17Nov 2015

The Top 5 Usability Myths

User experience is something that every website and mobile application is trying to target. With the high level of competition, it is paramount for every e-commerce company to make its user experience better than the others. A lot of research and development is carried out by all the companies as to what appeals to the users and how can it be achieved. What comes out as a result is the simplicity of the design which is free from all sorts of clutter and unnecessary stuffs on the web page or the application. It is therefore compulsory for every mobile ecommerce app and website to provide a UX, which makes e-commerce and other websites a delightful experience.

  • Usability of a website can be enhanced by fine tuning several features including the appearance, navigation and others.
  • Many people are still confused about the term usability and often are not able to distinguish it from the simplicity of the website.
  • Also, there are several myths which need to be debunked about the usability of a website or a mobile application.

Usability is a misconstrued term and many take it a merely simplicity of design which makes using the web or mobile application easier. User Experience takes into account a lot of factors like accessibility, information architecture, user interface and usability. Usability is therefore an important part of making the UX easier and more interactive to the users. It is all about the interaction between the humans and the computer in the form of an application. The simpler it is friendlier it will seem to the users. However, the simplicity must not affect the features that the applications offer. A designer has the ability to control the elements that comprise the UX and by doing so, the requirements of the users are met. There are several myths surrounding the usability factor of the web application or mobile application.

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Some of the usability myths that need to be addressed

Usability Makes Things Easy

Usability is certainly not about making everything seem easy. It is much more than that or may be entirely different. The primary benefits which are brought about by usability are the effectiveness of the system and efficiency, which leads on to the satisfaction of the end users which is the ultimate goal. We measure the efficiency of the system by making the users perform all the task with ease, swiftness and smoothness. An efficient system will have it and an inefficient system will not. Ensue that users perform the intended task with the desired speed and can execute the desired command. The technology that the website or the application is using must be simplified to an extent that users do not face any problems in using it. The biggest challenge, however, is not compromising on the features of the system and also keeps things simple. Only an experienced and seasoned UX developer has the potential to achieve it.

Usability Is Expensive

Achieving the right amount of Usability takes time and resources, but the money that you pump into it is worth the investment. It may seem expensive on the face of it, but it will only bring you more users which will recover the cost of achieving the desired usability. Everything comes at a price, but the price that you will pay for enhancing the usability of the application is worth and will benefit you in the long run. Hence, to say that Usability is expensive is wrong considering the value proposition.

Usability Is Inquiring From Users Their Preference

It is true that usability is human centric, but asking the requirements from a handful of users and using them to create an application is not right. Views of a handful of users cannot be a mirror of all the users. It is good to ask the users about their preferences, but it should be from a wide and diverse audience so that correct information may be gathered. These requirements must be incorporated in the application, but must not be followed blindly as the users’ preferences change very quickly.

Usability Must Look Nice

The priorities must be clear and not mixed. Whether you are vying for aesthetic beauty or usability must be clear from the beginning. It is a myth that the usability must always look nice. Instead, the primary goal of usability is efficiency, and all other parameters such as beauty and appearance comes later. The role of aesthetic value is secondary and comes only after it has been established that the product is usable. Even the users understand that beauty only pleases the eyes, but what is more important is the usability.

Usability Can’t Be Measured

Usability can obviously be measured, but after we understand that what makes an application usable. The two parameters which have been discussed since the beginning of the article are efficiency and effectiveness. If you are able to measure the efficiency and effectiveness, you can very well measure usability. The efficiency of the application is measured in terms of the speed with the application opens and performs the functions. Its effectiveness can be measured in terms of the customer it is able to draw and retain. If both the parameters are met, the end product is usable. Hence, this myth must also be busted that usability cannot be measured.

Conclusion

You must be aware of the difference between a luxury product and a usability product. If the difference is clear in your mind, you will be able to differentiate between changes that are supposed to make and changes that are not required. In case of usability, the changes that you bring about in the application is not just meant to enhance the beauty of the design, but to accomplish a larger purpose of making the UX of the applications more usable for the users. The myths that have been discussed here is not the complete list, but some of the common ones which are prevalent. These myths need to be bunked as soon as possible so as to deliver the desired user experience and enhance the usability.

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