In most cases, frontend and backend developers develop for the website authors and not for the end customer. Website authors are therefore a crucial part of the user experience. They are however rarely perceived as users and often neglected in the digital value chain: user interfaces are too technical, configurations offer too many choices and functionalities are not obvious. Website authors have to find their way around in different systems and invest valuable time searching for hidden functions. Content is not fed in as planned, functionalities remain undiscovered and cannot be adapted to the design agency’s concept. Mock-ups created in advance differ from the resulting solution for the real website content. As a logical consequence, the end customer’s user experience also suffers. Frustrations are the result of an inefficient allocation of resources.
This problem has various causes: as a rule, different developers work on a project, which in most cases extends over a long period of time. In addition, in an agile approach with Scrum only the intended functions are described in the user stories, not their implementation. This results in a large number of possible solutions. If the developers involved in the project work independently of each other, the individual operating methods of the respective dialogues make the process even more difficult. If there is no uniform solution, authors have to constantly reorient themselves when editing content. So what’s the solution?
IBM iX has found an answer to this problem with author experience (AX). Author experience focuses on website authors and their needs as users in order to facilitate their work through user-friendly interfaces and operation. Ultimately, a unique and optimised user experience (UX) can only be created for the end customer if authors are empowered to carry out their tasks.
At its core, a good author experience should be based on the characteristics of a good user experience: the software can be used intuitively and follows a familiar structure. This requires a recognition value and a consistent interface. Ultimately, an optimum AX is based on well thought-out information architecture that enables authors to find the right information in the right place at the right time. Descriptive error messages can also help here.
A good AX has a coherent system resulting in a faster time-to-value: authors achieve higher quality in a shorter time, which in turn benefits the user. Satisfaction for the users and website authors increases through the optimisation of usability and user experience. Which approaches lead to a sustainably good AX?
The issue of author experience and its far-reaching impact is often underestimated and ignored in projects. AX is a central building block for optimised usability and user experience. The user only benefits if the author can implement the design specifications according to their ideas. It is therefore of enormous relevance to provide website authors with functional systems with a high level of usability.
Related projectsLink copied Link copied?
Explore more of our work at IBM iX