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Branding Wont Fix Crappy Content - SharePoint User Experience Discussion
 

Branding Wont Fix Crappy Content - SharePoint User Experience Discussion

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Branding alone cannot support the user experience in SharePoint. The successful redesign of an existing SharePoint site is dependent on multiple factors that are often overlooked. ...

Branding alone cannot support the user experience in SharePoint. The successful redesign of an existing SharePoint site is dependent on multiple factors that are often overlooked.

This session is designed for Architects, Designers, and IT Pros and includes the following:

-Common Causes of Branding Problems in SharePoint
-Demonstration of "crappy content" and impact on branding
Overview of the elements of User Experience (UX)
-Methods to improve user experience and overall look and feel without touching a master page

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  • About Marcy KellarBranding & Design Lead at CDW responsible for web content management, branding and usabilityDiverse background in life sciences, psychology, data management and technologyOver four years experience in SharePoint architecture planning and implementationOver twenty years experience in fine art and visual design
  • Where Does My Passion For SharePoint Come From?I am an impulsive website user. That means that I fall victim to bad design just like everyone else. I get frustrated with poorly constructed sites. I just want to get my job done without having to be a sophisticated user. I started studying best practices of web design, information architecture, information mapping and usability in 2004.SharePoint Is My Hero – I worked in a job that had multiple redundant data.
  • What You Will LearnWhat I Mean by “Branding won’t fix crappy content”User experience (UX) elements & SharePointExamples of “Crappy Content” and FixesBest Practices that prevent “crappy content” and ultimately improve user experience - How is this relevant to you?Almost every level of sharepoint user can benefit from understanding how the look and feel of sharepoint isn’t just about the color and logo. There’s a lot of structure and design that that branding sits on.
  • Crappy Content is my nemesisCrappy Content can make a good branding project fail. It’s my archenemy and I lookout for it all the time.
  • So you are probably What’s this have to do with branding?
  • Branding Is Just the Tip of the Iceberg
  • What Lurks in The Deep For SharePoint Branders tasked with more objectives than changing the logo and colors. Here are a few items that can inhibit the user experienceNavigationEmbedded StylingLayoutNomenclatureSite DefinitionsContent ThypesArchitecturePoliticsWeb PartsSearch Scopes
  • Common Causes of Branding Problems in SharePointThere are many causes of branding frustrations in SharePoint. Many of them can be avoided by being proactive. Make sure that you take time with the client/stakeholder prior to creating your branding strategy. This will ensure that you truly understand the goals of the branding effort. Guide the client to make the right decisions.
  • Branding Request Examples The Requests Seem Simple“Brand the site to get users excited about using SharePoint”“We are only using publishing templates for our intranet”“Take this home page design and apply it to the new intranet. “Brand the site to get users excited about using SharePoint”“No, we don’t have any customizations or embedded styling”“Brand the site to get users excited about using SharePoint”Each one of these examples has a risk hidden below the innocent request.
  • Problem: Content is an afterthoughtWhy this is a problem:Content is required for functional testsContent impacts design – better designs can be created with real contentWhat you can do:No LoremIpsum – Use real content in mockupBe prepared for examples of mocked up design vs functional tested designsMake sure client understands riskCreate your own test environment with various content scenarios. Keep adding to it with every project
  • Problem: Home Page Is MasterWhy this is a problem:Home Page does not address all areas of SharePointLots of undiscovered design decisionsWhat you can do:Walk through areas not addressed in home page (i.e. left nav, interior page structure)Document any requirements not covered in the mockup/prototype
  • Problem: The Priority of “Dazzle”Why this is a problem:Lots of undiscovered design decisionsContent often drives visual design requirements.What you can do:Walk through inspirational & competitor sitesReview how they are using contentBe prepared with examples of sites that workBe prepared with examples of content conundrums
  • Problem: Current State UndefinedProblem: Client doesn’t realize that intranet uses both publishing and collaboration. Why this is a problem:Not all site templates handle branding the sameMeeting & Document Workspaces – Master PagePublishing vs Collaboration - Alternate CSSClient doesn’t really know what’s in their siteWhat you can do:Make sure that your scope is on target by getting an accurate report of site templates being usedCreate a site map using VisioGenerate site report by using SharePoint Spider
  • Problem: Embedded StylesWhy this is a problem:CSS called from page is last to render. Overrides your stylesHard-coded table widthsTest/bugfix hours used to confirm embedded stylesWhat you can do:Task client with reviewing content for stylesProactively include Overrides embedded MS Word StylesUse SharePoint Spider tool to look for customizations
  • Problem: Cluttered ContentWhy this is a problem: Content is cluttered and hard to scanWhat you can do:Show client the value of CQWP and reusable contentStyle web parts and page layouts
  • Problem: Branding as a FixWhy this is a problem:Branding won’t fix a site’s credibility, search, usability, etcWhat you can do:Review project objectivesUnderstand site goalsSet realistic expectationsBecome a user advocateEducate yourself on elements of user experience
  • SharePoint SpiderScript created by Tom Dietz, Sr. SharePoint Architect Reports information that impacts brandingFormat: portable format (csv)Scope: Web AppMy Requirements:Returned data in a portable format (csv or excel)Scope: Web AppReports per site collection:Site URL - The fully qualified URL to the siteSite Template - The SharePoint Site Template Name the site was created fromHasPublishing- Is the Publishing Feature activated on this siteCustom Home Page - Has the home page been customizedCustom Item Style - Has the /Style Library/XSL Style Sheets/ItemStyle.xsl file been customized (Applicable only to Publishing sites)Site Master Page - URL of site master pageSystem Master PageTheme
  • http://sharepointuserexperience.com/downloads/SharePoint_Spider_1.5.zip
  • http://www.sharepointuserexperience.com/downloads/SharePoint_Spider_1.5.zip
  • Know your landscapeSite TemplatesSite CollectionsOther designsSite Definitions
  • Limit CustomizationsCustomizations such as 3rd party web parts should be managed closely if you care about a uniform and consistent look and feel. Beware of inline widths that users like to assign to tables. Train them to use % or lock down the RTE in the page layoutUntested featuresTesting brandingHard-coded widthsTrain content authors
  • Problem: The Priority of “Dazzle”Why this is a problem:Lots of undiscovered design decisionsWhat you can do:Understand business drivers and site objectives. Document them. Make sure site continues.Walk through areas not addressed in home page (i.e. left nav, interior page structure)Document any requirements not covered in the mockup/prototype
  • Problem: The Priority of “Dazzle”Why this is a problem:Lots of undiscovered design decisionsWhat you can do:Understand business drivers and site objectives. Document them. Make sure site continues.Walk through areas not addressed in home page (i.e. left nav, interior page structure)Document any requirements not covered in the mockup/prototype
  • Problem: Current State UndefinedWhy this is a problem:Current state of site is undefinedWhat you can do:Create a site map using VisioGenerate site report by using SharePoint Spider
  • Problem: Cluttered ContentWhy this is a problem: Content is cluttered and hard to scanWhat you can do:Show client the value of CQWP and reusable contentStyle web parts and page layouts
  • Know your landscapeDemo ofthe SharePoint spider
  • Limit CustomizationsCustomizations such as 3rd party web parts should be managed closely if you care about a uniform and consistent look and feel. Beware of inline widths that users like to assign to tables. Train them to use % or lock down the RTE in the page layout
  • Plan Your Site TaxonomyMake sure that it is scalable and flexible.
  • Improve Content Structure
  • Know your landscapeDemo ofthe SharePoint spider
  • Limit CustomizationsCustomizations such as 3rd party web parts should be managed closely if you care about a uniform and consistent look and feel. Beware of inline widths that users like to assign to tables. Train them to use % or lock down the RTE in the page layout
  • Plan Your Site TaxonomyMake sure that it is scalable and flexible.
  • Improve Content Structure

Branding Wont Fix Crappy Content - SharePoint User Experience Discussion Branding Wont Fix Crappy Content - SharePoint User Experience Discussion Presentation Transcript

  • Branding And User Experience Discussion December 5, 2009 Prepared for SharePoint Saturday DC by Marcy Kellar
  • Branding Lead at CDW responsible for branding, web content management, and usability Diverse background in life sciences, psychology, data management and technology Over four years experience in SharePoint architecture design, branding & implementation Marcy Kellar Over twenty years experience in fine art and visual design
  • Crappy content What Is It? What does that mean to you? Examples of branding issues that lead to “crappy content” The User experience (UX) elements Mapping UX elements back to SharePoint
  • Photo by marcykellar, flickr
  • SharePoint Branding We’ll Call This “Content”
  • What is asked for What Keeps Me Up At Night
  • “Brand the site to get users “Take this home page excited about using design and apply it to the SharePoint” new intranet. “We are pretty sure that we “Make the site really are only using publishing pop now and we’ll templates for our intranet” figure out the content later” “No, we don’t have any customizations or embedded styling”
  • Why this is a problem:  Content is required for functional tests  Impacts information design Let’s work out a schedule “Make the site really pop for functional testing with now and we’ll figure out the real content. content later” What you can do:  No Lorem Ipsum – Use real content in mockup  Show examples  Help client understand risk  Document risk  Build a bounds test environment
  • Why this is a problem:  Home Page does not address all areas of SharePoint  Undiscovered design decisions Let’s walk through a SharePoint site and “Take this home page discuss how your design design and apply it to the in areas besides the new intranet. home page. What you can do: • Walk through areas not covered • Document visual requirements
  • Why this is a problem:  Users come to site for content, not dazzle.  Content often drives visual design requirements. “Brand the site to get users excited about using I need a better SharePoint” understanding of the business requirements driving your redesign What you can do:  Walk through inspirational & competitor sites  Understand project goals  Be prepared with examples of sites that work  Be prepared with examples of content conundrums
  • Why this is a problem:  Branding won’t fix a site’s credibility, search, usability, etc “Brand the site to get Let’s review all of the areas users excited about using that seem to be impacting SharePoint” user adoption and see what we can fix with visual design. What you can do:  Review project objectives  Understand site goals  Set realistic expectations  Become a user advocate  Educate yourself on elements of user experience
  • Why this is a problem:  Overrides custom branding  Hard-coded table widths  Misuse of Test/bugfix hours “No, we don’t have SharePoint will actually tell us any customizations or everything we will get a report embedded styling” of any customizations. generated by this cool tool, SharePoint Spider. What you can do:  Task client with reviewing content  Proactively include MS Word overrides  Use SharePoint Spider tool to ID customized pages
  • Why this is a problem:  Current state of site is undefined or unclear  Not all site templates handle branding the same “We are pretty sure Let’s get an accurate picture that we are only using of your environment’s publishing templates landscape with the report for our intranet” generated by this cool tool, SharePoint Spider. What you can do:  Generate a site map using Visio  Generate site report by using SharePoint Spider
  • • Created by: Tom Dietz, Sr. SharePoint Architect • Reports: information that impacts branding • Format: portable format (csv) • Scope: Web App DOWNLOAD SPIDER
  • 1. Download Spider 2. Unzip contents to c directory 3. Review readme.txt for more info 4. Open command prompt 5. c: spider http://yoursitename.com >yourdesiredfilename.csv
  • To SharePoint Branding Success
  •  Site Templates  Site Collections  Other designs  Site Definitions Photo by monicAl, flickr
  •  Untested features  Testing branding  Hard-coded widths  Train content authors Photo Courtesy of Tarja_, flickr
  •  First, Content  Organize content into taxonomies and hierarchies  Design Navigation
  •  Clear visual hierarchy  Rule of Thirds  Design Elements and Principles  Gestalt Principles Photo by Liz Bartlett, flickr
  • Proximity Similarity Continuity Closure Common Fate Symmetry
  • • Follow Web Conventions • Site Actions Menu Photo Courtesy of Mike Owens, flickr
  • Users spend most of their time on other sites Jakob's Law of the Web User Experience
  • Eye Tracking Studies
  • Photo Courtesy of noamgaala, flickr
  • User Experience (UX) is the quality of experience a person has when interacting with a specific design. ~www.uxnet.org
  • Become a user advocate
  • “Over the last year online banking has attracted 6.3 million users, but a massive 3.1 million of those have closed their accounts already due to poor website design and inefficient service. ” (Internet Money Issue 4) “World-wide productivity loss due to bad intranet usability is about one trillion dollars per year.” (Coyne et al) “The cost to business of poor user experience and satisfaction is equivalent to $40,000 per person in lost business each year, based on one hour a day being spent sorting out software usability problems (Marketing Opinion Research International/MORI)”
  • Jesse James Garrett, 2000
  • UXNet Podcast UIE Slimwiki Adaptive Path Podcast Boxes and Arrows
  • Doing a Content Inventory (Or, a Mind-Numbingly Detailed Odyssey Through Your Web Site)” “The Content Inventory Is Your Friend” Eye-tracking studies by the Poynter Institute Eye-tracking studies by Jakob Nielsen Where users expect to find standard web page components Introduction to Good Usability – Downloadable ebook Elements of User Experience
  • Resources and epiphanies in 140 characters or less. http://thesharepointmuse.com