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UI Refresh: Your Sneak Peak

We are almost there … consider this your sneak peak!  As previously mentioned, one of the things I am most excited to be working on right now is what I am calling our User Interface Refresh.  I’ve been bouncing around a lot of terms – redesign, just seems too heavy, overhaul – sounds like a big mess, but refresh seems to fit.  We are re-skinning the current site, updating the logo, graphics, and icons.  The collective “we” being our “User Advocate”, Eric Sagalyn, and our original design guru, Brian Thomas.  This is going to go a long way as far as usability is concerned.  We are definitely simplifying, removing the noise, and reassessing what is important.  We will be cranking the rest of the week to pin down the design, swap out icons, and get all the interior pages layed out properly.

As I complete this refresh, I would like to integrate a feature that I am starting to see everywhere – the “Give Feedback” widgets.  These widgets are developed by third parties and are designed to remain sticky no matter what page of a website you are looking at.  On any given page, users can click the feedback widget button, and provide their opinions, ideas, frustrations, and general comments about your website.  I’ve researched GetSatisfaction, Kampyle, and UserVoice.  They all have this feedback widget I am talking about, but beyond that, they are very different and I’m not sure how robust I want to go right now.  To start, I am leaning towards Kampyle for its easy Feedback integration widget and analytic tracking.  The piece of the feedback form that sets them apart is the very first question they ask you: “How do you feel about this site?” and you have choose one of these little faces:

This was really compelling to me, because I not only want to get my customer’s feedback, I really want to know how they are *feeling* about the experience overall.  GetSatisfaction has some nice additional features, where users can rate on a scale of 1 to 10 whether they would recommend the site to their friend, and UserVoice had a really cool way to vote suggestions up and down in Digg style.  All seem to fill the market in different ways, and it is tough to decide between them.  If there are other suggestions or recommendations on other feedback widgets I should take a look at, I am all ears!

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