Now that you’ve completed your customer’s usability test, and performed all the analysis and found all the problems, it’s time to let your customer know what to fix. This part is a lot harder than it seems like it ought to be. You feel like you have enough to give your customer a 50 page treatise on why to fix everything they need to fix. Go ahead and write that paper; and then file it for future reference.
What you want to accomplish from all the work you’ve done is to actually affect some positive changes in your customer’s website. If you provide a list of 50 items they need to fix, they’ll have no idea where to start and will be overwhelmed at both the scope, and the potential cost. Aside from that, you’ll leave your customer feeling demoralized and deflated over what they may have believed was a quality product.
Use the following tips for providing good, useful feedback to your customer:
- Start with the positives – make sure to introduce your recommendations by describing the things that worked well.
- Provide some easy wins – give your customer two or three items to fix that are easy and conspicuous.
- Limit the big fixes to the really important ones – make sure the complex fixes are manageable in number; you can always go back later to retest and provide additional recommendations. Also remember, these big fixes may have a ripple effect that cause other things to work better. Every customer is different, but I try to limit this to 5 issues, in most cases.
- Finish with the positives – reiterate what you started with. Make sure to remind your customer of all the things that worked well, as motivation to bring the rest of the items into the positive fold.
Remember, you’re not here to criticize your customer, you’re here to help them improve their website. The balance between positive and negative reinforcement is a delicate one, so make sure to keep you recommendations motivational.