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  • conversion rates The results were interesting and in some cases surprising In a time when businesses have reduced marketing budgets but increased sales targets it was shocking to learn that 5 of companies and 10 of suppliers say they or their clients still do not track conversion rates at all With the availability of free tools such as Google Analytics taking time to understand how your business is performing should surely be at the top of any agenda Improving conversion means reducing your business cost per sale and increasing Return on Investment In short it can mean the difference between success and failure Why then is investment in this area falling short Lack of budget and lack of resources were noted as being the biggest barriers to improving conversion rates Analysis shows that if these companies had someone directly responsible for conversion they were more than twice as likely to have seen improved conversion over the last year RedEye suggest the issue is that improving conversion is hard But so is telling your Management Team that your latest campaign has bombed and you won t hit your quarterly targets A structured approach to testing is essential but with 17 of the companies surveyed claiming they do not carry out any testing at all on their website and a further 57 carrying out 5 or less tests a month it s no wonder 39 claimed they were dissatisfied with their conversion rates The report noted that Improving conversion is a continuous process There is no magic bullet I wholeheartedly agree but just firing the gun a few times would help So many companies are doing so little to improve conversion 0 0 0 0 Nicky Harrison I am the Client Services Director at Foolproof leading a brilliant team of Account Directors

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/report-econsultancy-on-conversion/ (2016-02-14)
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  • where context of use directly impacts on the user experience consider these top tips when simulating context of use in the lab Let users experience the whole experience Don t force users down one single path Instead allow users to explore the entirety of a system or site even if parts are less developed Consider physical factors think about the physical set up e g the height distance angle and physical restrictions of the device interface that will be used Consider sensory factors which may distract the user from the task at hand and think about which of these can be brought into the lab Consider factors which may normally enhance an experience for example offer drinks and snacks when testing something designed to be used by a group of friends on a Friday night Examples of in lab set ups We recently worked with a major transport operator to design a new interface for their ticketing system Noise lighting and signage were all important context of use factors But crucially time was one of the most important factors to consider If you ve ever been stuck in a queue trying to buy a ticket in a hurry you know how pressured that growing queue makes you feel To re create this pressure we asked users to complete individual tasks at the kiosk whilst being timed and closely watched by a moderator Respondents weren t allowed to receive any help and were moved swiftly onto the next task if they took too long In another project we looked at a mobile contactless payment system for supermarkets where auditory feedback was fundamental to using the system We set up a supermarket style environment within the lab ensuring the system was placed at a realistic height and distance from the user Users

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/how-to-simulate-context-of-use-in-lab/ (2016-02-14)
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  • build a picture of their wedding Online adverts in this context can provide a relevant mood board of inspiration that gets users excited about using a site In this instance advertising played an important role in helping users to find and filter their options and make sense of chaotic and haphazard cottage industry supplier networks As wedding plans progressed and preparation tasks became more difficult and mundane advertising proved effective in maintaining momentum interest and excitement Advertising doesn t always have to negatively impact on the user experience When adverts are timely relevant and tailored to the user they can contribute to a great user experience Adverts and the user experience top tips If you work in weddings or a similar environment where advertising has a positive impact on the user experience consider these pieces of design advice Carefully position advertising to ensure it doesn t dominate your site or fall victim to banner blindness and go unnoticed e g where possible avoid overly large banner ads Make clear the difference between editorial content and advertising by visually separating them The visual treatment of the advert should not take priority over key content on the site Make advertising contextual Associate it with the task users are doing to support the user journey and provide a richer user experience e g If a user is creating a seating plan for their wedding advertise chair covers etc Make calls to action clear and engaging make obvious what the offer benefit is and what kind of content they will see next Ultimately give users confidence in what will happen when they click on an ad Where possible relate adverts to the brand to reassure users they are in the right place Make advertising inspirational suprising informative relevant and above all useful to the

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/when-lots-of-advertising-is-ok/ (2016-02-14)
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  • Thinking | Foolproof
    Wight Festival 100 of Festival goers interviewed said they would use prepaid wristbands to pay for items at other festivals and events Tags Mobile smart devices Financial services Q A from Future of Digital Marketing By Peter Ballard 15 Jun 2011 We attended the Future of Digital Marketing event and asked brands about their UX design challenges This ranged from questions on mobile video and the role of Facebook in research Tags Foolproof and Flow in top 20 agencies By Peter Ballard 01 Jun 2011 We were delighted to be in the top 20 in Design Week s top 100 agency list for 2011 We also topped the Growth in fee income on percentage change and ranked number 4 in the Market Share Digital Design list Tags Foolproof news RIP PPI By Peter Ballard 19 May 2011 As banks decide not to fight PPI claims we reflect on our own research into reported in our Online Shopping Study on Personal Loans back in 2005 The lesson here is that user research will tell you something needs fixing long before the courts or the regulator does Tags Financial services Time for search engines to step up By Peter Ballard 11 Apr 2011 There s a lot of very good published research on the subject of human decision making and especially the mess we appear to get ourselves in when faced with too much choice The fear of making a bad decision and the stress this creates leaves the question when is a search engine going to be able to do this job for me Tags Consumer behaviour Travel leisure It s all good By Peter Ballard 22 Mar 2011 Allowing people to choose to post their genuinely positive experiences on Facebook and Twitter is a great way to turn satisfied customers into powerful brand advocates But be careful of linking promotional offers to those postings Tags Financial services Social media My other job is an advertising manager By Peter Ballard 07 Feb 2011 The introduction of Facebook Deals challenges the thinking and approach of traditional advertising and could transform location based marketing forever Tags Brand marketing Social media Foolproof and Flow get together By Peter Ballard 13 Jan 2011 We ve joined forces with Flow Interactive creating Europe s largest specialist UX agency This places the combined business within the top 50 UK digital agencies based on the recent 2010 New Media Age league table Tags Foolproof news Grow your UX skillset By Peter Ballard 09 Nov 2010 Top tips on the skills you need to develop in order to work in user experience Creating a portfolio gaining work experience using life experiences and paying attention to detail are just a few of the tips discussed that will help you stand out in your application Tags UX jobs skills The changing banking landscape By Peter Ballard 22 Jul 2010 Thanks to everyone who attended our recent breakfast briefing with Bank 2 0 author Brett King If you missed it here s

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/?page=1&author=2530 (2016-02-14)
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  • The UX challenges
    all is that it s all pay to win that with enough money you can go into a free to play and dominate And in some games that s true some guy can go and buy a 400 sword in a Chinese MMO run around and one hit kill everyone He s having a blast but no one else is A couple of weeks before E3 Wargaming announced a change of policy to combat this stigma We re spearheading what we call free to win and the core tenet of free to win is that you remove all possibilities for players to purchase advantage In World of Tanks we have things like gold rounds which have slightly better armour penetration So we ve made it so that anyone can purchase them with credits which are the main currency earned in game just through regular play We then turned the real world money transactions into things like camouflage skins add ons for your tank premium tanks all of which give you no advantage in combat The importance of the first time experience The second major challenge when using free to play is the first time user experience Because players haven t invested any time or money up front their tolerance for poor games is very low and they can quit with no real cost This means that getting the UX right is even more important than a game which relies on a more traditional business model Cook explained their attitude towards UX We listen to player feedback and incorporate that into the game itself I think we do a really good job of putting stuff into content updates that the community ask for directly It s all about listening to the player I know a lot of people say that the

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/the-ux-challenges-of-free-to-play-games/ (2016-02-14)
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  • course the games each system will have will be one of the main factors in anyone s purchase decision and here the results were inconclusive While Microsoft had more exclusive titles and arguably the better ones many such as Dead Rising 3 featured little innovation This caution was evident throughout the show with many publishers sticking to conservative game designs and iterating existing series The most innovative big budget titles were showcased by Ubisoft with Watch Dogs and The Division the most impressive games of the show Independently produced games like many of those on the App Store were also a hot topic at E3 with Microsoft and Sony s policies starkly different While the former has done little to support these developers the latter is actively courting them The consequence of this will only materialise in the long term but that s a topic for another upcoming blog post The battle for the living room using gamers as a Trojan horse Both consoles will be competing for people s time for jobs to be done that centre around entertainment With powerful hardware and high price points both Sony and Microsoft are approaching the problem by treating gamers like a Trojan horse If gamers buy their consoles and put them in their living rooms then perhaps other people in those households will start using them making them a one stop shop for entertainment Multiple users will magnify the reach of each console creating huge value even if they sell the same number of devices as the current generation both 77 million units But whether you should communicate this to the market is another matter The answer you probably shouldn t Microsoft has been marketing the Xbox One as an all in one entertainment system emphasising TV movies and Skype calls This seems logical since over 50 of Xbox 360 usage is not gaming related but this confuses those who use consoles and those that buy them Gamers the primary decision makers for console purchases do not care about the other things you can do with a console they care about the games This partly explains Sony s marketing strategy which has focused almost entirely on gaming With a console that is less expensive less restrictive and just as powerful as Microsoft s they hold a significant advantage going into the Christmas launch window The threat on the horizon a black box from Cupertino The fight is not over though as console cycles are years long and the sternest challenges are yet to come The biggest threat to the industry lies in plain sight the Apple TV Even as a self described hobby product with few features beyond streaming iTunes and Netflix content Apple has sold 13 million units But when they inevitably open the system up to third party developers and broaden its input methods it could be as thriving a games development platform as the iPhone and iPad That should worry console manufacturers While the hardware for a sub

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/next-gen-gaming-kicks-off-at-e3-2013/ (2016-02-14)
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  • away so you need to invest time and effort in fixing this and above all getting the right fix in place that integrates smoothly into the web experience His tips for listeners echoed those our own Meriel suggested in her blog EU cookie directive and your users 1 Check your privacy policy is it up to date clear easy to read and understand 2 Make sure you link to the privacy policies of any third parties using cookies on your website 3 Also think about what you will do with existing cookies from your website i e those people who have already visited your site Are you going to wipe the slate clean and start again or retrospectively ask for their consent 4 Seriously consider obtaining global consent for all the cookies on your website including those from third parties rather than gaining consent for these individually He also urged delegates not to wait for a solution to fall into their laps The browser manufacturers may fix this for us but you will never be able to guarantee that every visitor to your site is using the correct browser You also can t rely on your suppliers to fix this because as the site owner this is your responsibility Plus you don t want every supplier asking for consent on your website just imagine the user experience He also warned against using the loopholes If these do exist you can t guarantee they will remain open forever so you could find yourself getting caught out His conclusion Get your house in order now The directive came into being in May and gave a year s grace for companies to put solutions in place but that time is quickly running out Useful resources An easy to understand introduction to the Cookie

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/eu-cookie-directive-and-what-it-means-to-you/ (2016-02-14)
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  • years ago few digital agencies had any user experience offering so it should seem like progress that today the majority of agencies make the vocabulary of UX central to their pitch and their proposition Or perhaps not As clients increasingly talk about user experience outcomes within their design briefs agencies have responded by declaring themselves to be inherently user centric They incorporate design tools such as personas and user journeys in their design process and talk a lot about customers to the client but in our experience they still neglect to actually speak with customers in any meaningful way The design process is still very much the domain of the Creative Director and while customers are sometimes roped in for usability testing they certainly don t have an invitation to take part in shaping the design strategy or contributing to the formulation of digital products and services The time has come for clients to exercise some due diligence in their agency partnerships and look for evidence of real collaboration with customers within the design process Design decisions based on guesswork bring unnecessary risk into the creative process And at the moment it s the clients who take the consequences when these guesses are wrong Pitches are a uniquely bad way of finding a good design agency but they remain a very good way of finding a bad design agency The traditional pitch process is flawed because it requires agencies to begin the process of making decisions about creative ideas and complex interactions in the absence of insight and understanding The agency is forced to come up with ideas and visualisations which are focused on impressing the client panel and attracting positive ratings on the score card In effect the design process has already begun but without the participation of the most important actor the customer The client and agency are often already bought into a particular strategic or creative direction before real insights can be gathered or the problem space fully explored The result is a high risk process in which success can only be hoped for rather than expected The old adage Never run pitch work is a wise one But invariably budget and time constraints mean that exactly the opposite happens NPS is a blunt tool At face value Net Promoter Score NPS seems like a good measure of customer sentiment towards your brand giving a picture of how well you are fuelling advocacy and positive customer perceptions about how you re doing in the market It s a simple and comforting measure But while NPS is good at telling a company what is happening it s less good at telling a company why What influences advocacy is subtle and NPS lacks the subtlety to help inform experimentation and optimisation of customer experience In most companies NPS is such a broad measure that it s open to interpretation by different managers in different ways The result Decoding NPS and making recommendations for change become a guessing game NPS

    Original URL path: http://www.foolproof.co.uk/thinking/10-things-still-to-fix-in-experience-design/ (2016-02-14)
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