User value or clutter?

24 Aug 2008 - 5:16am
5 years ago
4 replies
251 reads
robenslin
2008

Hi Peeps,

I'm in the midst of creating a project requirements document for a B2B
exhibition website. It's early stages so nothing is final yet. One of the
requirements is a count-down feature - a clock permanently placed on the
website that counts down the days, hours and minutes to the exhibition.

I'm questioning the value (to the website users) of having a permanent
count-down clock on the website? Has anyone had any similar
experiences/dilemas before?

Thanks,

Rob
[IxDA list newbie]

----
Rob Enslin

Comments

26 Aug 2008 - 5:20pm
Steve Baty
2009

Rob,

The motogp.com site utilises this feature to indicate when the next race
will commence (first practice session, actually). Given that races are
sometimes on consecutive weeks, and sometimes three or four weeks apart,
it's useful to have the countdown.

However, the audience of the motogp.com site is (going out on a limb here)
very different to your exhibition site. At this stage I'd treat the
countdown as an idea, not a requirement. Is there any research at this stage
to back up the need for the countdown? Are potential exhibition visitors
missing out because they forgot it was on "this week"? Is there some use
case or scenario that indicates the need? If not, then mark it for testing
with users when you get a chance and see what they say.

Regards
Steve

2008/8/24 Rob Enslin <robenslin at gmail.com>

> Hi Peeps,
>
> I'm in the midst of creating a project requirements document for a B2B
> exhibition website. It's early stages so nothing is final yet. One of the
> requirements is a count-down feature - a clock permanently placed on the
> website that counts down the days, hours and minutes to the exhibition.
>
> I'm questioning the value (to the website users) of having a permanent
> count-down clock on the website? Has anyone had any similar
> experiences/dilemas before?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Rob
> [IxDA list newbie]
>
>
> ----
> Rob Enslin
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
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>

--
----------------------------------------------
Steve 'Doc' Baty B.Sc (Maths), M.EC, MBA
Principal Consultant
Meld Consulting
M: +61 417 061 292
E: stevebaty at meld.com.au

UX Statistics: http://uxstats.blogspot.com

Member, UPA - www.upassoc.org
Member, IA Institute - www.iainstitute.org
Member, IxDA - www.ixda.org
Contributor - UXMatters - www.uxmatters.com

26 Aug 2008 - 9:16pm
Jared M. Spool
2003

On Aug 24, 2008, at 6:16 AM, Rob Enslin wrote:

> I'm questioning the value (to the website users) of having a permanent
> count-down clock on the website?

Put it in the top 15% of the home page. Nobody ever looks there. It's
the perfect place to put things you don't need your users to see. :)

Jared

Jared M. Spool
User Interface Engineering
510 Turnpike St., Suite 102, North Andover, MA 01845
e: jspool at uie.com p: +1 978 327 5561
http://uie.com Blog: http://uie.com/brainsparks

27 Aug 2008 - 6:29am
robenslin
2008

Hi Steve,

The countdown on the motogp.com site wasn't obvious - perhaps once logged in
you might see it? I'd have to agree with you treating the countdown as an
idea and not a requirement.

Is there any research at this stage to back up the need for the countdown?
>

No research has been done so the requirement is based on '*I think our
visitors would love this - looks cool!*' or '*It looks cool so lets whack it
on the site*'

Are potential exhibition visitors missing out because they forgot it was on
> "this week"?
>

No, the exhibition takes place annually. During the lead-up to the
exhibition marketing activity ramps up. Essential information like dates and
times.. etc are repeatedly communicated (through email drivers and home page
copy re-arrangements).

Is there some use case or scenario that indicates the need? If not, then
> mark it for testing with users when you get a chance and see what they say.
>

No, but it's something I've brought up repeatedly with our stakeholders.
I've only recently got the green light to do some on-site (at the
exhibition) research. I'd be interested to find out whether the website
users actually remember there being a countdown at all?

Perhaps having a countdown much closer to the event (two months out) might
be useful, but present all year round seems a bit superfluous.

Thanks,

Rob

2008/8/26 Steve Baty <stevebaty at gmail.com>

> Rob,
>
> The motogp.com site utilises this feature to indicate when the next race
> will commence (first practice session, actually). Given that races are
> sometimes on consecutive weeks, and sometimes three or four weeks apart,
> it's useful to have the countdown.
>
> However, the audience of the motogp.com site is (going out on a limb here)
> very different to your exhibition site. At this stage I'd treat the
> countdown as an idea, not a requirement. Is there any research at this stage
> to back up the need for the countdown? Are potential exhibition visitors
> missing out because they forgot it was on "this week"? Is there some use
> case or scenario that indicates the need? If not, then mark it for testing
> with users when you get a chance and see what they say.
>
> Regards
> Steve
>
> 2008/8/24 Rob Enslin <robenslin at gmail.com>
>
>> Hi Peeps,
>>
>> I'm in the midst of creating a project requirements document for a B2B
>> exhibition website. It's early stages so nothing is final yet. One of the
>> requirements is a count-down feature - a clock permanently placed on the
>> website that counts down the days, hours and minutes to the exhibition.
>>
>> I'm questioning the value (to the website users) of having a permanent
>> count-down clock on the website? Has anyone had any similar
>> experiences/dilemas before?
>>
>> Thanks,
>>
>> Rob
>> [IxDA list newbie]
>>
>>
>> ----
>> Rob Enslin
>> ________________________________________________________________
>> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
>> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
>> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
>> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
>> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>>
>
>
>
> --
> ----------------------------------------------
> Steve 'Doc' Baty B.Sc (Maths), M.EC, MBA
> Principal Consultant
> Meld Consulting
> M: +61 417 061 292
> E: stevebaty at meld.com.au
>
> UX Statistics: http://uxstats.blogspot.com
>
> Member, UPA - www.upassoc.org
> Member, IA Institute - www.iainstitute.org
> Member, IxDA - www.ixda.org
> Contributor - UXMatters - www.uxmatters.com
>

--
/ Rob Enslin
/ enslin.co.uk
/ twitter.com/robenslin
/ +44759 052 8890

28 Aug 2008 - 6:15pm
Jarod Tang
2007

> Is there some use case or scenario that indicates the need? If not, then
>> mark it for testing with users when you get a chance and see what they say.
>>
>
> No, but it's something I've brought up repeatedly with our stakeholders.
> I've only recently got the green light to do some on-site (at the
> exhibition) research. I'd be interested to find out whether the website
> users actually remember there being a countdown at all?
>
> Perhaps having a countdown much closer to the event (two months out) might
> be useful, but present all year round seems a bit superfluous.
>
[come up with a idea without notify the user's motivation is likely a
false risk for design ]
This hypo. need some user using/visiting style/experience
investigation which is based on your exhibition type and the user(both
the member and visitor)'s involving type, around how user relate to
your exhibition.

Cheers,
-- Jarod
--
Designing for better life style.

http://jarodtang.spaces.live.com/

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