Sunday, June 19, 2005

Usability Testing Highlights

  • You have to clarify: we are here to test the solution interface not the user and here you have to encourage the user to talk aloud as much as possible
  • You usually want to answer questions like these..
    - Do users complete a task successfully?
    - If so, how fast do they do each task?
    - Is that fast enough to satisfy them?
    - What paths do they take in trying?
    - Do those paths seem efficient enough to them?
    - Where do they stumble? What problems do they have? Where do they get confused?
    - What words or paths are they looking for that are not now on the site?
  • Types of Questions to Ask..
    - Do users realize, without being told, whose site they are working with just from looking at the home page?
    - Do users click through pages or do they use search?
    - What words do they try in search?
    - What do they choose from the search results?
    - How do they react to the download time for specific pages?
    - If they abandon a shopping cart before buying, when do they stop and why?
  • Iterative Testing Works Best: Usability testing is an iterative process that involves testing the site and then using the test results to change the site to better meet users' needs. The best process is to try out a prototype with a few users, fix it, and test it again.

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