User Engagement

World Usability Day 2012 – Making Life Easier Through User Experience

Yesterday was World Usability Day. Nearly 100 events in 30 countries worldwide took place, featuring key speakers and notable figures in the UX community who lectured on topics related to user experience, design and Usability of Financial Systems, which was this year’s theme. The iridize team had to pass on attending events and we had to content ourselves with stalking Live Tweeters from Boston and Dubai.


WUD’s tagline is “Making life easy” and in the promo video, John Hockenberry relates to the essential need for making things more usable and universally accessible and points out that the opposite of usability is useless.


He makes a good point, of course. The basic human desire to improve life is deeply rooted in a constant attempt to make things easier, simpler, more efficient. Why not use telephones instead of Carrier Pigeons? Why keep working the poor horses for a third of the profit from crops if you can use a tractor? And so, a straight line is drawn from the Agricultural Revolution through the Industrial Revolution to reading emails on your phone and to an entire industry dedicated to mobile interfaces and the online navigation experience. Advancement, technology and striving to better one’s life have always been intertwined.


Which is why bringing together all that insight, intuition and experience on user experience and usability design in WUD is so important. Not only for UX professionals, UX Designers and UX Architects but also for users, end users and customers seeking to better their interaction with products and technology worldwide. It is through these meetings of minds and exchanging of ideas that we keep moving forward, one outreaching innovation at a time.

Abandonment Issues: Minimize Cart Abandonment Rates

If you are the owner of an online SMB (or an SMB that provides eCommerce services), like us – you probably spend a substantial amount of time and energy considering your customers. More to the point, you work hard to improve online customer experience. This, as we at Iridize discovered through comprehensive research,  is a challenge bordering on rocket science. There are myriad factors to be taken into account in order to keep a user engaged until the end of the process.


The statistics on average shopping cart abandonment are through the roof: 65.23% of potential online shoppers abandon their shopping cart at various stages of the process. 11% of them do so because of complex checkout processes, 12% feel too much information is required of them and for 22% of your would-be customers, the shipping prices were unclear (scroll down for the invesp infographic).


That’s where we come in: our walkthrough tools can help simplify your checkout process considerably. How? Through guiding the user safely and accurately through the checkout process, leaving no room for error, helping to eliminate user frustration. We do this with a series of tooltips that create a site tour, pointing to screen elements and using simple, engaging language. Want to check it out? Get a demo.


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How iridize can help you improve user experience and engagement

When customers try to use your service and fail, they might go and look for the instructions, double check that everything is in order, and try again and again until they finally succeed.

Research into the psychology of failure, however, has shown that given the option, many will choose to opt out.

In a classical experiment1, individuals were given a task which was unsolvable. They had to try it and experience failure, much like the lay user trying to carry out a complicated task on a website. Afterwards, they were given another, much easier task, of deciphering anagrams. Half of them had the option to opt out, and not complete the task, and the others just had to complete it. Both of these were measured against control subjects who did not experience failure.

The results were clear: those that had to finish the task, no matter what, performed as well as controls. They had to do the task, no matter what, and they did it. On the other hand, many of those who had a chance to opt-out, did, and even those who did not opt-out, performed much worse than controls.

The lesson from this study is clear: individuals who experience failure will tend to opt out so as not to experience it again.

You want the users to have a positive, constructive experience with your SaaS application or website from the moment they enter.

Help your users succeed – Iridize!

1. Miller, A. Performance impairment after failure: Mechanism and sex differences. Journal of Educational Psychology 78, 486–491 (1986).

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