This article showcases modern and interesting contact/web form solutions found around the Internet. I also collected interesting ways how people decide to call their contact forms – get in touch, contact info, say hello, talk to me, say hey, connect, say “hi”, mail us and of course – contact us.
What affects decision outcomes most is the actual context in which people make decisions. All kinds of things affect decision making—the type of decision someone is making, the decision maker’s level of expertise, the number of options available, the way and order in which options are presented, and many others. This column examines how the number of available options affects the decision-making process.
Time is an important design variable to understand. Your user experience is effected by it no matter what user experience you are serving up and the rules are different for every context. For example, the "three click rule" (users must get to their destination within three clicks) applies to e-commerce primarily but not to mortgage education, financial services usability or reading the New York Times online.
What started out as something people did via e-mail and bookmark-sharing services like Delicious, is now moving to Facebook, Twitter, and other social broadcasting services. It is just so much more efficient to share a link once with all your friends and followers than to send it to each one individually.
There is no single best way to have users sign up for an account online, because there are too many variables to be considered for this aspect of the user experience. Varying factors can include security, purpose of the account, understanding of the user at the time of signup, what information they must have ready and what they will have to do next, among other things. So to point to a cool new site – even a competitor’s – and say “I want a one-field signup process like that!” does not necessarily serve your needs or your user’s. In fact, there is an awesome site I recommend to people that suffers greatly from a confusing signup process because they tried to simplify it too much.
As user experience professionals, we have the opportunity to work more closely with brand and marketing specialists to clearly articulate the brand perception we want to elicit from our customers. Brand perception is, in part, an expectation on the part of a customer regarding future interactions with a company and its products and services. To achieve our desired brand perception, we must consistently represent and deliver the brand values we have led customers to expect.
While the presence of many trust elements, aids, and cues throughout an ecommerce site contributes to customers’ perception of its trustworthiness, as UX designers, we can build greater trust by including and appropriately placing these identified trust elements on a site’s home page, as this article describes.
A number of organisations are experimenting with how the experience of reading a paper book or a magazine can be replicated when they are displayed on a screen. Underlying all of these, is an assumption that people can and want to read content online (or on screen) in the same way as they read paper books and magazines.
This is the recording of the presentation from the Catalyze Community monthly webcast featuring Charlie Kreitzberg on December 13, 2007. Charlie spoke on "Web 2 and You - How Web 2.0 Will Catapult Business Analysts and Usability Professionals into Center Stage" which examined his models for understanding Web 2.0 and explored the vast opportunities for professionals who define and design new software and websites.
People often don’t know exactly how they want software to allow them to complete a task. They recognize how the existing software makes them work around what they want, and they understand vague ideas like “make it easy to use”, but they may not be able to translate that into interface design. And why should they?
Because each website appeals to its audience differently, the prudent user experience designer takes a measured approach when communicating, especially when they do so on behalf of their client. No matter what the vision and no matter how it’s executed, a design can always communicate more effectively.
We propose a case study outlining our efforts to create a user experience culture at a mid-sized financial services company. Four years ago there were no web application interface standards, only individual software engineers without usability backgrounds, working in different areas of the company. Every application looked and behaved differently!
We've learned that using a web site is a progressive process. Each user transitions from one stage to the next, as they work to accomplish their goal. The most pronounced transitions we've seen are on e-commerce sites. When we watch shoppers focusing on buying a product, we can clearly see each stage and when the transitions fail or succeed. By understanding the stages and how they work, we can learn a lot about building better sites.
For the most part, we create Web sites to get users to do something—for example, to make a purchase, donate to a cause, or sign up for our service. It is our expectation that users will make decisions about how to proceed. But are we designing for optimal decision making by users?
Despite all the talk about data-informed design, there is not much agreement on what data really means for a product or service’s user experience. That might be because teams don’t yet have a shared language for talking about data, or because access to data is uneven or siloed, or perhaps because team members have different goals for the use of data.
As we explore what social technologies can offer and the boundaries they can cross—boundaries that had confined the traditional Web—UX professionals must now take up a new design challenge. We must address the changing needs for social media and facilitate users’ taking better advantage of everything social media has to offer.
We create software and websites to display and represent information to people. That information could be anything; a company’s product list, pictures of your vacation, or an instant message from a friend. At this moment, there’s more information available to you than at any other time in history.
Until recently, Josh Clark’s charts of thumb-sweep ranges represented the state of the art in understanding touch interactions. In creating his charts, Josh surmised that elements at the top of the screen—and especially those on the opposite side from the thumb, or in the upper-left corner for right-handers—were hard to reach, and thus, designers should place only rare or dangerous actions in that location. Since then, we’ve seen that people stretch and shift their grip to reach targets anywhere on the screen, without apparent complaint. The iPhone’s Back button doesn’t appear to present any particular hardship to users. So the assumption behind those charts seems to be wrong—at least in the theory behind it. But are there other critical constraints at work? I am starting to think that it’s time for us to start designing for fingers and thumbs instead of for touch.
The key to creating great service experiences lies with uncovering data and using it in meaningful contexts that have real benefits to users. Recent advances in wearable tech, location-based data and sensors are driving greater interest by consumers in personalized data experiences. Google Glass and the Nike FuelBand are pushing boundaries on what users can expect inside the services of tomorrow. For designers, however, data presents a very interesting challenge: How can we better understand the value of data and leverage it to make digital experiences more meaningful?
As information architects, interaction designers, usability consultants, and developers, we don't have to change our careers to do something good for society. All we have to do is connect with the right nonprofit: One that shares our goals and whose mission we support.