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  • 1. Usability Engineering
  • 2.
    • What to expect...
    • Who is Jakob Nielsen?
    • What is usability?
    • Nielsen’s contributions to usability
    • Further information on usability
    • Common usability problems
    • Why bother with usability?
  • 3.
    • What to expect...
    • Consequences of ignoring usability
    • Usability Testing
    • Usability Management
    • Usability and You
    • The Future of Usability
  • 4.  
  • 5.  
  • 6.
    • Biography
    Occupation: Web Usability Consultant Born 1957, Copenhagen Denmark Holds PhD in Human-Computer Interaction
  • 7.
    • Biography
    - Affiliated with Sun Microsystems (1994-1998) - Leading player in development of web usability - Co-founder of usability consulting company Nielsen Norman Group - Author of “Usability Engineering”
  • 8.
    • What is it?
    Usability is all about designing an easy to use website that appeals to as many people as possible. Websites should be intuitively usable . Many aren’t.
  • 9.
    • What is it?
    If people cannot easily find what they are looking for on your site, they will simply leave and visit one of your competitors.
  • 10.
    • What is it?
    Most websites have good and bad points – some by accident, and others by design. You need to understand where the problem areas are on your site, and fix them.
  • 11.
    • What is it?
    Usability allows you to take control of the user experience on your website. The upside can be massive. Remember that a website will not optimise itself.
  • 12.
    • Usability Discount Engineering
    Discount Usability Engineering is a basically a group of smaller, cheaper usability studies for projects with small budgets for usability.
  • 13.
    • Usability Discount Engineering
    The primary characteristics of discount usability engineering are small sample sizes, frequent repetition of these small tests, and reliance on direct observations rather than on statistically established findings.
  • 14.
    • Usability Discount Engineering
    This is best suited to projects that have access to an in-house staff of usability specialists.
  • 15.
    • Usability Discount Engineering
    A prerequisite for discount usability engineering is the capability to quickly incorporate the results of each small study into a prototype which will be tested again and again.
  • 16.
    • Nielsen’s Law
    - A high-end user's connection speed grows by 50% per year - Neilsen tracked his internet bandwidth speed from 1984 to 2008
  • 17.
    • Nielsen’s Law
    - Most people are low-end users who are 2-3 years behind the technology, they prefer to pay less and work with a lower connection
  • 18.
    • Nielsen’s Law
    - Web design needs to cater to the lower-end user, not the 10% of internet users who are considered high-end
  • 19.
    • Nielsen’s Law
    - International web users need to be considered as all, as their connection speeds are typically behind North America.
  • 20.
    • Usability Goals
    Learnability How intuitive is the design of the site?
  • 21.
    • Usability Goals
    Efficiency How quickly can users perform tasks, find products etc?
  • 22.
    • Usability Goals
    Memorability Can users easily remember how to use the website?
  • 23.
    • Usability Goals
    Errors What kind of errors are users making? Why are they making them? Can they easily recover from these mistakes?
  • 24.
    • Usability Goals
    Satisfaction Do your customers enjoy using your website?
  • 25.
    • Further information
    According to Nielsen, the user experience and overall usability does not belong to a CEO, the head of marketing, or a web designer with a cool haircut who wants to sex-up the navigation.
  • 26.
    • Further information
    The views of the users are the only things that count when it comes to website usability and the user experience is all theirs. If they don’t like it, they will leave. The prospective customer is always right.
  • 27.
    • Further information
    Nielsen says to be wary of listening to people who are too close to your website.
  • 28.
    • Further information
    Instead, watch and measure user behaviour to make logical, objective conclusions about your site.
  • 29.
    • Further information
    You can then get users to tell you where the problem areas lie and not your design agency or the stakeholders in your business or project.
  • 30.
    • Common Problem Areas
    - Navigation - Search/filtering options - Loading speed - Checkouts
  • 31.
    • Common Problem Areas
    - Product pages - Copywriting - Colours - Accessibility
  • 32.
    • Why bother with it?
    Usability can boost your overall business performance.
  • 33.
    • Why bother with it?
    Increased sales Improved conversion rates Improved perception of your brand Decreased customer dissatisfaction
  • 34.
    • Why bother with it?
    Greater reach Improved search rankings Decreased development costs Reduced customer support costs
  • 35.
    • Consquences of ignoring it
    If you own an online store and make a mess of your user experience, then shoppers will become frustrated and check out other competition.
  • 36.
    • Consquences of ignoring it
    It is highly likely that other websites will be investing in usability, which means your website will become worse to the user, simply by standing still. Those shoppers won’t have any reason to return to your website if this is the case.
  • 37.
    • Consquences of ignoring it
    Usability is something you cannot afford to ignore. Users who experience usability problems on your website can be unforgiving, and site problems can have a negative effect on whether or not the user will return to the site.
  • 38.
    • Consquences of ignoring it
    A recent survey of U.S. consumers by Harris Interactive found that almost nine out of ten respondents have experienced problems when making a transaction online.
  • 39.
    • Consquences of ignoring it
    • The same study was carried out in the UK, with similar findings:

      • 37% of visitors who have experienced problems conducting online transactions would abandon the transaction after experiencing problems. 

      • 20% of those conducting online transactions felt that the ease of completing a transaction was the most important factor in a positive customer experience.
  • 40.
    • GET READY... Is this website actually usable? Which of the usability goals does it follow/not follow?
  • 41.
    • The 6 benefits, and results you can expect
    Spending money on usability testing will result in the following: Improved perceptions of brand Increased conversion rates Greater customer loyalty and retention Increased customer advocacy Increased traffic Improved search rankings
  • 42.
    • Who controls it?
    Responsibility for user experience within organizations is quite varied. It tends to be owned by departments with an interest in marketing and customer experience.
  • 43.
    • Who controls it?
    Once a business grows to a certain size it may prove wise to outsource usability to a dedicated agency, unless there are enough resources in-house to manage usability-led website improvements. 
  • 44.
    • Who controls it?
    According to E-consultancy's Usability and User Experience Report 2007, 43% of organizations deal with user experience issues exclusively in-house, while 28% hire third party assistance for their user experience teams.
  • 45.
    • Who controls it?
    It was also found that 5% of respondents said that no-one is really responsible for online user experiences but the user themselves.
  • 46.
    • Who controls it?
    Just over half of the organizations surveyed use an agency or specialist usability company to help them improve the user experience. 
  • 47.
    • Who controls it?
    So, not only is usability a really important thing for website developers to keep in mind, its also an industry in itself.
  • 48.
    • Applying usability to your own work
    If you’re new to usability and aren’t sure what to measure, then start by looking at the following five areas where the user experience matters most: Navigation Checkout abandonment Unclear link text Registration/logins Slow pageload times
  • 49.
    • What is in store for usability?
    Usability needs to be a priority for PDAs, Blackberry devices, cell phones, and so on. Few websites are optimized for viewing on a smaller screen.
  • 50.
    • What is in store for usability?
    Input devices will focus on gesture recognition and computers will use video cameras to observe the user.
  • 51.
    • What is in store for usability?
    Usability needs to work towards simplified commands that will result in a better set of choices for the user to pick from. Google leads the way.
  • 52. FIN.