Articles

Topic: User Behavior

Satisficing: Quickly Meet Users’ Main Needs

March 30, 2014

Unless faced with life-changing information, most site visitors won't read all of the content provided but settle for a “good-enough” answer. Better sorting and clearer writing satisfy users without exhausting the limited time they’re willing to spend on a website.

Designing for 5 Types of E-Commerce Shoppers

March 2, 2014

Considering e-commerce shoppers’ motivations and habits when they come to a site can help designers make decisions that improve overall site usability while supporting users’ needs.

The Halo Effect

November 9, 2013

The Halo Effect is when one trait of a person or thing is used to make an overall judgment of that person or thing. It supports rapid decisions, even if biased ones.

Tunnel Vision and Selective Attention

August 27, 2012

Users don't see stuff that's right on the screen. Selective attention makes people overlook things outside their focus of interest.

College Students on the Web

December 15, 2010

Students are multitaskers who move through websites rapidly, often missing the item they come to find. They're enraptured by social media but reserve it for private conversations and thus visit company sites from search engines.

Children's Websites: Usability Issues in Designing for Kids

September 13, 2010

New research with users aged 3-12 shows that older kids have gained substantial Web proficiency since our last studies, while younger kids still face many problems. Designing for children requires distinct usability approaches, including targeting content narrowly for different ages of kids.

Horizontal Attention Leans Left

April 6, 2010

Web users spend 69% of their time viewing the left half of the page and 30% viewing the right half. A conventional layout is thus more likely to make sites profitable.

Scrolling and Attention

March 22, 2010

Web users spend 80% of their time looking at information above the page fold. Although users do scroll, they allocate only 20% of their attention below the fold.

Velocity of Media Consumption: TV vs. the Web

November 24, 2009

The granularity of user decisions is much finer on the Web, which is dominated by the instant gratification of the user's needs in any given instant. Content must cater to this rapid pace.

Stop Password Masking

June 23, 2009

Usability suffers when users type in passwords and the only feedback they get is a row of bullets. Typically, masking passwords doesn't even increase security, but it does cost you business due to login failures.

Why Journalists Leave Websites

January 19, 2009

22 case studies of failed PR information on corporate websites, with examples of when journalists decided to leave a site during story research.

Middle-Aged Users' Declining Web Performance

March 31, 2008

Between the ages of 25 and 60, people's ability to use websites declines by 0.8% per year - mostly because they spend more time per page, but also because of navigation difficulties.

User Skills Improving, But Only Slightly

February 4, 2008

Users now do basic operations with confidence and perform with skill on sites they use often. But when users try new sites, well-known usability problems still cause failures.

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