To the front pageThe Interaction Designer's Coffee Break - Weekly postings and quarterly articles about interaction design  
  To the front pageSign inTo the frontpageSearch in GUUUI postingsAbout GUUUI  




The mobile web trouble users

A usability study by Jakob Nielsen shows that people using websites on their mobile phones suffer from old-time usability issues, such as slow download time, bloated pages, and difficulties using the browsers.

To improve usability of mobile web browsing, Jakob Nielsen recommends that big and rich sites provide different websites tailored to each type of mobile device on the market. Sites that need to serve mobile devices but can't afford building many different versions should supplement the main site with a single scaled-back mobile-optimized design, recognizing that it will serve high-end phones poorly.

The study reveals that people have problems with all kinds of mobile devices. Even the iPhone isn't perfect, though it is, as Jakob says, "the first mobile Internet device worth criticizing."


  • Mobile Web 2009 = Desktop Web 1998 Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - February 17, 2009

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Browsers (3)  Research (130) 



Speed matters

At a conference, Greg Linden heard Marissa Mayer from Google speak about how a response time delay of half a second at Google Search resulted in a traffic and revenue drop by 20%. Also, when they rolled out a lighter version of Google Maps, there was a substantial boost in traffic.

Greg Linden has experienced the same thing at In a test they found that even very small delays would result in substantial and costly drops in revenue.

Apparently, speed - in terms of milliseconds - matters.


  • Marissa Mayer at Web 2.0 Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - February 06, 2009

Permanent link Comments (0)



Download time doesn't impact on a site's usability

UIE keeps podcasting interesting interviews with Jared Spool. In this episode of the Usability Tools Podcast, Jared talks about a study that showed that a site's download time doesn't seem to impact on a site's usability. Instead, sites that are easy to use, fun and professional are perceived as being fast.

Apparently, people perceive time to take longer when they are in pain.


  • UIE Usability Tools Podcast: The Truth About Page Download Time Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - September 24, 2007

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Interviews (30)  Audio and video (48) 



Speed Up Your Site

Jennifer Alvin from Digital Web Magazine reviews Andrew King's book Speed Up Your Site: Web Site Optimization:

"Andrew King offers a variety of ways to trim the fat in common design elements, as well as tips for increasing server performance. No other book I've seen covers so many types of optimization in one place with such a thorough investigation of why the tricks work. The extensive technical explanations alone are worth the list price, and each is backed up with a step-by-step approach to making your site a speedy champion."


  • The review at Digital Web Magazine Open link in new window
  • Sample chapters at Open link in new window
  • The book at Open link in new window
  • The book at Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - August 17, 2003 - via Digital Web Magazine's newsletter

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Books (47) 



The truth about download time

When UIE did a study on how visitors perceived download time on 10 different sites over a 56 kbps modem, they found that there was no correlation between the actual download time and the perceived speed reported by the users.

Instead they found a strong correlation between perceived download time and whether users successfully completed their task, suggesting that if people can't find what they want on a site, they will regard it as a waste of time.

This suggests that download time might not be as important, as many usability experts claim.


  • The article The Truth About Download Time Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - October 10, 2002

Permanent link Comments (0)

See also: Research (130) 


Browse GUUUI postings

Methods and the design process

Prototyping and wireframing (120)  Usability testing (71)  Cost-justification and ROI (28)  User research (24)  Personas (19)  The design process (24)  Eye-tracking (14)  Card sorting (13)  Web traffic analysis (12)  Expert reviews (11)  Implementing user-centred design (9)  Site and flow diagramming (6)  Envisionments (4)  Use Cases (3) 

Design elements

Navigation (63)  Web page design (41)  Search (27)  Text (24)  Forms (30)  Links (19)  Guidelines and Standards (15)  Site design (14)  Ads (9)  Design patterns (8)  Sections (8)  Shopping Carts (9)  Error handling (7)  Home pages (9)  Help (3)  E-mails (3)  Sitemaps (2)  Personalization (1)  Print-friendly (1)  Landing pages (5) 

General aspects

E-commerce (28)  Persuasive design (23)  Visual design (20)  Information architecture (15)  Accessibility (13)  Search engines (7)  Credibility, Trust and Privacy (6)  Emotional design (10)  Simplicity vs. capability (7)  Web applications (6)  Intranets (3) 


Flash (6)  Download time (5)  Javascript (3)  URLs (3)  Browsers (3)  Web standards (2) 


Bad designs (20)  Cartoons (14)  Fun music and videos (13)  Funny tools and games (12)  Misc humor (8)  Fun with Jakob Nielsen (9)  Designs with humor (3)  Fun posters (5)  Funny 404 pages (2) 

Resource types

Research (130)  Tips and guidelines (95)  Tools (106)  Books (47)  Audio and video (48)  Interviews (30)  Cases and Examples (28)  Talks and presentations (18)  GUUUI articles (11)  Primers (14)  Online books (5)  Posters (5)  Glossaries (3)  People and organisations (3) 

Information sources

Blogs (12)  Websites (11)  Discussion lists (4)  News (3)  Newsletters (3)  Online magazines (3)  Wikis (1) 

  To the front pageSign inTo the frontpageSearch in GUUUI postingsAbout GUUUI