What is Usability and do I really need it?Usability (a.k.a. user-centered design) is not some abstract academic discipline. Any design,- not only web design, but also design of books, furniture, automobiles, cell phones, etc. must be user centered.
Usability is about ease and effectiveness of use. Web usability is about websites.
Web site, if it's created properly, will be easy to use so the customer does not get frustrated and leave the site for competitor's.
Undoubtedly, any website has some usability. But too often it's just "poor", "insufficient", and therefore doesn't work!
In a usable site, customers easily recognize navigation and become efficient users.
If one can't understand how to reach his goals (buy a product , find information etc.), he will leave you site and find some other place. Even if he found a way to navigate the site, the web surfer may not like the pop-up adds, or slow page changes and you will still lose him.
Why outsource usability work?Usually it's necessary to look at the website "from new stand point" to see some usability problems. In-house developers know the product too close and can miss difficulties with "obvious" tasks.
An outsourcing studio is much more likely to provide neutral feedback, not tied to any particular interest but users'.
Another reason is that such a studio has necessary skills and experience, gained from previous clients.
What services we offer:
- Usability research. Heuristic evaluation of the whole site or just some part (homepage, shopping cart etc)
- Strategic and Competitive Analysis (your site vs. competitors'). Review of your and competitors' sites and strategy development.
- Usability testing with real users (up to 15 users involved).
- Heuristic Evaluation (review by experts).
- Creating design mockups based on above research.
Now you can use these effects in Flash IDE or at runtime.
Easy to configure.
What experts say:
"Don't companies realize that in today's world, the website is a great opportunity to practice customer-centered interaction - make the customers happy and they will come back again and again? Frustrate them and, well, the competition is only a click away."Don Norman (www.jnd.org)
"Most ‘usability engineering’ is just a better way of doing a job that will be done anyway"Tom Farrell, "Usability and Cost-Cutting"
"E-commerce sites lose almost half of their potential sales because users cannot use the site. In other words, with better usability, the average site could increase its current sales by 79%."Jakob Nielsen (useit.com)