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User behavior


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User behavior

  1. 1. Website Navigation and Design For eMarketing : Understanding User Behavior Online October 19, 2005
  2. 2. <ul><ul><li>Identify How to Best Serve Your Users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Research Tactics </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Prioritize Your Audience Segments </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding User Behavior Online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where They Look </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What They Expect </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why They Scroll </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Read </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Find Information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Navigate </li></ul></ul></ul>Agenda
  3. 4. Knowing Your Audience: Research Tactics Contextual interviews in users’ workplaces and homes captures information about daily activities, attitudes, and needs Camera studies allow people to interpret their environment and activities when we can’t be there Focus groups solicit opinions and preferences from in-person samples of customers Surveys capture quantitative data about usage and preferences Collaborative design , such as collaging, actively engages customers Card sorting captures customer feedback about categorization and labeling Traditional techniques solicit opinions Interactive techniques observe behaviors
  4. 6. Prioritize Your Audience Segments <ul><ul><li>The choice of which customers to prioritize is a business decision </li></ul></ul>
  5. 7. Focus on the most valuable customers Inflexible Destination Very flexible Destination Inflexible Schedule Very flexible Schedule                        Date Shufflers Date Explorers Destination Seekers Know-it-alls
  6. 8. Retail case study: Let’s go shopping!
  7. 9. Retail Industry Case Study All shoppers are different… in predictable ways The Insight… 1-on-1 interviews and other research revealed patterns in their perceptions, behavior, objectives and tasks The Research and Analysis… <ul><li>How to cater to the various types of shoppers: those who love shopping, those who hate it, those who are good at it, and those who are terrible at it </li></ul>The Problem…
  8. 10. <ul><li>Experienced </li></ul><ul><li>“ I love your hand soap, and I’ve just run out…” </li></ul><ul><li>Likely to be a repeat customer who has been to the site before </li></ul><ul><li>Wants to be able to get right to her product </li></ul><ul><li>Wants the site to remember who they are </li></ul><ul><li>Functional </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’m looking for a gift basket of bath products…” </li></ul><ul><li>Has a need but isn’t sure what will meet it </li></ul><ul><li>Appreciates consultative selling </li></ul><ul><li>Responds well to “solution set” cross-selling/upselling </li></ul><ul><li>Surgical </li></ul><ul><li>“ I want a new blusher…” </li></ul><ul><li>Knows what they want, but unsure if you sell it online </li></ul><ul><li>Wants to find the solution easily and quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Appreciates product comparisons </li></ul><ul><li>Recreational </li></ul><ul><li>“ I work hard— I deserve a treat!” </li></ul><ul><li>Not looking for anything specific </li></ul><ul><li>Receptive to new ideas, expert advice, trend content </li></ul><ul><li>Enthusiastic user of compelling “viral” features </li></ul>There are 4 Different, but Predictable Shopping Modes
  9. 11. There are also Different Levels of Skill “ I do like trying on clothes and experimenting with different styles. I suppose I like trying to create a look that people who know me will see me reflected in the clothes.” (Susan, Rochester) “ I’m not good at mixing and matching, I just don’t know how to do that… I need help with it.” (Colleen, Chicago) Others feel at a loss when it comes to making an outfit that looks good on them and inspires confidence Bad Some people have developed their own personal sense of style and dress confidently Good
  10. 12. And also a Love/Hate Preference for Shopping “ I almost never buy an outfit already pulled together. I love to shop and usually make many trips to put an outfit together. I like trying to find pieces from a variety of source and especially like to find a good bargain!” “ I have always hated shopping. Even when I was financially secure, I hated spending a lot of money on clothes…I would shop out of desperation with no idea what I was looking for…” Others would rather have all their teeth pulled than go shopping. Hate Some people love to shop – they go frequently, trolling for ideas and bargains. Love
  11. 13. Retail Personas = Mode + Skill + Preference Hate Shopping Outfit Confident Love Shopping <ul><li>Eclectic </li></ul><ul><li>Most confident – doesn’t mean they are objectively fashionable, but have own sense of style </li></ul><ul><li>More fluid wardrobe, shop for bits consistently, shop for fun </li></ul><ul><li>Pride of the hunt </li></ul><ul><li>Hapless </li></ul><ul><li>Needs help learning how to put outfits together for different occasions </li></ul><ul><li>Needs help with fit </li></ul><ul><li>Needs ways to get the right thing, quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Shopping can become more enjoyable when the results are better </li></ul>Outfit Challenged <ul><li>Systematic </li></ul><ul><li>Creates mix and match wardrobe to make shopping and dressing easier </li></ul><ul><li>Shops at fewer stores, based on where they have been successful </li></ul><ul><li>Needs help getting out of a rut </li></ul><ul><li>Needs to make shopping fun </li></ul><ul><li>Hopeful </li></ul><ul><li>Needs help learning how to put outfits together for different occasions </li></ul><ul><li>Needs help with fit or problem areas </li></ul><ul><li>Shopping is enjoyable, especially when hunting for “bargains” – good value </li></ul>
  12. 15. <ul><ul><li>Identify How to Best Serve Your Users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Research Tactics </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Prioritize Your Audience Segments </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding User Behavior Online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What They Expect </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where They Look </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why They Scroll </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Read </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Navigate </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How They Find Information </li></ul></ul></ul>Agenda
  13. 17. What They Expect <ul><ul><li>Homepages generally offer the greatest degree of flexibility for layout and content promotion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Depending on the nature of the site and the target audience, users have certain expectations and tolerance for how information is organized </li></ul></ul>
  14. 18. What They Expect <ul><ul><li>Lower level pages typically employ limited and more consistent content layout templates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web pages should be designed to best present information according to the purpose of the site / content, yet… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A large percentage of sites employ a 2 or 3 column layout, where: </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Primary site navigation is located on the left, top or both </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Content is placed in the center </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Secondary or contextually relevant links or content are positioned in the far right column </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Users have been trained to expect these types of content relationships </li></ul></ul></ul>
  15. 20. Where They Look Source - Eyetrack III research <ul><ul><li>On an eye tracking study performed on online news sites, researchers noticed a common pattern amongst participants' eye movements across several news homepage designs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>* This pattern is not true of all sites/designs. Different sites will yield different patterns. </li></ul></ul>A: <ul><ul><li>How effective is my page layout? Are users looking where I want them to look? </li></ul></ul>Q:
  16. 21. Where They Look <ul><li>Habit and design dictate where users go </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Good information architecture and strong visual design are key to leading the user’s eye around the page </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Content positioning and relationships </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Relative weight / volume / size </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use of color, typography, imagery and iconography </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sparing use of animation / movement </li></ul></ul></ul>
  17. 23. Why They Scroll <ul><li>Defining “ the fold ” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The &quot;fold&quot; is an analogous reference to a newspaper folded at its mid-point. On a computer screen, the fold is the point where content is no longer visible without scrolling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most websites, including, are built to be viewed at a minimum display resolution of 800x600 – long held the standard, but is evolving </li></ul></ul>The Fold The Fold The Fold 800 x 600 1280 x 1024 1024 x 768
  18. 24. Why They Scroll <ul><ul><li>Computers are capable of displaying a variety of video resolutions (i.e. a physical number of pixels wide x high) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>About 67% of computers in the US employ a video display resolution greater than 800x600 - this number is increasing daily </li></ul></ul>
  19. 25. Why They Scroll <ul><ul><li>With the adoption of larger display resolutions, the need to scroll diminishes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Users are willing to scroll when they… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t see what they’re looking for on the page, but assume it’s there </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Are compelled by the content and it’s obvious there’s more below “the fold” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They may not scroll if… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The page layout visually suggests, “there’s nothing else below this point (fold)” </li></ul></ul></ul>Microsoft Commerce Server Product Overview
  20. 27. How they read <ul><ul><ul><li>Web usage is typically motivated by the desire to save time </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Users are only interested in a fraction of what’s on the page and know they don’t need to read everything </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Scanning is a behavior common to everyday interaction with newspapers, magazines, and books </li></ul></ul></ul>*Source: Don’t Make Me Think , Alertbox column <ul><ul><li>Users don’t read pages, they scan them </li></ul></ul>
  21. 28. How they read <ul><ul><li>To help users scan, web pages should employ: </li></ul></ul>*Source: Don’t Make Me Think , Alertbox column Use significantly less words than in conventional writing Half the word count Users will skip over additional ideas if they are not caught by the first few words in the paragraph One idea per paragraph Start with the conclusion Inverted pyramid style Lists break content into small, easily digestible points Bulleted lists “ Clever&quot; subtitles don't necessarily help users find information quickly Meaningful sub-headings Hypertext links, typeface variations, and color serve as highlighting Highlighted keywords
  22. 29. How They Read <ul><ul><li>Text size influences how people relate to information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>People tend to skim larger text </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>And read smaller text </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People are less likely to read a descriptor blurbs when: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>There is a large size difference between headline and blurb </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Headline is underlined (visual separation ) </li></ul></ul></ul>*Source: Eyetrack III
  23. 31. How They Navigate <ul><li>Users tend to prefer fewer clicks: a broader, shallower site architecture is a good starting point. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More choices means… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Better exposure to breadth of site or section </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Better chance of recognizing desired keyword </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Less chance of choosing the wrong one </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The myth of “7 +/- 2” - Recognition vs. recall </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fewer levels means… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Less complex navigation system </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Faster site (user perception) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Faster navigation back up the hierarchy </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ The 3-click rule” serves as a good guideline but isn’t mandatory </li></ul></ul></ul>*Source: Usability News
  24. 32. How They Navigate <ul><ul><li>People frequently rely on the Back button </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People expect links to take them somewhere, and buttons to perform an action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Learn More > </li></ul></ul></ul>
  25. 33. How They Navigate Search vs. Browse? Which method a user employs is influenced by the following: <ul><ul><li>How well the site is designed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Good information and visual design provides cues and “information scents” that guide users to the content they’re interested in </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How big or complex the site appears </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sites with many content categories or appear very deep may overwhelm user’s ability to “know” or evaluate where information might reside </li></ul></ul></ul>
  26. 34. How They Navigate <ul><ul><li>Certain information tends to be more searchable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information which is discrete, known, or with standardized attributes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Books: title, author, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>CDs: album title, song, artist </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Certain tasks tend to encourage searching </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Seeking specific item or piece of information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Looking for any answer (fast) vs. the best answer (thorough) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  27. 36. How They Find Information <ul><ul><li>Users don’t figure out how things work, they muddle through </li></ul></ul>*Source: Don’t Make Me Think <ul><ul><li>Most users don’t care about the nuances or intricacies of a system, product, or application as long as it’s usable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When users find something that works, they stick to it even if it’s inefficient </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Users tend not to look for a better way, but will adopt one if they stumble across it </li></ul></ul>
  28. 37. How They Find Information <ul><ul><li>Why? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Time is scarce – it takes more time to consider all the options than to guess intelligently </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>There’s usually not much of a penalty for guessing wrong – the Back button is always close by </li></ul></ul></ul>*Source: Don’t Make Me Think <ul><ul><li>Users don’t make optimal choices, they choose the first reasonable option </li></ul></ul>
  29. 40. <ul><li>Figure out who your customers are </li></ul><ul><li>Figure out how they want to use your website </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t assume they WANT to be on your website </li></ul><ul><li>Make the website easy for them to use! </li></ul>