What's next?

Truly successful interaction design relies on continuously asking yourself that question, so your users don't have to. Early on in the redesign of Five Second Test we focused a lot of our attention on how users created tests. We removed the need to register, we reduced the number of steps to the bare essentials, and eliminated all but one test type. What we had failed to do however, was to ask ourselves what we needed to do once a test was created. As it turned out, our users, having gone through the painless test creation process would wind up looking at their test results screen. This had made perfect sense to us from an application point of view, the only problem was there were no results to look at. To make matters even worse the most prominent button on the page was the one allowing users to export their non-existent results. Had we more carefully considered what our next action should be we would have realized that getting people to run a test needed to happen prior to viewing any results. It's seems like a laughable oversight but it's a surprisingly easy one to make when you're focusing on application state instead of the needs of the user.