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Meredith and Eilieen presented this at the Minnesota Government IT Symposium, December 17, 2008

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  1. 1. Findability Eileen Quam | Meredith Anderson
  2. 2. What are people looking for? Jobs Help with mortgage foreclosure Education information How do I …
  3. 3. What are people doing? Email Shopping News Weather Health information … Employment search
  4. 4. In Main topics hit in the last month: Education Health Population
  5. 5. What are they finding? Sections of state websites on those topics Some linking to sites outside of Some empty topic categories (eek)
  6. 6. What do we know about citizens? Some people browse and some people search Many people can’t spell or can’t type or both Ask a Librarian shows users don’t know the difference between: federal / state / local government Most Ask a Librarian queries are for help on business and work
  7. 7. Problem: They Need Information What is driving the citizen’s information need now? Task or transaction Information or data Simply a question Where does the citizen want to wind up? Why is the citizen going there? Who is seeking this information? How do we generalize this?
  8. 8. Information architecture to help citizens find stuff Purpose: Organizing information on a web site Designing structure, content, labeling and categories of information Designing navigation and search systems Goal: To organize information that is findable, manageable and usable
  9. 9. Inspiration Look at similar sites for ideas – or not so similar Remember what you are looking for: Appropriate themes Taxonomies that fit Good terminology Navigational ease Design ideas
  10. 10. Citizen-Centered Design It’s the core of findability Tools: Needs assessment studies, card sorts, surveys, response solicitation and usability studies Rate this page responses Analytics like WebTrends data Intuition about other people (Blink) See
  11. 11. Getting ready to design for findability Business case specific to the web site, including its context Categorize/characterize users Inventory your site’s content and tasks Define the tasks that bring users to your site to connect users and content Now we know what, where, why and who - but not how - yet
  12. 12. Designing for Findability To design navigation, get lots of people into a room with post-it notes, or do a card sort Is navigation design based on: Topics User-type Tasks Other group like services or forms? (Remember your users)
  13. 13. Pare it down Simplify, simplify, simplify Too many choices are confusing 3-click rule – debunked!
  14. 14. Design Principles for Findability Be consistent: in concepts, labels, order, and placement on page Keep terms and links short, with keyword first Choose browseable topics that match Subject-oriented User-oriented Task, etc.
  15. 15. Examples Audience orientation Topic orientation Task orientation
  16. 16. More Design Principles Provide multiple approaches to same information Corporate underpants
  17. 17. Know-it-alls We don’t want to go here: “I know exactly who my audience is.” “I know what my audience needs.” “They’re finding everything they need.” “We don’t have time for a needs assessment.”
  18. 18. Designs that don’t work Everyone’s favorite – the bad stuff How can we fix these?
  19. 19. Left-hand Navigation: Apprenticeships Best Picks Edit Account Information Internships Jobs Applied for Online Links to Other Sites [more…]
  20. 20. Left nav continued Resumes Saved Search Search by Job ID Search for Jobs Volunteer Opportunities Who Recruited Me?
  21. 21. Article Health and Fitness Left-hand listing of 71 topics Pretty good A-Z Index of topics Not so easy to navigate Click to Diseases leads to undifferentiated listing of articles on variety of diseases – no organization Organize at all levels, not just home page
  22. 22. Hot trends for success Citizen-centered design Identify and involve all stakeholders Design structure, content, labeling, navigation and categories of information Best sites are clear, concise, and consistent Simplify, simplify, simplify
  23. 23. Accessibility Key for Screen Shots • • Renewable Minnesota • CareerOneStop • MinnesotaWorks • No navigation: • Millions hate the new Facebook profile: gid=27233634858 • Meredith’s Facebook profile • Where do I start? • Bad site from site of bad sites: • Bad site of the day: • Web site of bad sites: