Designing to delight the information seeker

Oct 2009: User Interface 14

Finding information is not the user’s goal. It’s a means to an end. You need to look at what they desire.

Maybe they desire to locate a fact to prove a point. Perhaps buy a product based on important criterion, or locate the best deal. Maybe they desire to compare features before they make a decision, or keep an eye on current events. Or, maybe they just desire to re-read something they saw on an earlier visit.

Each of these information-seeking desires demands a very different approach to the information architecture, the information design, and the page layout. Donna Spencer will show you the key features of each behavior and what you need to include in the design, with both good and bad examples of each. You’ll go away with skills that take your users beyond just finding the information, helping them to use the information to achieve their goals.