• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL
Help

Chapter 9. Web Site Usability and Access... > Ensuring Your Site Is Easy to Use

Ensuring Your Site Is Easy to Use

If you browse the Web regularly, chances are good that you've visited a site that is confusing, difficult to navigate, or hard to use. That experience can be frustrating and often prevents full use of the site. If you've experienced this, you've experienced poor Web site usability. And so have many customers. You might be wondering how these sites are being built. Didn't the designers and developers think of their users? They probably thought they did, but in reality, did not. Web teams often make a couple big mistakes, including

  • Assuming users will understand what they're building without asking any of them if they do. Always make testing a part of your plan up front; that way, you won't be rushed when it's time for testing.

  • Viewing negative feedback from users as nitpicking. Why ask for feedback if you don't plan to improve the site, based on what you find out?

  • Not asking themselves, “Who are we building this for?” If the answer is that they're building a site for themselves, ignoring people who end up visiting the site is okay.

Realistically, all sites are ultimately built for the visitors. You can do your best to build a site that works for them by conducting usability testing. Usability testing can be informal or formal. The approach you take depends on the scope of your project, the size of your budget, and the nature of your audience. You can conduct informal usability testing by sitting down with a person who represents your target audience. As the tester tries to use your site, note any areas that cause problems, ask questions about how easy or hard to use the site is, and give your tester a list of tasks to accomplish (again, noting how easy or difficult any task is to do). More‐formal testing might involve e‐mailing a link to the site to several individuals, along with a questionnaire that each person fills out and returns to you within a specified timeframe.


PREVIEW

                                                                          

Not a subscriber?

Start A Free Trial


  
  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint