Weblog usability followup

In the previous “Mullet-style blog layout and complete archive page” we had a look on the Mullet-style blog page that makes more content available on the fronpage, and also argued for replacing monthly archives with a single archive page.Danish “brugervenligeblogs.dk” pointed me to a research document from July 2005: Blog Mainstream Market Penetration Likely Limited By Basic Usability Issues by Catalyst Group Design. The 19 page usability report is available as PDF (119KB).

Highlights of the study include:

  • No participant understood the mechanisms associated with RSS/subscribing to a blog – not even the minority familiar with the term “RSS.”
  • Few participants even recognized that they were on an actual blog – and once they did, had a very different reaction to the information presented.
  • A minority of participants understood how to navigate within the blog itself – with most being confused by areas for recent posts, categories, trackbacks and even the comments and archives functions.

I do not know of this company (which is completely normal, as I’m here in Denmark), but from their weblog I see that they did work for CNN Money.

The report is published 3 months before Jakob Nielsen focused on weblog usability mistakes in his Alertbox from October 17, 2005. In my opinion, Nielsen’s points are more or less a repetition of what NOT to do on websites, on intranets, etc. Not much new here, but I consede that we also make some of the mistakes here on justaddwater.dk

For instance, we do not have fotos of Thomas and I on this weblog, but to please the grumpy crowd here’s one of me and Jakob Nielsen:


Jesper Rønn-Jensen and Jakob Nielsen, Usability Week, Copenhagen, 2004

Also mentioned by “brugervenligeblogs.dk” is “10 Ways to Increase Blog Usability“, with some very useful tips (some overlapping the other two mentioned).

Thomas and I have plans to make small adjustments to this blog, and we’ll definately consider these advice.

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2 Responses to “Weblog usability followup”

  1. justaddwater.dk | Blog Usability Improvements Says:

    […] Note: We have previously blogged about topics related to this in Mullet-style blog layout and complete archive page and Weblog usability followup. […]

  2. justaddwater.dk | Mullet Layout: A user-friendly front page Says:

    […] Weblog usability followup […]