We were honored and excited to host the New Hampshire Usability Experience Professionals Association (NH UXPA) meetup this month in our brand new Vital offices! The topic was: Fast Food Functionality — calling out all the new and hot user interface (UI) trends…. that are actually terrible for user experience (UX).
The fact that half the Vital team had just moved into their new desks that very same day didn’t stop us from grabbing pizza from our Portsmouth, NH branch of Flatbread Company, some beer from Smuttynose Brewing Company (yup, that’s a #MadeByVital website) and some Mickey Dee’s cheeseburgers (to round out the “fast food” vibe), and welcoming approximately 45–50 people to hang with us in our new digs. After meeting and mingling with NH marketing and tech professionals from near and far (some drove over an hour from Boston MA and NH homes and offices), we kicked off the meat of the event — the presentations.
Jesse Rand (Vital’s Creative Director) started off with his presentation on the Hamburger Menu:
Shawn Grant (Designer at PixelMEDIA) followed with a talk on the Full-Screen Homepage Hero Image. It’s a growing trend, and for good reason—it’s quick and easy and looks pretty. But is it really the best solution based on the goal of your website? Maybe… maybe not.
Adam Walter (Vital’s Director of Development) was up next, setting his sights on the CAPTCHA.
And Chris Getman (Vital’s Director of Inbound Marketing) rounded out the evening with a look at goals and a website’s inbound marketing performance. It was great to get the perspective of the person who is often tasked with generating leads from a website after designers and developers have finished their work. Chris’ slides were sort of a “you had to be there” deck, but they contained a great shot of Jesse crying (as tends to happen when he talks to the inbound team).
Chris pointed out that you must start from your goals (the money) and work backward, design for those goals, test everything and — HUSTLE. A pretty website will only get you so far — in order to have success at inbound marketing, your website had better get results.
— Chuck McMahon (@cjmcmahon_NH) June 12, 2015
After the presentations we enjoyed some lively discussion and questions around CAPTCHA alternatives, a potential future hamburger menu icon ubiquity and even a defense of the hamburger menu icon (conditionally).
Whether you were able to join us or not, we hope you enjoy the presentations linked above, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts on this user experience and design discussion either on Twitter or in the comments below.