Improved Usability At Improved Usability, we are dedicated to helping you delight your customers whether your company sells services or products. We able to help you better understand your customers needs and how best to position your products or services in their current workflow or lifestyle. We also conduct usability testing for Usability testing is typically conducted in one-on-one sessions. current and new products or websites.ImprovedUsability.com
What is User Experience? User Experience (UX) is a holistic consideration of users’ desired experience and is a critical component in the design of products, services and environments. The Key Benefits of UX are: Obtaining deep insight into user needs and wants Learning how users will use a particular product or service Collecting information that drives an end-user focused approach to design, business decisions and technical decisions. User experience design team members come from a variety of backgrounds in human-computer interaction (HCI), human factors, cognitive psychology, library sciences and design. Usability can be defined as the ease of use and learnability of a human- made object (be it a website, book, software, etc.).ImprovedUsability.com
User Experience > design process Discovery User research is conducted to help define who are the users of a system, site, application, etc. In addition, efforts are made to determine unmet needs, current workflow, and where the Internet could assist. Concept Ideation Initial concepts are created and vetted with users in a rapid iterative design cycle. Involvement from both technical and client teams is crucial to ensure that the early designs follow business requirements and can eventually be implemented. Design Based on the learnings from Discovery and Concept Ideation, design work continues with the eventual goal of having a set of high fidelity screens that have been vetted by the eventual users of the system or application.ImprovedUsability.com
User Experience > design processImprovedUsability.com
User Experience > activities Type Description Time ~ Effort Mental Models In order to build out the mental model diagram, contextual inquiry ~ 4 weeks Medium interviews are needed along with survey and or diary studies. Persona Development Personas represent the primary user group(s) of a site or application. ~ 5-6 High They are an archetype representing a user group (audience segment) weeks synthesized from research. Focus Groups Working with small groups of users, a usability analyst seeks to elicit ~ 4 weeks Medium requirements and determine the priority of those requirements. RITE Testing is a usability method similar to traditional usability testing; ~ 4 weeks Medium however RITE differs in that the data are analyzed after each participant, or at the end of each day of testing, changes to the interface are made as soon as an issue is identified and a solution is clear, and the changed interface is tested with the remaining users Card Sorting 1 on 1 activity conducted with customers to determine their natural mental ~ 4 weeks Medium model when approaching a website. Heuristic Review Expert evaluation to determine if aspects of an interface or website follow ~ few days Low established usability principals. to 2 weeks Validation User Testing Validation studies are typically conducted with high fidelity prototypes ~4-5 High (e.g. Flash or close to production code) to confirm design decisions made weeks by the project team. Quick Feedback User With a panel, a small set of users (6-12) are recruited to be available to ~ 1-2 Low Panel provide quick feedback on a set of designs or screens. Email is a weeks common route to obtain this feedback.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > persona development Description Personas are models that describe the user’s: goals, needs, and characteristics. They represent the primary user group(s) of a site or application. They are an archetype representing a user group (audience segment) synthesized from research When to Use Early on in a project (redesign or new application/site) to help the Agile team focus its development efforts. Typical Project Length/Effort 5-6 weeks/High Deliverables Persona posters and a PowerPoint report summarizing major findings.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > focus groups Description Working with small groups of users, a usability analyst seeks to elicit requirements and determine the priority of those requirements. Often times, a priming activity or homework assignment can be given to users ahead of time to help make the most of the time spent in the session. In addition, feedback can be gained on proposed concepts or designs. When to Use Early on (before requirements have been settled on) when there is a need to frame what will be delivered/produced. Typical Project Length/Effort 4 weeks/Medium Deliverables PowerPoint report summarizing findings and video highlight reel. .ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > rapid iterative testing Description Rapid Iterative Testing and Evaluation, typically referred to as "RITE" testing is a usability method similar to traditional usability testing; however RITE differs in that the data are analyzed after each participant, or at the end of each day of testing, changes to the interface are made as soon as an issue is identified and a solution is clear, and the changed interface is tested with the remaining users. Changes are easily made to the prototype since it is typically in a low-fidelity format. When to Use Early on in the project (before Day 0) when requirements are still rough and being firmed up. Typical Project Length/Effort 4-5weeks/High Deliverables PowerPoint report summarizing findings and video highlight reel.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > card sorting Description Card sorting is a user-centered design method for developing organization and navigation of a site or application. The process involves sorting a series of cards, each labeled with a piece of content or functionality, into groups that make sense to users or participants. Card sorting is a great, reliable, inexpensive method for finding patterns in how users would expect to find content or functionality. Those patterns are often referred to as the users’ mental model. By understanding the users’ mental model, we can increase findability, which in turn makes the product easier to use. When to Use Early on in the project (before Day 0) when requirements are still rough and being firmed up. Typical Project Length/Effort 4-5weeks/High Deliverables PowerPoint report summarizing findings and video highlight reel.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > expert review Description A heuristic or expert review is conducted by a usability analyst reviewing a particular design or set of designs. The design is compared against a set of standard best practice principles and recommendations are made for improvement. When to Use Any time the project team determines it needs quick feedback on a set of designs. Heuristic reviews are best employed prior to a usability study to help set priorities of items to be reviewed with participants. Typical Project Length/Effort 1-4 weeks/Low to Medium Deliverables Word document with issues called out and screenshots of designs.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > validation usability testing Description Usability test evaluations assess the extent to which an application or its features meet the users’ objectives. At the conclusion of the formal evaluation, the usability analysts will create a final report. Validation studies are typically conducted with high fidelity prototypes (e.g. Flash or close to production code) to confirm design decisions made by the project team. When to Use Later in the design cycle (ideally after RITE sessions have been completed). Since validation sessions typically last ~90 minutes, these types of studies need to be placed strategically to provide the greatest value to the project team. Typical Project Length/Effort 4-5weeks/High Deliverables PowerPoint report summarizing findings and video highlight reel.ImprovedUsability.com
User Research > ux vs. usability User experience (UX) speaks to the overall experience that a person has when he or she interacts with a product or service. Encompasses both interaction design and visual design and seeks to promote an interface that is pleasing to the user. Usability is focused on the ease in which people can use a particular tool or human-made object to achieve a particular goal. Usability is fundamentally qualitative but may involve the application of quantitative data to identify areas of weakness and suggest improvements. The study of usability often focuses on performing extensive tests with large groups of individuals, sometimes involving in depth techniques like eye tracking to determine how users interact with interfaces and any areas in which they get lost.ImprovedUsability.com
A particular slide catching your eye?
Clipping is a handy way to collect important slides you want to go back to later.