Use Your Executive Summary to Demonstrate You Know the Website and to Forecast Design Recommendations
This is a great example of how to do this:
The following usability test was conducted on November 10th, 2018. The following report aims to evaluate the pros and cons of the company’s website (https://www.aldi.us/). The company’s website allows users to browse various types of food goods. This includes produce, dairy, meats, etc. The page features food that is appropriate for the season (for example, when this usability test was set into motion, the website presented the viewer with images of Thanksgiving food). Other aspects to the site includes links to Grocery & Goods, Be Inspired, About ALDI, Weekly Specials (Aldi, 2018).
Based on the findings, the analyst suggests the five recommendations:
Reduce the amount of links
Organize different types of food groups (such as vegan and gluten free) in an easier and accessible location.
Make the website easier for older people to understand.
Include a home office number.
Reduce the number of pictures.
Here, the author starts by giving a date for the usability test, stating the purpose of the website tested, and then gives design recommendations. Do those things in your executive summary.
Describe How Users Behaved to Illustrate Pain Points
The power of usability testing is demonstrating to owners of websites and other applications how users actually behave when they’re not around. Note how this writer describes what users did during their test:
For the first task, All three users took over two minutes to complete it. I noticed that users tend to begin this task by browsing the menu bar at the top of the homepage. When they could not find email updates here, two out of three users began scrolling to the bottom of the page and one used the search bar. This user found that when “email” was entered in to the search bar, the results consisted of watches and not a link to sign up for emails. Once this user realized they were unsuccessful, they returned to the home page and also scrolled to the bottom. Once the users reached the bottom, two of the users found the link immediately and one overlooked it once before looking again and locating it.
Be sure you describe what users actually did for all of the pain points you identified in order to help the client understand each issue you observed.
Add Callouts to Screenshots to Illustrate Features
It is often hard for clients to understand the exact interactions users have with their websites, even when you describe it for them. Notice how this writer uses a brief callout to indicate the exact issue:
This helps the client understand the exact element on their website that is in need of improvement, visually. Add callouts to all your screenshots to indicate the exact feature that needs improvement for all of your pain points.
Make Design Recommendations Sound Helpful and Doable
Clients can easily get overwhelmed when reading a usability report about their website, especially if they start the report with the perception that their website is perfect. You can soften the blow of the report by making your design recommendations sound like something that is within their power:
You could improve this website by making it easier for students to find study abroad programs. I would recommend putting the map on the front page instead of a video promo for study abroad. Anyone visiting the website is already most likely interested in study abroad, so you should grab their attention with what programs they could participate in. The video can remain on the page, but it should be the only thing on the page. It can be smaller and on the right-hand side.
The website needs to have sections, so students can see what study abroad options are available for their major. Students aren’t going to pay $4,000 or more for classes that aren’t in their degree plan. If you want to get more students to study abroad, you need to show them programs available to them for their major.
Note how this writer focuses on actions the users want to take, how to make these actions easier for users you take, and what needs to be changed about the website to accomplish this. Be sure you illustrate all of those things in your design recommendations section.
What’s Due Monday at Midnight
5) 11/19/18 by midnight >>
Revise all documents you’ve created. Remember that the point of these reviews is to help you improve your writing. This process will be negated if the draft you submit to Eli is the same as the draft you hand in as your final (and end up eventually showing to your community partner). Revise, revise, revise. Listen to your reviewers and make critical choices to improve your documents based on what they say.