10 Usability and User Experience Statistics Every Product Manager Needs to Know

Published July 18, 2019 by Arne
6 min read

🌟 Updated on July 23, 2019

User experience is an essential aspect of design that is often overlooked. When this happens, something almost always goes wrong. That is why its value should be understood so it gets the attention it deserves, especially when planning a website. 

While determining its true value, we have compiled a list of statistics that epitomizes what happens when UX is overlooked. Look through the list find out  how UX can affect your business in the long run.

5 users will find 85% of usability problems when testing continuously.

According to Jeff Sauro of MeasuringU, 5 users is all you need during testing to find 85% of the problems in an interface. This conclusion was obtained using a mathematical model using binomial probability known as the Poisson Distribution.

The probability of encountering an error for each participant in a test is 31%. In a Poisson Distribution with a 31% binomial probability, 5 users in a test group are able to find 85% of the problems. However, as you add more than 5 users to a test group, you start exhibiting drastic diminishing returns, which means the more people you add, the less you learn.

These diminishing returns are due to overlap in experiences for users. For the first user, all experiences are unique. The chances of unique experiences diminish as more users are added. But what does this tell us?

This all boils down to efficient allocation of resources. Instead of spending all your budget on a large study with 15 participants, you’re better off spending this budget on three smaller tests with 5 users each to get more meaningful results. 

50% of a developer’s time is spent trying to fix issues that could have been avoided.

A developer spends half his time fixing errors in code to make the code work. This is according to a study conducted by Rogue Wave Software. In the study, they found that 50% of a developer’s time is spent trying to fix bugs during the maintenance aspect of software development. 

In a study from the University of Cambridge, researchers were able to come up with a similar conclusion as those surveyed responded that 49.9% of their programming time was spent debugging. 

The problem is that this results in project delays and added costs. It is estimated that over $625 billion is spent on software production globally in terms of wages and overhead, with $312 billion spent on debugging alone. While this figure talks about the entire global software industry as a whole, this still means that about half of the cost of a piece of software is spent on getting out the bugs.

It gets even more troubling considering that most of the time is spent reworking existing elements of your project. And more often than not, these problems could have been prevented when more planning was involved. Investing in UX testing early on can avoid bad user experiences, and save you a lot of time. 

Problems in development are 10 times more expensive to fix than during design. 

This comes from a quote given by Roger Pressman in the book Software Engineering: A Practitioner’s Approach, which states that it is important to catch errors before rolling the program out to the public. Any error that you find early in the process, such as the design phase, is 10 times less expensive to correct than fixing it during the design phase. Costs pile up even higher when trying to fix the problem after the product has been released.

Errors also have a way of propagating as development progresses. Minor bugs early on can turn into something major if left uncorrected as project development progresses. This results in even higher costs and time lost during development.

To avoid extravagant costs during present and future development, invest in early usability testing to understand your audience’s preferences so you can add them before they become too expensive to add or correct. 

Poor user experience with ads has contributed to the stigma as 420 million people around the world now use ad blockers.

Does your product depend on ads for revenue? Then ad blockers might be your worst enemy. An estimated 420 million people around the world now use ad blockers to improve their experience while using an app or viewing a web page. This results in revenue losses of up to $35 billion by 2020 for publishers. 

The surge in Adblock software should be seen as a response to the abusive nature of display advertising in recent years that severely degrade the user experience. 

With decreasing CPM comes more opportunities to add more ads to a website. This creates a vicious cycle in which the user experience suffers as more ads, coupled with dozens of trackers and cookies, violates user trust and decreases user experience. This results in a decrease in the number of visitors, which in turn, lowers ad costs, delivering lower quality ads onto the page, further affecting the user experience. 

So what can we do then? For publishers who rely on ad revenue, creating a good user experience should be a priority. This means placing only relevant ads and making them work for the user. MediaPost suggests taking a note from TripAdvisor and Houzz who have placed user experience front and center.

Even when they like the business, 50% of users will not use a website if it isn’t mobile-friendly.

In 2019, the number of mobile phone users around the world is expected to reach 4.68 billion according to Statista. This means over 60% of the world’s population will be dependent on their mobile phones. This also means that a great mobile experience is absolutely necessary when you want to do business online.

Today, the fastest route to gaining more customers is through a mobile-friendly site. So when your site offers a great mobile experience, you will find that more users are not only visiting but staying at your site to browse a little more. 

In contrast, Think With Google thinks that not having a mobile-friendly site is actually helping your competitors. That is because users will ultimately look for a site that works for them. 79% of people have reported that they go search for another site when they don’t like what they find on one site. 

In an increasingly mobile world, choosing not to go with the flow is a mistake. Go with what the user wants and go mobile.

“Ease of use” is cited as the most important quality for mobile apps by 97% of users.

There is no doubt that users place a high priority on how easy it is to use an app over other features. This is according to The State of Mobile Enterprise Collaboration published by Harmon. In the survey, 97% of business respondents place ease of use as the highest priority over mobile application security (89%), comprehensive of the features (72%), and training (42%).

In a separate study by Accenture, users placed ease of use as the highest priority (33%) when buying a smartphone device. This goes to show that no matter how many features are added or how well-designed an interface is, it will all be for nothing if it is difficult to use.

79% of users that fail to find what they were looking for will look for another website.

Speaking of ease of use, 79% of users admit that they leave and search for another website if they are unable to access or find what they were looking for. This highlights how crucial it is for a website to be functional and easy to use to make it easier for users to find and access what they were looking for, or purchase and review products and services. 

In today’s mobile-heavy world, seamless navigation and easily-digestible content should go hand in hand with a functional design. This is to ensure that you can create an online environment where users can feel welcome and wanted.

86% of users want to find more information about a site’s products and services after landing on a homepage. 

Audiences are savvier now than ever. They won’t trust brands that easily anymore. When brands make a bold claim or tell them to do something, they won’t just take your word for it – they want to know for themselves.

Consumers want to learn everything about a brand and its products before they make a purchase. That is why 86% of users look for more information when browsing a website, 62% of users look for contact information, while 52% are more interested in the “About us” section. 

That is why it is more important than ever to improve a website’s UX design to make it easier for users to find contact and product information.

The lack of a message can cause 46% of site visitors to leave.

A 2015 research has uncovered that 46% of users refuse to stay in a website that lacks an effective message, i.e. they can’t tell what the company is or what it does. In the same study, 44% of users reported they would leave when there is a severe lack of information and 37% leave due to poor design or navigation.

What does all of this boil down to? Poor usability.

Usability is a product of user-centered design. When the design process is centered on the needs and expectations of the user, you can address many of the user’s pain points. But it’s not just a one-time thing – it is a continuous process that seeks to improve after each cycle.

Focus on giving your users what they need. Address their needs and they stay. Fail to do so and they bounce.

Content sliders don’t work – only 1% of users click on them.

Content sliders, or image carousels, are primarily used for content navigation and exploration. Their primary intent is to improve the user experience, so there’s no harm in using them, right? Studies state otherwise.

In fact, even SEO powerhouse Yoast hates carousels so much. Here are some reasons why:

If you want to share content, never use image sliders. Use static images and high-quality copy instead.

Userbrain - Testing early and often finally becomes reality