Satisfaction: the difference between Robots and Humans


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*My mother bought a Mac!*

I recently helped my mother buy a computer on the Apple website. The experience was almost perfect. The site is well organized and features all the information you need to compare different systems. There are large photos of each product, with complete specifications to help you find the best computer for your needs. On top of that, the configuration utility is tops, offering clear explanations of each option. An excellent example of polite design! My mother didn’t even need me!

*Apple has some work to do*

But you will notice that I said the experience was “almost” perfect. At the payment stage, the billing didn’t indicate the final amount with taxes. My mother was being asked to authorize payment for an unknown amount. Kind of like signing a blank cheque! She asked me why it worked this way. Having worked at Apple for a short time, I answered what I always answered when asked this question, “That’s just how the system works.”

My mother - a user of the site, the one who clicks the “buy” button - doesn’t care about the system. If there’s a technical issue, she won’t know about it, doesn’t understand it and, honestly, doesn’t even want to know. She just wants to see her final total before authorizing the transaction.

*Mistakes not to make*

This situation perfectly illustrates three of the seven major mistakes that an e-commerce site can make. Here’s the full list:

- Purchase process is not reassuring
- Poorly explained goals and tasks
- Complex transaction procedures
- Weak information architecture
- Inconsistency between different areas of the site
- Lack of information required to complete the purchase.
- Poor management of errors

It’s important to mention that practically all of these mistakes can be avoided if the user is considered as a human being and not as a robot. Do you know how to tell the difference? And you, do you have any examples of e-commerce sites who commit these seven mistakes?

Here’s a presentation I gave on the subject during the February 28 MTL eCommerce Meetup.

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Satisfaction: the difference between Robots and Humans

  1. 1. SatisfactionThe difference betweenRobots and Humans@CynthiaSavardCYNTHIA SAVARD SAUCIERUX Specialist@TP1
  2. 2. What is the differencebetween robots andhumans?
  3. 3. Robotslike efficiency,HumansPrefer politeness.Difference #1
  4. 4. Polite design?Mr. Clippy
  5. 5. - Clippy claims to know what you want to do;- He monitors your actions,but does not remember your preferences;- Even if you close his window,he keeps coming back;- He’s the guest that never knows when to leave,no matter how manytimes you ask him to...Clippy is not polite :
  6. 6. Mr.Clippywassuchaspectacularfailure,his demisewaspartoftheSALES PITCHDespitefor Microsoft XP.25,000 hoursof user testing,Whitworth, B., 2005
  7. 7. 1. Ask permission before interrupting2. Offer a choice to your users3. Explain these options4. Respect the user’s final choiceWhat should be done:
  8. 8. Robotsdon’t.Humanshave genders,Difference #2
  9. 9. Designing for womenYou should consider
  10. 10. A woman is the CEO of her family.Why?
  11. 11. She is responsible for 58% of online purchases80% of product purchasesAs the 2009
  12. 12. However...believe that electronics manufacturers have their needsin mind when developing products.1%believe that brands only consider the female market forcleaning and beauty products.Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)71%
  13. 13. This leads tocatastrophes:Finally, a pen for females!
  14. 14. In the field of technologies :
  15. 15. Tech tips?Find recipes;Counting calories;Guided meditations,Wow, they got everything right!
  16. 16. 1. Use human presence instead of heavy text.2. Contextualize your product in scenarios.3. Use different types of navigation (related products,favorite,selections,etc.)How to speak to women then?
  17. 17. Do you feature a woman outside of the home?Do you feature a women in a role other than “mother”?Is she NOT doing yoga?Is she eating something other than salad or yogurt?Buchanan testCongratulations!Try the
  18. 18. And be careful, this isn’t reality :I can’t do that!
  19. 19. Robotslike systems and rules,Humansare irrational and don’tunderstand systems.Difference #3
  20. 20. e-commerce sitedon’t understand why youroptimal for them!Useris NOT
  21. 21. The 100 most profitablewebsites onlinewere Smashing Magazine
  22. 22. 5 STEPSin the purchase process.Onaverage,theyhave
  23. 23. of companies think thattheir e-newsletter isToday,ESSENTIAL.81%
  24. 24. require clients to createan account profile.24%Can you imagine being asked for a password every time you order chickennuggets at McDonald’s?
  25. 25. ask that information beentered twice.50%The reason used to explain this is often: «That’s how the system works».
  26. 26. But I just gave you my email address!
  27. 27. Robotsare okwith muffins,Humanslikes cupcakes.Difference #4
  28. 28. emotional connection.As long as they find anUsers won’t mind :if it takes more time;if it’s more expensive;if it’s less efficient.
  29. 29. 1. Surprise2. Attention-grabbing3. Entertainment4. CutenessEmotional connectors :
  30. 30. Comic Sansis not “entertaining”.#ThursdayConfessions: I have always dreamed ofusing Comic sans in a presentation.
  31. 31. Emotionally-intelligentdesignTwo emotional connectors create :
  32. 32. try it out!
  33. 33. money, more dance!
  34. 34. Play Tic-Tac-Toe whileyou wait!
  35. 35. My favourite, obviously!Skype
  36. 36. Remember...Humans are irratial, emotional users.
  37. 37. Thank you!
  38. 38. ReferencesPolite design:Whitworth,B.,2005,Polite Computing,October,Behaviour & InformationTechnology. vol. 24,no. 5,September,p353 – 363 PresentationClippy: for women: electronics Association (CEA) 2009Women: to speak to women: process in 2012: Mr Valaire: Tac Toe: images are from these 3 great videos :