfully developed their online brand using modern and creative ideas. We will also discuss how each charity website can be improved because, as we all know, not every website is perfect. There are always improvements to the design or usability that may have been overlooked by management, designers, or developers.

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Better User Experience With Storytelling – Part 2

In the first part of this Better User Experience With Storytelling series, we explored some of the basic structures and story patterns found in myths and religions. We saw how these patterns continued into modern stories such as The Matrix and Star Wars. We also explored some of the basics of bringing storytelling into the user experience process and some places to get started.

Disciplines of User Experience

Concluding this two-part article, we hear from creative professionals who are leading the way in this relatively new world of combining the craft of storytelling with user experience. We'll also see how storytelling can be applied to more than just interactive experiences: we find it in everything from packaging to architecture.

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Better User Experience With Storytelling – Part One

Stories have defined our world. They have been with us since the dawn of communication, from cave walls to the tall tales recounted around fires. They have continued to evolve with their purpose remaining the same; To entertain, to share common experiences, to teach, and to pass on traditions.

Today we communicate a bit differently. Our information is fragmented across various mass-media channels and delivered through ever-changing technology. It has become watered down, cloned, and is churned out quickly in 140-character blurbs. We've lost that personal touch where we find an emotional connection that makes us care.

User Experience and Storytelling

Using storytelling, however, we can pull these fragments together into a common thread. We can connect as real people, not just computers. In this article we'll explore how user experience professionals and designers are using storytelling to create compelling experiences that build human connections.

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Usability Study: Shopping For Bedsheets – How Hard Could It Be?

Online shopping is a great way to economize and reduce the stress of shopping, but shopping online for certain types of products can be harder than shopping in person. Recently, I looked at how well major online retailers (Macy's, Target and Overstock.com) facilitate shopping for a deceptively complex, though very common, item: a set of 300-thread-count, white cotton sheets for a queen-sized bed. Here's what I found.

Macy's Screenshot

As with all things Macy's, its website is highly polished and savvy with marketing. The home page is clear and well organized, with categories that are well delineated and prominently displayed. This clarity continues on the "Bed & Bath" landing page, where the "Sheets" option is emphasized, being listed under "Bedding" as well as in the "Featured Categories" on the right. But once they've made their big choices, most shoppers will undoubtedly run into problems.

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25 User Experience Videos That Are Worth Your Time

We're all mostly accustomed to educating ourselves by reading articles. Rare are the opportunities to attend conferences or watch live shows on subjects that we're interested in. That's why we are presenting here phenomenal videos and related resources on the topic of user experience (UX) by different presenters at different events. We have focused on current content but have included some older videos that are still relevant. It will take you more than 16 hours to watch all of these videos. So, make some popcorn, turn off the lights and enjoy.

stateofux

Jesse James Garett, founder of Adaptive Path and author of the book The Elements of User Experience, speaks on what UX and UX design is, what UX looked like before and what are some of the challenges people are encountering now. He cites engagement as the main goal of UX design and, through some fantastic examples, shows that engagement is an universal quality achieved through visuality, sound, touch, smell, taste, body and mind. One of the most impressive moments from the session is when Jesse compares Beethoven to an experience designer, accompanied by the Ninth Symphony.

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