There’s no doubt Apple’s iPad has become a content marketing game changer. Yet to date there is still not a whole lot of research out there looking into user behaviour.
The basic user expectations of a good iPad app are now pretty much the same as they were for websites in the late 20th century – an app should be easy to use and navigate, fast to load and crash-free.
However, the results of some user testing recently conducted by one of Edge’s clients – Carnival Australia – showed there’s a little more to it than that.
Using the iPad version of the current P&O Cruises brochure, developed by Edge in conjunction with Carnival, the testing employed the Tobii mobile eye tracker, which provides information about visual attention. The results reveal users’ search strategies, decision-making processes, cognitive workload, interests and more.
Six participants, who had at least two months of app usage under their belt, were tested with the eye tracker. The ultimate goal was to gain feedback on the app’s navigation, new design, layout and labelling, as well as to identify any functionality or content that could be added.
The group enjoyed looking at the app’s home page, with its attractive main image. However, despite liking the page visually, in usability terms it was considered overly busy, with too much text.
The participants were happy with the overall navigation (tabbed content areas and a prominent home button throughout), but the Twitter feed got a thumbs-down.
They also enjoyed interacting with the information-heavy pages, reading about services, zooming in and out of maps and homing in on their areas of specific interest.
In fact, the main finding was that the group wanted more! More interactivity, more zoom-able images and galleries, more links and special features.
The strongest single recommendation? If something looks ‘tappable’ – then it should be a button!