How to Measure UX

Let’s say you are on a team that needs to create a better user experience – you come up with some changes, get support from your stakeholders, and deploy. What happens next? Was the UX really improved? Can you justify to your stakeholders that you did your job?

Without credible UX success measurements, we all risk not being able to quantify our success.  Without credible UX success measurements, we are unable to align our efforts to an organization’s business objectives and desired outcomes. This often results in UX efforts becoming very unfocused, undefined and easily changed on a whim. Basically, you’re left having to tell a very subjective story of your UX success or failures, which unfortunately, could lead to you and your team being very exposed. – Mark Disciullo, User Experience Strategist and Designer

In order to quantify the progress (if any) was made, your team should be conducting iterative studies and tests throughout the development of your app/site. Before conducting any study, it is necessary to define 1) the goals you want to reach and 2) the metrics you want to track.

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UX Must-Read: Don’t Make Me Think Revisited

This book is everything I like in an educational book: easy-to-read, fun, well-organized, and most importantly: useful. Steve Krug, an expert UX consultant with over 20 years of experience, gives his readers a glimpse of what one should have in the back of their mind when designing a web or mobile site in order to bring the best usability and experience to one’s users.

One simple, yet clarifying and fundamental piece of information is when Krug actually defines usability:

“Usability means making sure something works well, and that a person of average ability or experience can use it for its intended purpose without getting hopelessly frustrated.”

An unexpected point that Krug shed light on was that there are predominately two-types of website users: those who search (search-dominant users) and those who browse (browse-dominant users). This means that when designing a site/app, it is important to take in these two types of users and to make sure that they can both navigate your site without having to think and be “road-blocked”.

Krug does a great job highlighting other books, resources and tools to read if someone wants to learn more about a specific area, such as accessibility. Here are two that I enjoyed and am taking advantage of:

  1. Watch this video about the invention of a book in medieval times :). Too many similarities to when new technologies are introduced today!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQHX-SjgQvQ
  2. Want to help out to do usability testing? This site, UserTesting.com, offers a great chance to do some, and even pays you $10 for each one you do.

One awesome aspect about the book? You don’t have to be a UX expert to read it! You don’t even need to be a designer/product manager/researcher/insert tech job here to get valuable pieces of advice from it. If you want to buy your own version of Don’t Make Me Think Revisited, you can buy it here on Amazon – enjoy!