Eventbrite Usability Testing
September - December 2017
Completed for Usability Testing Class (HCDE 417)
Role: Usability Researcher
Eventbrite is a web and mobile platform that allows event organizers to plan, promote, sell tickets to and organize events, while attendees can explore and purchase tickets to different events. The company describes itself as an event technology platform with a mission "to bring the world together through live experiences".
Our team hypothesized that the majority of users only use Eventbrite to purchase tickets and do not use the site to browse events. This detracts from the amount of money that Eventbrite makes.
Our team completed usability studies with 8 participants. We designed the usability study to determine the overall stickiness of the site, and to determine improvements to increase the overall stickiness of the site.
We found that the use case we had hypothesized about was correct. Many users only visit Eventbrite after finding an event they're interested in on a different website. Other platforms are thought of as easier to browse or more accessible. The following key findings contribute to these thoughts.
Our high severity key findings include the quality of event content, and the recommended event section.
The quality of event content is often lacking because event organizers present contradictory information in the description, and add tags that do not represent the event. The recommended event section presents events based off of who the event organizer is rather than tags or similar types of events. To see the recommended event section, a user is required to scroll to the very bottom of the last page in the registration process.
Our medium severity key findings include the limited filtering capabilities, and the quality of search results.
Eventbrite's filters are lacking when it comes to the date and price filter. The date filter is presented on the homepage but is missing the custom date option, so users do not expect that they are able to filter with a custom date range on the search results page. The price filter only offers free and paid filters, rather than a custom price range. The quality of search results are often lacking. The search results don't match the user input, especially with the location filter, where the location will be set somewhere but results are shown that are quite a ways away. There is also limited control of search results. Many users wanted to be able to pick more than one category to find events, but that is not an option.
The final report goes over methods, metrics, results, and recommendations. It also has the survey results from the usability tests.
Over ten weeks our team went through declaring and proposing our project, developing a study plan, conducting usability testing, analyzing the data, and then wrote our final report and presented our findings.
Project Declaration & Proposal
Eventbrite is a web and mobile platform that allows event organizers to plan, promote, sell tickets, and host events, while attendees can explore and purchase tickets to different events. Our team chose to focus on the web platform and the attendees. There is more to explore and evaluate on the web platform and attendees are the users who generate revenue for Eventbrite by purchasing tickets.
Specifically, our team was interested in investigating the overall stickiness of the site. We wanted to find whether Eventbrite encourages users to stay on the site and browse, and what could be done to improve the overall stickiness of the site.
Study Plan & Test Kit
After deciding our focus, we had to create the plan and test kit for our usability study. This included the recruitment survey, the scenarios or what we would ask participants to do, the script for our studies, additional surveys, and questions we would ask the participants.
Our team tested with eight participants. Seven of the testing sessions were in private rooms and one was in a quiet hallway, and all eight were recorded with both audio and video via UX cloud. For each testing session, we had at least two of our team there; one to moderate the test session, and one to take notes. If there were additional team members available, they would also take notes.
Our team went through the notes we had recorded during our testing sessions and extracted the important information. We had attended three or four testing sessions each, so we had an idea of what the general trends were and what information we should pull out.
We then took particularly salient quotes or notes and wrote them out on sticky notes in order to do affinity analysis. We found trends that were present throughout all of the eight studies. We wrote our preliminary analysis based on these trends that we found.
I believe that we gained valuable results about the overall stickiness of Eventbrite's website. Some issues that we ran into included how the team worked together, and a rushed recruitment timeline.
There were some issues with how work was delegated within the team. From the beginning one of my teammates was an obvious leader within the team. They tended to start discussions and talk about what we needed to get done. This ended up backfiring because they and I ended up doing a large amount of the work and the other two team members tended to slack off a bit more. After meeting with the professor to try and work through the issues within our team, one of the other team members stepped up and took charge of the final paper, delegating work to everyone else and editing the final product. However, the third teammate seemed to still slack off. They attempted to take over the presentation, their assigned work, near when it was due, after I had done a lot of the work already. Overall, this team was not very enjoyable to work in because of the unbalanced workload and the lack of effort put in by some team members.
The recruitment timeline was very short. We had about a week to create our recruitment survey, send it out to the world, filter through responses, and schedule participants. There were a lot of unforeseen obstacles within this recruitment process. For this project, we were not able to offer any incentives for participants which meant that people were less likely to want to participate in this study, and wouldn't fill out the survey, or they wouldn't respond to our emails after filling out the survey. We ended up having to somewhat disregard what our initial recruitment criteria was because we had to have around 7-8 participants total. After we received responses to our survey, we had to reserve spaces to hold the usability study session in. However, this was during midterms at University of Washington and finding private rooms to reserve proved to be challenging. This further limited who we could complete usability study sessions with, and meant that our sessions were not all held in the same area or room. Although we tried to keep all of our sessions in private rooms, there was one that was held in a quiet public area.