Ethnographic study is an attempt to gain a comprehensive understanding,
from many perspectives, about how an end user experiences a web site,
in his own environment. Traditional usability testing, while providing
a laboratory environment that makes data collection and recording easy,
also removes user and Web site from context of workplace. Sometimes, it's
best to see exactly how things are done in real world.
How We Do Ethnographic Studies?
We begin by arranging for a field visit with users. Choosing a variety
of users of your Web site, from different workplaces, industries, and
backgrounds. Spend a few hours at the field site with user, collect as
much data as possible and analyze it later. While conducting an ethnographic
study, we divide the exercise into 3 important steps. They are:
We instruct investigators to establish objectives of the study and their
information requirements. It is very important for the Investigators to
gain confidence and co-operation of the participants before carrying out
Running the study
The Investigators run a pilot observation session, to get a feel of what
they can expect and also test out observation sheets. This gives them
an idea of how long the observation session might take. Investigators
note down any incomprehensible events that occur during the study, that
they can clarify later with the participants. After the observation study
is done with, they write their first impressions, before the analysis
The investigators analyze, summarize and prepare the final report, keeping
in mind the objectives set out at the beginning of the study.
Benefits Of Ethnographic Studies
Provides the clients with accurate information on what the end users
do in context of the websites. Direct observation will help the investigators
to pay attention to specific areas of interest to websites, while indirect
observation may draw your attention to things, which you otherwise might
have left unnoticed or unrecorded. Notes and studies need to be analyzed
by the moderator, which can be time consuming and prevents the task being
split up for analysis by a number of people.
When to use Ethnographic Study?
Do you have the information about the characteristics and working conditions
of your target users that you need to design effective solutions?
Or, do you want to find out how your web site is used in actual working
environments to help drive a future release?
Our expert field researchers provide you with the concise analysis you
need, whether you are writing requirements and functional specifications
or identifying improvements for future releases.
We conduct on-site interviews, observations, and surveys, getting you
the data you need to make informed design decisions, no matter where you
are in your development cycle.
Best used in the early stages of development, when you need to know more
about the issues surrounding the use of a Web site rather than actual
metrics. In the really early stages, when you just have an idea that you
might need to satisfy a particular need, field observations help gather
user requirements and issues for incorporation into preliminary designs.
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Contact us now for a FREE
Basic Web Site Usability Review, to get a feel of our web
usability services towards strategizing your next business move.
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