Usability Audit

1 minute read

Background

A few years ago I was asked to do a usability audit for creditunion.ie. Having completed the audit, I was subsequently asked if I would be available to redesign the site. However, I had just accepted a permanent position by then so was unable to do so.

The organisation has since redesigned their site and I was happy to see that a lot of my proposed solutions were implemented. Below you'll find further detail on my method, findings and solutions.

Before and after the site's redesign. The image on the left is an example I showed of problems it had with mobile display.

What I did

Process

1. Conducted a heuristic evaluation of the entire website.

I followed Jakob Neilsen's heuristic evalution guidelines in order to ensure comprehensive coverage of the website's usability problems.

Based on these guidelines, I broke down the problems and solutions into 7 usability aspects which can be seen below.

I made the titles of each usability aspect understandable to anyone by avoiding any design/tech. jargon. The audit also covered practical areas associated with the usability of a site such as performance.

Usability Aspects

  • settingsFeatures & Functionality
  • navigationNavigation
  • searchSearch
  • inputForms
  • text_formatText and content
  • helpHelp
  • equalizerPerformance

2. Identified usability issues

With this in place I researched the website in full both across different browsers and devices using Browserstack - a cross browser emulator that allowed me to see how the site looked on different browsers and operating systems. Its the annoying little overlay you see on some of the "before" screenshots in this piece.

Please note: This is a work in progress. Better to view this section on a larger device!
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In the "forms" usability category, I had commented that some were too long, in a non linear format and that they didn't always provide what the user wanted. Above is a screenshot of the Contact page when the audit was conducted. Practical contact info did not feature until you scrolled to the bottom of the page.

3. Proposed solutions to the problems identified

I then proposed solutions to whatever problems were associated with such usability aspects.

Below you'll see some of the problems I identified, solutions proposed and visual examples of how these solutions were implemented.

Please note: This is a work in progress. Better to view this section on a larger device!
process image

The redesigned "Contact" page that was shown earlier. Unnecessary form fields were removed and the user is immediately presented with practical contact information.

process image

An example of the "Search" Usability Aspect covered, problems identified and solution implemented.

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Another example from the "Search" Usability aspect. Previously users had been left at a dead end (404 page) if they didn't type in the exact search criterion.

Results