This last week I got to receive feedback from one of my classmates. I have had really bad luck with the last two peer reviews as the people I was partnered with didn’t do a review on me, so I was never able to hear what they had to say about my site and make improvements. I was excited to see what my peer had to say (if I’m being honest I thought he was going to love everything about it), and to be totally transparent with you guys I found it challenging taking his feedback as constructive criticism. I have made myself extremely vulnerable by making my website so personal, so when Kai gave me feedback (I might add was good feedback to get) I felt like he was hating on me, which was not the case at all.
Once I got past being upset that he didn’t love my site like I hoped he would, I took some of his advice and implemented it immediately into my site. Kai found the menu bars on the side of my site to be confusing and they took away from the content, as the menu bars were distracting. I really didn’t agree with what he had to say at first. I thought the menu bars on the side added to the theme of my blog, but after careful consideration I decided to get rid of them as I want my audience to have an easy time navigating my site, and they were not able to do that with the way my site was.
Another suggestion he made was for me was to add more pictures to my posts. I was hesitant to do this at first as I don’t have original photos for the product reviews I did. I realized that no one would really care, especially if they got more sales because of it, so I have been adding pictures to both my blog posts, product reviews, but not my process posts as I don’t believe they need pictures to support or enhance the content. I also have been using tags on all my posts in hopes of having my blog appear for people when they are searching the web. Kai’s review of my site was a thoughtful and critical assessment that has helped me propel my work.
From the feedback I received from my TA in the class Micky Harris I have also created links in my posts taking my readers to the sites or products I reference. I didn’t know it before but things like “clickable (footnote 2) buttons and tabs, draggable sliders, and spinnable controls, as well as other elements that more or less directly suggest suitable user actions” (Kaptelinin, 2023, para. 14) are called affordances, they prompt you to do something. They are “strong visual clues to the operation of things” (Kaptelinin, 2023, para.13). One thing that I know as a consumer myself is that I am lazy. I don’t want to have to go search up things myself, so having buttons or links that take me directly to the site is insurance that I will go there and check it out for myself.
I may not have loved all the feedback at the time, but now I can truly say that I appreciate what I did receive as I do believe that it has improved my site immensely.
Affordances. (n.d.). The Interaction Design Foundation. https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/book/the-encyclopedia-of-human-computer-interaction-2nd-ed/affordances