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Understanding Search

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Understanding Search

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When we talk about search, what do you think about? Algorithms? Databases? Search is one of the most commonly used tools on the web, yet we treat it like a math problem. If we start with human behavior, expectations and patterns, we can design a search that is easier and more satisfying to use. We'll cover how users think of search, how they behave in information environments, common mistakes in testing and designing search, and how to make a better finding experience.

When we talk about search, what do you think about? Algorithms? Databases? Search is one of the most commonly used tools on the web, yet we treat it like a math problem. If we start with human behavior, expectations and patterns, we can design a search that is easier and more satisfying to use. We'll cover how users think of search, how they behave in information environments, common mistakes in testing and designing search, and how to make a better finding experience.

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Understanding Search

  1. 1. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 1 Understanding Search Christina Wodtke
  2. 2. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 2
  3. 3. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 3
  4. 4. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 4
  5. 5. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 5 Search is a Tardis • Search lets you go everywhere in time and space • Search is there when you need it, where ever you are • Search is bigger on the inside
  6. 6. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 6 This is not search
  7. 7. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 7 This is not search
  8. 8. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 8 This is search
  9. 9. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 9 Search is a system, not a page • It underlies all activities on the web. • It is an environment people are learning to live in: ambient search • It must be accessed everywhere the user may need it, from desktop to ipad to kiosk
  10. 10. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 10 Is search so different? • User behave differently when searching • Much faster • Requires articulation rather than recognition • Expectations high • Tunnel vision
  11. 11. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 11 Interface Precision Recall User Psychology
  12. 12. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 12 Speed of People Searching is a Challenge • People take only a second to search • People want to take only a second
  13. 13. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 13 Researching Search • Traditional research mars results • Requires different research methods – Eyetracking – Bucket testing – Ethnography
  14. 14. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 14 Search must be Easy • Help overcome “query block” • Offer tools for articulation • Use disambiguation tools • Give answers, not just links
  15. 15. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 15 Query block?
  16. 16. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 16 Articulation Problems • The vast number of searches are under 3 words • IN the US, 42% are single-word queries http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/keyword-stats.html
  17. 17. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 17 Search must be Easy Help overcome “query block”
  18. 18. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 18 Query helpers Popular searches
  19. 19. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 19 Use disambiguation tools
  20. 20. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 20 Vertical Search Vertical search
  21. 21. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 21 Vertical Search • As part of the system, how does vertical search help? – Disambiguation tool – Allows for greater precision – Some searches highly consumable – Raises awareness of offering
  22. 22. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 22 Vertical Search- Challenges User tunnel vision
  23. 23. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 23 Don’t overwhelm 23 • 13 tabs– no one saw them. Six tabs, everyone saw them
  24. 24. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 24 Embed.
  25. 25. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 25 No one uses filters
  26. 26. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 26 Except when they do
  27. 27. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 27 Or they really really do
  28. 28. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 28 ANSWERS
  29. 29. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 29 What do you know? • Search is a question whose answer is not always a website (or an article) • What ANSWERS are possible?
  30. 30. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 30 Search must be Easy Give answers, not just links
  31. 31. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 31 Best Bets (human intervention) • Analyze the head • Analyze content • Maximize the knowledge
  32. 32. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 32
  33. 33. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 33 Human disambiguation How do you use editorial to best effect? Humans don’t scale.
  34. 34. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 34 Zipf curve (for search) Most common searches (head) Least common searches (tail)
  35. 35. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 35
  36. 36. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 36 Logs FTW
  37. 37. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 37 How people search
  38. 38. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 39 Answers
  39. 39. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 40 What unique answers do you possess? • Your product knowledge • Your teams • Common issues
  40. 40. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 41 Search must be Fast • Must retrieve results quickly • Must load results quickly • Must be read quickly Scan time is as important as load time. Every pixel has a job to do.
  41. 41. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 42 Every pixel has a job to do.
  42. 42. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 43 Comprehensive Users expect you to look everywhere From Peter Morville’s Search Patterns
  43. 43. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 44 Federated
  44. 44. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 45 Findable Tag it!  Images don’t have descriptive metadata  Many documents don’t have the words users use  Metadata can also let you give the user more options for searching and displaying results  Search Analytics hint: Search Logs can provide insight into the attributes users care most about
  45. 45. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 46 Simple Complex Synonym Rings Authority Files Thesauri Classification Schemes Equivalence Hierarchical Associative (Vocabularies) (Relationships) Controlled Vocabulary Types
  46. 46. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 47 Controlled vocabularies 47 A=B A B A B Equivalence Christmas= Xmas Hierarchal Winter Holidays > Christmas Associative Christmas Tree | Santa Claus
  47. 47. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 48 Synonym rings 48 • Simplest type • Helps with search, indexing • Simplifies maintenance
  48. 48. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 49 Synonym rings include 49 • Acronyms: BBC, British Broadcasting Company; MPG, miles per gallon • Variant spellings: cancelled, canceled; honor, honour • Scientific terms versus popular use terms: acetylsalicylic acid, aspirin; lilioceris, lily beetle – From Synonym Rings and Authority Files by Karl Fast, Fred Leise and Mike Steckel
  49. 49. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 50 Why Bother? 50 • Sometimes on intranets, CV’s are skipped • You think you can force people to use proper terms • But people are lazy/busy/distracted I’m tired of typing “Controlled Vocabulary--- CV is shorter.
  50. 50. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 51 Precision • Usually left to the engineers (don’t do that) • Users give up rather than check the second page of results • The first answer must be the right answer
  51. 51. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 52 SME testing
  52. 52. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 53 Mind-reading expected And increasingly delivered
  53. 53. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 54 Jakob Nielsen: “Poor search was the greatest single cause of reduced usability across intranets we have seen, aside from the general lack of executive support and budget. Search usability accounted for an estimated 43% of the difference in employee productivity between intranets with high and low usability.”
  54. 54. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 55 Let’s Get Doctorin’ the TARDIS Christina Wodtke @cwodtke cwodtke@eleganthack.com Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web www.boxesandarrows.com
  55. 55. 6/21/2013 ChristinaWodtke.com 56 LET’S DISCUSS What is search for you?

Hinweis der Redaktion

  • http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/keyword-stats.html

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