Orphans is a family run agency based in Herefordshire, originally established as a printing press back in 1873. The dynamic agency has evolved to meet modern demands and provides a full agency offering of web, design and print.
We were pleased to be approached by Helen Bowden, Director at Orphans
, to work with them in providing an additional level of insight for their client, Visit Herefordshire
. The Orphans
team are extremely engaged with quantitative data provided through Google Analytics, but wanted support with gathering qualitative data through user testing.
This was a great opportunity to support an informed, experienced agency team with our usability research in order to deepen Orphans
’ service to their client.
The briefing process
Our process commenced with a fact finding meeting with the Orphans
team, where we could establish the brief and understand the goals Orphans
had for the website and their client, and discuss what we could provide via user research.
Orphans provided very clear target audience demographic information, which enabled us to commission People for Research
to source participants accurately matching the type of person that the Visit Herefordshire
website aims to attract.
The participants recruited by People for Research
were a spot-on match, falling perfectly into the user groups identified by Orphans
. This highlights the importance of knowing your target audience groups - because the better suited for your target audience they are, the higher the quality of insight they will provide, which will generate stronger results for your conversion goals.
In-person testing on mobile
we identified that users predominantly used the Visit Herefordshire
site on mobile, and that was the platform that Orphans
needed more insight on.
With that in mind we produced a script designed to task users with having free range on the website with the goal of constructing a basic itinerary for a short break in Herefordshire.
In order to gather authentic behaviours and brand impressions from the participants we wanted their research to begin how they would naturally do this at home, so we followed them from their initial web searches rather than placing them on the Visit Herefordshire
site from the start.
Some website features work brilliantly on desktop - but that doesn't always mean they transfer well to mobile! The smaller dimensions can have unforeseen effects on how users interact with your site, which was an important part of this project's discovery.
Lab facilities with Covid precautions in place
We ran the user testing in our u.exe testing lab
based in Exeter. Using their preferred mobile platform, whether iphone or Android, participants could research events, activities and places to stay on the Visit Herefordshire
site to create their short break itinerary comfortably in our testing room.
Keeping our Covid precautions
in place meant that all parties could see that safety is taken seriously at u.exe.
Project debrief with the agency team
For a full discussion and debrief on the project following completion of user testing, at u.exe we make sure to have a meeting with the client team where we go through our full report and recommendations, point by point.
This ensures that as well as our bespoke report of findings, specific actionable recommendations for improvements based on the user insights, and provision of all user test recordings for the client to keep, we can fully discuss the findings with the client.
Constructive discussion - and always find the positives!
It’s never possible to predict what will surface in user tests. When reporting to our clients we like to make sure that we highlight the positive insights too. We know that as well as wanting to find out the areas for improvement, our clients also want to know the positives that were identified by participants!
We understand that websites are not produced in isolation and have background context which needs to be taken into consideration, so it is important to us at u.exe to give a fully rounded representation of user test findings and recommendations.Iterative process
Orphans are committed to ongoing user engagement improvement on the Visit Herefordshire
website and we look forward to supporting them with this.