The Online User Experience


Aima_logoAiMA (Atlanta Interactive Marketing Assoc) pulled off another great event. Tonight's meeting focused on how to develop successful online user-experiences.

Donavan Panone, VP Online Behavior at Spunlogic, put together a panel of brand stars: Laura Hunnicutt - Delta, Jason Kleckner - Target, Jill Hewitt - UPS and Chuck Konfrst - InterContinental Hotels Group.

The web is all about interactive. It's getting people to do something. It's about measurement.

  • Integrate the user experience from the start of a website development project
  • Bad online experience = bad for business
  • A successful user experience blends the users' needs with the business objectives and bottom line results (sales, conversion, customer loyalty, grow revenue, save costs, create buzz,  customer delight, etc.)
  • Brand perception is critical
  • Research/customer feedback was important during all phases of development, as well as, after launch
  • All panelists felt testing was critical. Techniques used included: online surveys, panels, usability labs, paper tests.
    Sidebar: I asked if the panelists were using consumer generated media data or monitoring. Several people said they looked in on Flyer Talk - discussion boards. However, no company had a formal cgm program.
  • Fresh eyes are critical before you launch and/or before you present to a client. If you can't afford a formal usability lab/testing at least pull in some people who haven't worked on the project. Give them a few tasks to perform. What seems obvious to you may not be that way to the user.

Laura Hunnicutt clued us in on the (high level) process that Delta used to redesign their site. Only one person in room (there were over 125 people) had not visited the site. Not a big surprise since this was Atlanta ... Delta land.

Conduct Needs Assessment
Test/review current site
Participant tests/needs
Build models
Visual development and layout style (focus groups)
Behavioral validation
Lessons learned: Less is more in terms of  advertising messages.

What do these user experience experts see in the crystal balls? More customization and personalization. Better intuitive navigation.

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Right. I think experts need to study more on how the "user experinece" works. This is one way to see through how you could develop better your website. Some companies rely on what "they think" is better in an online environment and this must never be done in the first place. Above all, I think what is important is designing the site according to what users want.

Posted by: Mary on Feb 27, 2006 5:47:27 PM

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