Stepan at the WebTop 100 conference

04.11.2011 | Author: Stepan Doubrava
On 25th of Novemeber I have visited the conference WebTop100 and here is some notes and interesting quotes I have heard:

First presentation was given by Jiri Suchy, the man who stands behind the redesign of O2 web pages. Link
  • His team tends to speak to the stakeholders and collect expectations not requirements, because expectations do not necessarily have to be implemented.
  • When redesigning in the corporation one good solution is sometimes forced on behalf of another good solution.
  • Give the job to good and motivated people. Give them the authority and trust that they will do a good job.
  • Programmers should not design UX but need to know the reasons behind particular decisions.
  • It is not possible to satisfy 100% of the users, stakeholders and your ego.

Second presentation was by Petr Štědrý from Dobrý Web. Him and his team has redesigned a web of Sencor in just 14 days.
  • Petr believes, that the problems in design needs to be communicated visually and that everybody can draw sufficiently to be able to participate on the "discussion".
  • They have started the project by the design workshop, where all the stakeholders did 3 round of drawing of their vision.

Next in line was Daniel Frouz, the owner of InetPrint, company providing not just promo materials and prints. He spoke about the redesign of their extensive portal/eshop, where they have reached some remarkable improvements in conversion rate.
  • Recomendation: leave enough time for the usability testing. Which should come as soon as possible in the design phase. During the implementation it is too late.
  • They started the project by setting the main goals and did a brainstorming using the mind maps.
  • When cooperating with external agencies, it is important to communicate extensively.
  • Various visual designs have to be done by multiple visual designers.
  • They decide to provide the prices on the web, but they plan on blocking suspicious request from their competition.

I did not make much notes from the presentation of Jiří Chromát from Seznam.cz. Not that it was not interesting, but because I do not know much about czech Pay Per Click and their system sClick.

The next presentation was given by Petra Brodílková from Google. The only woman on the agenda (as she has presented herself). She has revealed some nice features for the online marketers, to be used in the very near future.
  • Remarketing - you will be able to identify the visitors of your web pages, for whom your specified adds will be display when they browse the web. How cool is that!
  • She has introduced a google optimizer. A tool which automatically creates the online marketing campaigns and while it runs the campaigns, it learns itself and optimizes along the way.
  • She has mentioned an application Our Mobile Planet, which shows statistics of mobile usages. For some it might be a well known thing, but for me it was a cool new application.
  • Then she has advertised the AdMob. A system for online advertisement on mobile phones. In the Czech Republic it has 1.7M users and over 100M impressions.
  • Petra also spoke of the TrueView, a system which allows you to post video ads before the Youtube videos. I personally find those ads annoying and skip them, but important thing is, that the advertiser only pays, if the viewer sees the whole clip!

The next presenter came late, so after 5 minutes of waiting I left for a coffee and got sucked into the discussion with Jiří Suchý and Ondřej Kratochvíl about what it is like to be a UX designer in the big corporation.

The next presentation was by Ondřej Kratochvíl, about the critical state of the UX in the Czech Republic. From my point of view this was the best speech - bold and critical.
  • From Ondrej's perspective thee is 3 main problems when it come to czech web pages: Trying to be different no matter what, Putting everything into the menu, Not explaining clearly what is the company about.
  • It is important to deal with UX as a whole, not just the usability testing.
  • It is important to deal with UX across the all channels, not just web.
  • It is important to communicate with external agencies.
  • UX can not be measured, and therefore it attract lots of incapable people.
  • The most important marker is the "customer satisfaction" (even more important then sales)
  • Constant patching is often so expensive, that it is better and more effective to do a complete re-design.

For the next presentation of Martin Kalda from Mather, my attention has been weakening, so even when the presentations were interesting I just could not keep my full concentration:
  • Designers use the filler texts "loren ipsum", which they later replace. However they also use the filler images from the databases, which the don't! And so we have the webs full of annoying young professionals shaking hands.
  • We do the webs for the companies, not for the CEOs.
  • By default, companies should have the brand manual and use it!

Michal Špaček from Skype has complaint about the security of the webs. One of the sites he found so offensive, that he decided to punish the owners by hacking it (live). Unlike everyone else, I did not find this so amusing. I was thinking about the owners of the page who will have to spent their money to fix this and everyone else who has to spend our money to protect agains hackers like Michal.

At the end Jan Havel from Actum had an interesting presentation, not just visually, about our fears and phobias when it comes to designing webs.
  • What stops us from doing things properly is the fear.
  • Clients do not improve the agency by micromanaging it. Give them the trust and authority.
  • Agencies fight the micromanagement using the method of ugly green stain. They place something horrible on the design, for the client to complain about it, winning this battle and not complaining about anything else.
  • Every self-respecting agency is counting the time and charges for extra work.
  • If we make a bad decision, but quickly, it can be fixed. However, if we hesitate with the decision nothing is done and nothing can be fixed.
  • It is important to see where the money is.

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