User Experience Testing in Minneapolis - Tim Brown
Starting further back
Working with a small design team on this local chiropractor's site was a truly new and invigorating experience. Though it was difficult to restrain ourselves from jumping into the design immediately, there was immense value in cultivating understanding about the business, and the site's User's goals. We created personas and through talking with the business's owner we found many people that utilize her practice are very location and convenience conscious and we moved forward with that amongst other insights.
What are they afraid of, what will delight them?
We focused on the area's culture, the potential users and the needs they would have from this site. Clear navigation, an authentic feel, and clear indications of location were pinpointed as crucial.
We used card sorting as a tool to find out which features make sense to individuals as related groups. Treatments, and symptoms were grouped under the heading of care, and we found that insurance information, forms, and payment made sense being closely grouped.
Good design doesn't always start pretty. In fact, it's better if beauty comes later, so the design can solidify on a solid core of heirarchy between the elements and navigation. We sketched out the home page and inner pages, and reworked them with the user's and the business's goals in mind
So the design finally made it onto our Macbook Pro's, and it was time to tap our Adobe Suite expertise. We created low fidelity versions first, talked about what was successful and what could be improved, and then made changes.
Heuristic Testing & First Round User Testing
Although talented designers with big brains, we don't always know what the people using the website are thinking and can have a type of blindness from looking at the design too long. We first tested generalities (does everything that is clickable, look clickable, does the visual heirarchy makes sense) during Heuristic testing and then did 'User Testing' where we asked questions more specifically related to tasks actual users of the site would be trying to accomplish.
Revise and Test Again
We found that things were needed; the headers on the inner pages were too large as to be misleading that they were on some kind of home page. Dropdowns would make things easier to access, things that we hadn't thought would need to be clickable, needed to be. I was part of the process of re-evaluating, sketching out new changes, and coding them with HTML, CSS, Jquery, and PHP into the site. After doing the initial build from scratch as a real-code prototype, we migrated it into WordPress so the client could update the content easily themselves with little knowledge of code.
Getting out again with real users
With a working HTML and CSS prototype we were able to change some of the design halfway through our second session of Guerilla User Testing. This way we could test other things without some of the first issues we were noticing getting in the way.
Working with the client
We found that the client wanted more of a light feel on the front page, so we we modified it while considering the user oriented suggestions as well. All and all the process was very enlightening, and our first site using a more intensive UX process is now launched at nemplschiro.com. This small design group process taught me alot about myself, in my capacity as front-end developer, UX designer, visual designer, and as a person. My character has grown because of it. - View Organization Involvement