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位置与可用性研究无关

通过 雅各布·尼尔森April 30,2007

总结:无论在何处进行用户测试,您都能获得相同的见解,所以没有理由在多个城市进行测试。When a city is dominated by your own industry,然而,你绝对应该去别的地方测试。


只要你在一个国家测试,没有理由花费资源到多个城市旅行,一次又一次地进行同样的可用性研究。You'll simply反复观察同样的行为,什么也学不到.最好是节省你的预算,把钱花在新的测试上,不管是额外的设计想法还是竞争对手的设计。manbetx官方网站手机版

This conclusion -- that the test location doesn't matter -- is different than the usual lesson from market research,where you find different results in different regions of the country.因此,在4到5个城市开展焦点小组是很常见的,or more if the budget allows.

因为传统的智慧建议在多个地方进行研究,we've done so for many projects over the years.But,except for the few special cases discussed below,我们总是发现相同的可用性发现,不管我们在哪里测试。到目前为止,we can clearly conclude that it's a waste of money to do user testing in more than one city within a country.

行为vsOpinion

当涉及到所需研究地点的数量时,为什么可用性与市场研究不同?因为在可用性方面,we测试行为,不是意见.此外,我们测试behavior with a defined artifact(即,特定的用户界面)。

人们在不同的地区有着不同的态度,包括他们为某一特定产品支付的费用以及有多少人首先想要该产品。

But when it comes to reacting to a set of interaction manbetx官方网站手机版design options,人们通常对屏幕元素的解释是一样的,no matter where they live.在一个城市容易的事情在另一个城市也一样容易。例如,面包屑facilitate navigation of hierarchical websites equally well in Los Angeles,纽约,或者博伊西,Idaho.你不需要到处测试你的面包屑设计。manbetx官方网站手机版Similarly,许多网络用户依赖于搜索,不是因为他们生活在农村或城市环境中,但因为搜索本身就是一种有用的方式,用户可以控制一个巨大而分散的信息空间。

为什么一个位置就足够了

为了说明为什么单个测试位置足够,我们将以停车计时器为例。

在一些城市,支付停车费会被认为是无耻的:就像为你呼吸的空气收费一样。在其他城市,每小时25美分是可以接受的,而在其他城市,每小时几美元可能是正常的。所以,对停车费进行市场调查肯定要作为每个城市的一个单独项目来完成。

But,let's say that we're testing parking meter可用性: Can users determine where they're supposed to insert their money?Can they understand the instructions about the cost per hour?Do they notice the display showing the time they've paid for?Do they understand that the number changes to indicate remaining time?

The answers to these questions are crucial for the meter's interaction manbetx官方网站手机版design.The answers would also be the same everywhere,这就是为什么设计团队只需要manbetx官方网站手机版在一个位置测试.

在某些情况下,multiple tests might be beneficial.第一,if a parking meter is intended for a region that had never before charged for parking,这可能是一个好主意,测试用户谁是完全新的停车收费表的概念。Novices would doubtlessly encounter more usability problems than more experienced users.Second,停车费很高的城市可能需要一个功能,允许用户使用信用卡或美元钞票而不是硬币支付;这个不同的用户界面需要不同的测试。Note: you can meet both of these additional testing needs without traveling to a new city -- it's a matter of which users you test,以及您要求他们尝试的功能。

In most cases,differences are due todiversity in the users' circumstances,不受地理变化的影响。It's therefore best to招募不同的用户: some experienced users,一些新手;some young,some old;some doctors,一些护士;一些忠实的客户,some who swear by your competition.通常,you can cover the spectrum of user profiles in one location.重要的是人们和他们的行为之间的差异,not the differences between cities.

另一个原因是把你的考试限制在你喜欢的城市?它通常是你的基地。当你在自己的城市测试时,对其他人来说要容易得多设计和开发团队成员观察测试manbetx官方网站手机版.对,理论上,他们可以看录像。在实践中,然而,没有什么比在客户使用你的设计时观看他们的现场直播更好的了。manbetx官方网站手机版Having the direct,观察用户测试会话的个人体验是一个强大的激励因素,可以让团队成员购买可用性发现。因此,even if there might be a theoretical benefit from testing in another city,如果您在自己的地盘上测试,通常会得到更多的可用性发现。

When to Test Elsewhere

在可用性方面,一般规则有例外。在少数情况下,测试位置很重要。

有时,一个行业主宰着一个地区在某种程度上,它被认为是一个公司镇。Such dominance might be due to a single company or to several similar companies.Example公司镇包括:

  • 底特律if you're testing a car site
  • 华盛顿,DC,如果你在测试一个政府网站
  • 好莱坞if you're testing a movie site
  • 曼哈顿市中心,如果你正在测试一个投资网站
  • 布鲁塞尔if you're testing a European Union site
  • 硅谷if you're testing a technology site

作为后者的一个例子,I remember a test I ran about 10 years ago.在招募我们的测试用户,我们按照常规程序筛选出可用性方面的工作人员,网络营销,接口设计,manbetx官方网站手机版graphic manbetx官方网站手机版design,或编程。除非他们是你的目标客户,you don't want such people in a test because they can't stay within theirrole as用户 .他们总是必须critics也,and comment on how your manbetx官方网站手机版design compares with their pet theories on what makes a good website.可用性测试的全部思想是观察客户如何使用您的界面,not to hear them speculate on how other people might use it.

在这种情况下,尽管我们尽了最大努力筛选,one test participant turned out to be just such a critic.Although she met all of our qualification criteria,会议结束时,人们发现她的室友是雅虎的营销经理。She had become a Web insider by osmosis.

一般来说,公司镇的问题是当地人对该行业及其产品了解得太多.他们对行业八卦也很感兴趣,and might actually read arcane PR announcements that average customers would never notice.

因为这些差异,locals have a much easier time using your website than people in other cities.To get a realistic impression of the user experience for 95% of your customers,you have to在不受行业主导的地方进行测试.

Another case where test location matters is forinternational use,这显然只能通过在多个国家进行测试来研究。

为了企业内部网,通常最好在公司总部和现场或分支机构测试设计。manbetx官方网站手机版非总部地点的员工经常对公司活动有不同程度的了解,他们也可能使用不同的应用程序或强调不同的特性。此外,including people outside HQ is a sound political move for the intranet team's usability effort because it makes the intranet seem less like something imposed from above.

Finally,一些产品只是没有使用在某些地方(或使用非常不同)。例如,在佛罗里达州,你不应该测试一个网站来销售特别强大的家庭供暖系统,大多数人对高端加热器没有经验。Similarly,you shouldn't test a tourist site in the city it's promoting,因为它的目标是来自其他地方的旅行者。

尽管有这些例外,一般规则仍然很清楚:可用性发现通常是相同的,不管你在哪里测试。所以,节省你的旅行预算,在一个城市里学习。如果你不相信我,you can always test your next manbetx官方网站手机版design version in a different location and see if the change in venue generates any new findings.机会是,it won't.