World Usability Day 2010


Tomorrow, November 11th 2010, is World Usability Day. Why should you care? Because usability can directly impact the bottom line of your firm, helping to increase conversion, leads and ultimately revenue. And in this time of the ‘great recession’ nothing should be more interesting to you and your firm than increasing conversion (revenue), especially if it can be accomplished in a manner that is relatively low in cost and fast in results.

World Usability Day logo

The purpose of World Usability Day is to provide education and information opportunities throughout the globe about:

  • What usability is
  • Why usability works
  • Where usability can make a difference

This year’s theme for World Usability Day is ‘Communication.’

In my little corner of the world, the Austin Texas area, the World Usability Day event will be held at MutualMobile, a firm dedicated to building applications for the mobile marketplace. This fits well with the theme of Communication as there’s been tremendous growth in the number and usage of mobile applications to aid communications between individuals and businesses.

Of course, usability goes well beyond the bottom line benefits of improving conversion and revenue for firms. The benefits of a more usable app / tool / website etc. include:

  • Increasing customer satisfaction
  • Reducing friction and churn
  • Decreasing psychological and physiological stress

I’ve surveyed hundreds of companies in the past year, and the good news is many of them recognize the importance of usability. Many seek software or hardware development team members with experience in usability. However, there are still many who don’t.  Frankly, there is still much work to do. Not a day goes by when I, and probably you too, come across an application or website that is not easy to use, causing us unnecessary stress and inhibiting or halting our ability to complete our tasks.

I say this about usability…

“Education about usability and its benefits is the single most important tool for a more user-friendly and satisfying world for each of us.”

I urge you to seek out and go to a local World Usability Day event near you. And if you are unable to make it to one, I hope you’ll stop by the World Usability Day website to learn more about usability and what it, and you, can do to make things better for you, your firm and our world.

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