International Search Summit – web usability

Shari Thurow: Usability – Its Importance and Application to both SEO and SEM

  • Usability – a website can be used to achieve specific goals.Often people have the perception a website works because Clients say “they like it” or “I think it works fine”
  • Often there are problems related to effectiveness – can users achieve what they need to ?
  • Ease of learning
  • Recognition rather than recall
  • Error prevention & Satisfaction all fundamental parameters requiring attention and measurement to benchmark website performance.
  • Search Usability – ease with which users find information on a website.
  • People say a lot about what they want with their keywords – more “pogo sticking” there is less likely are conversions …
  • Balance between business goals and users goals – that’s web usability.
  • Only when you talk to users you can identify their motivations
  • Human-centered design – personas, make believe people, a tool to get the people on the web page.
  • Persona must be specific, name and visual image, hypothetical, unique for each project
  • Prototypes for different sites (in different languages) look very different in different languages – layouts can change significantly.
  • Users have one of 3 intentions: navigational, transactional, informational
  • Realistic expectations about Search engine positioning is fundamental – don’t design for search engines, but for people who use search engines.
  • For navigational searches the URL is very important – home pages and the about pages are of this type
  • For informational queries, URLs are not so important, rather the Title and descriptions
  • A powerful Search marketing campaign cannot forget the user – need to know why people are searching
  • How + Why = long term ROI

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