Mapsted

Mapsted is a company that leads innovation in the indoor navigation space. Specializing in intelligent indoor wayfinding with turn-by-turn blue dot navigation, they are ahead of the competition by offering indoor navigation without all the external hardware that is typically associated with it. They also specialize in advanced analytics and location-based marketing software. 

The Task

Create copy for the Analytics User Explorer dashboard to guide users through providing number values to see correlating data.

The original copy for the User Flow tab was difficult to understand and was easily misinterpreted. Nearly all my interviewees were unsure of what the text was prompting them to do, or they ended up pondering over it longer than necessary.

The process and reasoning

The old copy

The parameters for the data on "app session time" must meet certain criteria to display the data within a given time frame. In this case, the user had input a value in the first field that was higher than the lower value, in turn creating an error. By looking at the text surrounding the input field I discovered room for improvement which I discuss below. 

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     The more than/less than doesn't help users know that there is a maximum or minimum enumeration value and which value to put where. The user could have simply interpreted the word "more" and put a higher value and saw the word "less" and therefore put in a lower value.

     The min at the end of the value field is also confusing. Does this mean more than the minimum? Using the text "more than" followed by "min" and "less than" also followed by "min" gives a convoluted message.

     The error message is not consistent with the text on the user interface, therefore causing further confusion.

The new copy

Taking a tip from the existing error message I decided to simply re-work the copy so the user interface was in alignment with the error. If the user input a minimum value that was higher than the maximum value they would receive the same error message and it would actually be helpful in guiding them on what to do next. Testing the words minimum and maximum turns out to be a common phrase that most users relate with and are familiar with providing a lower value for minimum and a higher value for maximum. 

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      Changing the text to minimum and maximum was an easy fix that made a world of difference for guiding users. 

     After researching the most common meaning of the word "min" I found that it is often used as an abbreviation of the word minimum. In this case, since we are dealing with maximum and minimum values we should try and be as clear as possible to not confuse "min" with minimum and instead clarify that the text means "minutes". In this particular revision, the designer didn't have space to change the word although a simple fix would be to instead abbreviate the values maximum to "max" and minimum to "min" therefore making space for the full word "minutes" to be included in the UI copy.

     The error message is now consistent with the text on the user interface.