Some Stuff About User Experience, eCommerce, Social Media & etc.

Tag Archives: jakob nielsen

E-Commerce Usability

Sites have improved, and we now know much more about e-tailing usability. Today, poor content is the main cause of user failure.

It’s been 11 years since our original studies of e-commerce usability — long enough that it’s definitely worth revisiting the topic. The bottom line? The number of usability guidelines for e-commerce sites has increased from 207 in the first edition of the report to 874 in the new edition. Using this rough metric, we now know 4.2 times as much about e-commerce user experience as we did during the dot-com bubble.

Usability: Marked Improvements

In our study 11 years ago, we recorded a success rate of 56% across 496 task attempts on the e-commerce sites of the day. In our new research, we observed 507 e-commerce task attempts and measured a success rate of 72%.

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Defer Secondary Content When Writing for Mobile Users

Mobile devices require a tight focus in content presentation, with the first screen limited to only the most essential information.

We’ve recently run many user studies, watching people read information on mobile devices. Our research included mobile websites, apps, and email newsletters. Across all formats, there’s one indispensable element: focus.

Of course, there are many other points to consider (detailed findings to be presented this Saturday in New York), but this one issue is the main usability guideline for mobile content:

  • When writing for mobile users, you must focus their attention on the essential content.

Prior research has shown that it’s 108% harder to understand information when reading from a mobile screen. Content comprehension suffers when you’re looking through a peephole, because there’s little visible context. The less you can see, the more you have to remember, and human short-term memory is notoriously weak.

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