A while ago, I was discussing the User Interface (UI) / User Experience (UX) with a friend who was building a B2C internet service. We're discussing the user process flow through the service's most critical feature.
Whilst building a B2C service at Midentity, I was handed some painfully humiliating lessons about the level of (in)competence of my users / what they understood about my product and its features / how much information they retained when they moved from screen to screen.
I emphasised to my good friend the very high standard of the user experience that is required for a B2C service. It has to be crystal clear.
My user experience litmus testHere's the ideal usage scenario vs the actual scenario
|Ideal Usage||Actual Usage|
|User is focussed on the task in hand|
User is insanely multi-tasking:
|Timely Completion of Task||Intermittent Usage|
|User has clear understanding what the service provides||Very hazy comprehension of the service|
|Clear understanding of what parts of the user will benefit from||User discovers the product's benefits by using it, not be reading about it.
What's the difference between B2C and B2B UX?B2B users are paid to use your product or service. They are much more compelled to read the instructions / follow the process / get it right. They may have distractions but, in general, these will be much less than in the B2C environment.
- Use your product in the Actual Usage mode above - even better get your love one to use your product in the Actual Usage mode - and prepared to be depressed!
- Every screen needs to be self supporting ie don't conclude that the user knew what button they pressed to get to the current screen OR why they pressed it originally.
- Revisage constant restarts (eg multiple registrations, forgotten password requests half way through registration).
- Watch 'virigin' / untouched new users as often as you can.
- Use focus groups.
- BUT be wary, users will say they want X functionality, but once produced never use it.
- Groups are also susceptible to Group Think ie one person makes a suggestion and the group conforms to that opinion, even if all the individuals individually don't profess to have that opinion.
- Track what users actually do, not what they say they do.