UX TEAM vrs Marketing DPT – round 1

Problem: the marketing dept what to make some changes to the home page and navigation of a site we look after – they don’t want to go through the design team they don’t want us to question them – they think they don’t need the UX value we bring!

So I sent this wee email to the team who will meet with them to help them start thinking about how to show the client(more marketing dept) we do bring value and we don’t just harp on for the sake of it- we care, and we know stuff thats based in research and experience.

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So they want to make random drastic changes – based in marketing know how… Argh!!! Where’s the analytics back up when you need it…
Why do they even want to make the change?  – Is it a problem that can be solved in a better way?
Usability testing is the way and the light… they could even do some guerrilla testing themselves with Silverback!

But if they still won’t listen and you’ve got to flex your big fat I know stuff, I’m a UX profes muscles.. check out some of this:

  1. People read from left to right and the The f-shaped reading pattern – check yourself before you wreck yourself bitches! http://www.useit.com/alertbox/reading_pattern.html – although the pictures and examples used are in reference to reading content not looking at headers.. http://www.surl.org/usabilitynews/71/eye_tracking.asp this is an interesting article it shows that people look at pictures and feature content first (after the logo to identify where they are) and for the longest.. check out the pictures that show what order people’s eyes travel around the page
  2. Holy crap! Big changes suck!
    Look at the example of ebay –they didn’t want to shock their users with a sudden background change b/c then they’d get mucho negative feedback – so they did it like 1 hexshade a day for about a month (maybe –  I heard a story from someone who heard it from someone who worked on the project)..  Check out this sweet article on the art of the soft and subtle changes and the death of the relaunch http://www.uie.com/articles/death_of_relaunch/
  3. But watch out for random incremental change  –  it needs thought and strategy otherwise you end up with a big fat mess – Yucky Bunny!
    (Well according to user testing reports released by Nielson)
    “Summary:
    Users hate change, so it’s usually best to stay with a familiar design and evolve it gradually. In the long run, however, incrementalism eventually destroys cohesiveness, calling for a new UI architecture.”
    http://www.useit.com/alertbox/familiar-design.html
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