Discussion around Forrester Customer Experience Failures (Episod 1)

Forrester has created a quality indicator with which to visualize user experiences on the web throughout the world (A special word of thanks to Bruce and his team! I would strongly advise you to follow their work). 

I would like to share my vision on the Forrester indicator with you in 7 posts on this blog. Here we go…

Customer Experience Failures

In order to generate an efficient task flow, you need to think beyond site development. First, you have to determine the real tasks users will want to do on the site. Secondly, you have to understand which kind of behaviours these tasks will demand from users who want to reach their objectives. 

An example: “I want to find a cordless phone with an answering machine, to replace my phone that broke down. 

After I have found a site that can provide an answer to my question, let’s say the Belgacom site, the scenario will cause different behaviours that will occur one after the other:

  1. discover the interface,
  2. look for the section containing cordless telephone devices,
  3. discover the product offer,

Each kind of behaviour calls upon the use of the appropriate memory systems.

Let’s take a closer look at the first type of behaviour: look for the section with cordless phones.

  1. The brain will use the visual system to look for interface elements that could provide the right answer. 
  2. The semantic memory will be used to understand the meaning of the words found in the navigation. 
  3. The working memory will decide whether the read word corresponds to the question at hand. 

All this will occur in a couple of milliseconds, and mainly at a non-conscious level.

When an expert in behavioural sciences will build a customer track, he will make decisions based on these memory systems in order to maximize the success of the customer track. His decisions are based on objective elements and rely on his knowledge and the appropriate tools. 

Netway’s expertise and tools allow our customers to successfully complete a minimum of 75% of tasks. I want to mention these numbers because they are the exact opposite of the Forrester results. Now, I wonder why… 

No, Forrester didn’t make a mistake. That would be too easy an explanation ☺. They work with experts. But it appears a thorough knowledge of the perceptive cognitive system is indispensable when it comes to building efficient interfaces. Limiting oneself to working with rules and guidelines just won’t do the trick. 

I was delighted to read the following statement on Muriel’s blog: “I voluntarily omit the word “rules” because I think there is no such thing as a “universal recipe” or “the behaviour of surfers behind a screen”… 

This is another proof there are more and more people who believe that an efficient interface can only be built based on the requirements and the behaviour of users. Objects are there to serve the users and not the other way around. 

Thanks Bruce, Muriel and all the others who work on the next step in the user experience. 

Have a nice week…

Simplifyinginterfaces-Keypoints : Discussion around Forrester Customer Experience Failures (Episode 1)