All posts by Jessica Weber

Portal Page: Prototypes, Analysis & Inspiration

homemockupWe’d like to share some of our ideas for the future portal page to Duke Digital Collections. We have included highlights from user feedback that draw attention to important navigation elements, as well as examples of websites that have informed these designs. Please let us know what you think!


You can review our five initial prototypes (A through E) here.

Emphasis has been placed on ways to ease navigation by providing clear, easy ways to browse and prominently displaying visual content that highlights an assortment of interesting materials from our collections.


We’ve uncovered several important requirements for the new portal page through the variety of research methods we employed:
Continue reading Portal Page: Prototypes, Analysis & Inspiration

Search Analysis: What We’ve Learned

Stop searching for records- just flip a lever; Ad*Access. Item R0712.

We’re taking a user-centered approach in planning the new Digital Collections web interface to ensure that our new design meets the needs and expectations of the people who use it.  One way to discover those needs is to analyze our web traffic in an attempt to decipher user intent when searching and browsing materials in our site.  Valuable patterns exist in this data that can help us optimize the site’s utility and performance by supporting actual user information-seeking behaviors.  Lou Rosenfeld recently wrote a terrific blog post about this “bottom-up analysis” on A List Apart.

Using aggregated data from Google Analytics, we studied searches performed in our site from the period between May 1st and November 1st this year.  We found that Duke Digital Collections was searched approximately 131,000 times during this six month period; that’s an average of 717 searches per day.  The average user spent about three minutes on the site after entering his or her search query and viewed nearly four pages.  Visitors also adjusted their searches with keyword refinement 26% of the time. Continue reading Search Analysis: What We’ve Learned