July 8, 2001
When we asked users to find a nearby store, office, dealership, or other outlet based on information provided at a parent company's website, users succeeded only 63% of the time. On average, the 10 sites we studied complied with less than half of our 21 usability guidelines for locator design.
June 10, 2001
Forcing users to browse PDF files makes usability approximately 300% worse compared to HTML pages. Only use PDF for documents that users are likely to print. In those cases, following six basic guidelines will minimize usability problems.
October 29, 2000
Flash reduces usability for three reasons: it makes bad design more likely, it breaks the Web's fundamental interaction style, and it consumes resources that would be better spent enhancing a site's core value.
July 23, 2000
Websites have to reduce their differences and allow advanced features to either become standard across sites or be extracted from the sites altogether and placed in the browser. Focus on services and content; use a standard design.
May 28, 2000
Since 1995, the readership of the Alertbox has grown by 4,800%. Most of the 105 old usability columns remain valid to this day since people change more slowly than the technology. But the Alertbox has encountered some setbacks as well.
April 30, 2000
Napster, IE 5 for the Mac, and Yahoo FinanceVision introduce specialized Internet UIs beyond the standard page viewing that had been unchanged since Mosaic.
April 16, 2000
Most Web forms would have improved usability if the Reset button was removed. Cancel buttons are also often of little value on the Web.
December 26, 1999
Micropayments will start with value-added content; mobile access; advice and sales become unbundled and physical experience environments may launch.
October 3, 1999
Ten design elements that would increase the usability of virtually all websites if only they were employed more widely.
September 19, 1999
The basic ideology of the Internet is bit transport; we need a utility-focused human-centered ideology for its fundamental architecture and protocols.
August 22, 1999
Standards ensure a consistent vocabulary, but don't limit designers' freedom (and responsibility) in deeper design issues. Also: Guidelines for writing design standards.
July 25, 1999
Partitioning the Web into N unlinked or otherwise isolated parts will reduce its overall value by a
factor of N. A proprietary AOL instant messaging system will be worth only 4% of the full potential, and 1/3 will be completely lost.
May 30, 1999
New technology and conventions have led to several new classes of usability problems in Web design.
May 16, 1999
Major websites violate 16% of the top
ten mistakes in Web design on the average; huge corporate sites have many
more design mistakes than the most popular sites.
May 2, 1999
Nine of ten mistakes in Web design identified in May 1996 still cause severe usability problems and should be avoided in modern websites.
March 21, 1999
Users continue to type and guess URLs and domain names, so Web usability can be improved by better URLs. In the long term this machine-level addressing scheme must be hidden.
February 7, 1999
A survey of 1,780 people who have bought
something on the Web found that convenience and ease of use are the
main reasons to shop on the Web. Non-buying visits (product research) are important to shoppers.
December 27, 1998
Mobile access becomes 3rd Killer App for the Internet, Web standards rebound, customer service is automated, e-commerce patents are issued, and the Web has its own Y2K problems
November 1, 1998
Yahoo has great usability and huge traffic because it embraces the characteristics of the Internet medium:
minimalist design and many structured links. But Yahoo may not scale to keep up with the growth of the net.
October 18, 1998
Most corporate sites are so bad that Web usability problems cost a large company millions of dollars per year. On average, users fail when they try to accomplish tasks on the Web.
January 4, 2012
What is usability? How, when, and where to improve it? Why should you care? Overview answers basic questions + how to run fast user tests.
August 5, 2001
For good UX, pay attention to what users do, not what they say. Self-reported claims are unreliable, as are user speculations about future behavior.
January 1, 1995
Jakob Nielsen's 10 general principles for interaction design. They are called "heuristics" because they are broad rules of thumb and not specific usability guidelines.
September 8, 2003
Misconceptions about usability's expense, the time it involves, and its creative impact prevent companies from getting crucial user data, as does the erroneous belief that existing customer-feedback methods are a valid driver for interface design.
September 13, 2004
Users expect 77% of the simpler Web design elements to behave in a certain way. Unfortunately, confusion reigns for many higher-level design issues.
January 1, 2011
The ten most egregious offenses against users. Web design disasters and HTML horrors are legion, though many usability atrocities are less common than they used to be.
October 24, 2011
Sites have improved, and we now know much more about e-tailing usability. Today, poor content is the main cause of user failure.
April 5, 1998
Users' bandwidth grows by 50% per year (10% less than Moore's Law). The new law fits data from 1983 to 2013.