The Test Team helps manage testing and triage across the WordPress ecosystem. They focus on user testing of the editing experience and WordPress dashboard, replicating and documenting bug reports, and supporting a culture of review and triage across the project.
We wanted to get some user research around the Shiny Updates pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory https://wordpress.org/plugins/ or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party (and the plugin process in general).
The first tests were done with basic tasks like installing, activating, and deleting plugins. These were without the Shiny Update plugin installed. I also had the user answer a few questions after the tasks as well.
- How often do you visit the Plugin page on your own WordPress website?Rarely. I used WordPress.comWordPress.com An online implementation of WordPress code that lets you immediately access a new WordPress environment to publish your content. WordPress.com is a private company owned by Automattic that hosts the largest multisite in the world. This is arguably the best place to start blogging if you have never touched WordPress before. https://wordpress.com/ over a year ago, but had extensive experience with the product.
- How many plugins do you typically have installed on your WordPress sites?I would estimate 5-10 plugins.
- Is it easy to see which plugins you have installed and to see the status of those plugins?Yes.
- Is there anything you’d like to change with the Plugins process?I personally thought it was very easy to use. Any wordpress user would have an easy time using it.
- How often do you visit the Plugin page on your own WordPress website?Everytime I am working on my sites.
- How many plugins do you typically have installed on your WordPress sites?2 or 3
- Is it easy to see which plugins you have installed and to see the status of those plugins?Yes
- Is there anything you’d like to change with the Plugins process?No
The next test involved installing Shiny Updates. I really bombed here in the wording of my questions and basically confused the user which lead to uncompleted tasks, but this is a good jump off point. I learned a lot about the differences in the processes myself. 🙂 I’ll document these differences soon. I’m currently refining the test to help improve the task flowFlow Flow is the path of screens and interactions taken to accomplish a task. It’s an experience vector. Flow is also a feeling. It’s being unselfconscious and in the zone. Flow is what happens when difficulties are removed and you are freed to pursue an activity without forming intentions. You just do it.
Flow is the actual user experience, in many ways. If you like, you can think of flow as a really comprehensive set of user stories. When you think about user flow, you’re thinking about exactly how a user will perform the tasks allowed by your product.Flow and Context.
User 1 (of next test)
- How often do you visit the Plugin page on your own WordPress website?I have never visited the Plugin page before. I am familiar with Plugins but have never added them to my WordPress site before this exercise.
- How many plugins do you typically have installed on your WordPress sites?I only have any plugins that are automatically installed on my WordPress site. I have never installed any additional plugins.
- Is it easy to see which plugins you have installed and to see the status of those plugins?Yes, very easy. The list format is easy to see and read; I like that the status of the plugin is stated directly below the name. It makes it quick and easy to visually know what is installed and activated/deactivated on the site.
- Is there anything you’d like to change with the Plugins process?My only suggested change would be to include all of the options offered on the drop down “Bulk Actions” menu directly below the names of each added Plugin. This might make the process of making changes a bit quicker and easier for users. Also. the name Bulk Actions makes it sound as though that is only to be used if making changes to multiple plugins so it may be a bit misleading for users who are attempting to make changes to only one plugin at a time.
- Doing away with the ‘bleak screen of sadness’ is a great start. That screen tended to cause confusion and required a full read to understand what was happening on that page.
- The bulk update dropdown and button seem to get a lot of attention even though the user may only be targeting one plugin at a time. This could be due to the fact that that is the primary button in the most relevant place which might misguide them. Users also are not necessarily selecting a plugin before clicking the ‘apply’ button which doesn’t return any useful feedback.
I’ll be modifying the next test and sharing the results shortly.