Usability analysis

The "usability" of a computer system is literally its "ease of use": how well it conveys information about its purpose and the methods available for users to achieve their goals. The term can also encompass the standards and guidelines of design for accessibility.

Usability analysis is about observing how a user interacts with a web page or computer program and using that information to make your interface as user-friendly as possible.

A user-friendly interface is one that allows users to easily, effectively and efficiently accomplish the tasks for which it was designed, and that is rated positively on opinion or emotional scales.

Conducting a usability analysis can identify problems with design, layout, copy, or technical structure. Evaluation methods include usability testing, interviews, focus groups and Think Aloud Protocol.

It is preferable to incorporate usability analysis into the design process as early as possible, to ensure that any potential problems are recognised quickly and resolved as efficiently as possible (iterative design).

Related methods include: Accessibility analysis, General website development, Human factors analysis, Interface design and Iterative design.

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