Macromedia part 2: Macromedia –

Macromedia part 2: Macromedia – Macromedia.com Progress Report: Beta 1 a more detailed report on the new design details what needs to improve: “The ‘Experience Matters’ promotion [Peter: which takes up half the screen real estate!] had a click-through rate of more than 3%, which is above average for us and 10X what static promotional elements obtain industry-wide. So from a business point of view, it was very successful.” 3% clickthrough is successful for something that takes up half your homepage? What are these people thinking?

They did use some clever pageload metrics:

– “Initial render” is the number of seconds it takes to see something change in your browser. Our goal is 7 seconds.
– “Threshold of interactivity” is the seconds it takes before you can start interacting with the application or content. Our goal is 14 seconds.
– “Complete render” is the time it takes to complete the entire rendering. Our goal is 25 seconds.

An approach worth copying. The case study also notes: “A statistic that surprised us was that the satisfaction index did not change with connection speed. Said another way, connection speed didn’t have any impact on satisfaction.”

Also interesting: “At the same time, the new features we put in our home page application weren’t used. Less than 1% of our customers used the tray nav and less than 5% used the product and solution pickers.”

The next page of the report discusses what worked well: “We’ve seen great success this first week with our rich Internet applications. […] In the first week, we saw a 93% increase in extension downloads. Said another way, the number of downloads almost doubled with the new exchange application. […] Membership was up more than 300% this week. We should note that part of this increase was due to a change in registration processes. [Peter: plus the incoming traffic from the publicity generated by the redesign itself].”

There are more progress reports:
On how the site works technically.
The second beta. They seem very focussed on removing the amount of clicks to get somewhere, which leads to mistaken ideas like very expandable menus and such. In my opinion they should balance the user experience – the amount of clicks isn’t always the most important thing, as long as you find what you’re looking for and don’t get lost the experience will be positive.
What did we learn? (in short: homepages don’t need complex apps)

Good to see an influential company open a conversation with their users like this.

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