Card Sorting & Tree Testing Webinar

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On Wednesday, July 13th at 11:30am PDT, UserZoom and partner Key Lime Interactive hosted a complimentary webinar where they discussed the benefits of two POWERFUL research methods: CARD SORTING & TREE TESTING. This is the full slide deck from the webinar. Enjoy!


  • 1. Webinar:
    Unlocking the Secrets of Great Site Navigation
    Online Card Sorting + Tree Testing
    July 13th, 2011

2. Webinar Overview
Introductions & Goals
What is Card Sorting?
Why is it useful and poweful?
How to run remote (online) CS research
What is Tree Testing?
Why is it useful and poweful?
How to run remote (online) TT research
The Benefits of Combining Both Methods
3. Introductions
Ania Rodriguez
Founder and CEO at
Key Lime Interactive
Alfonso de la Nuez
Co-Founder, Co-CEO
at UserZoom
Kim Oslob
Dtor. Client Services
at UserZoom
4. 4 quick facts about UserZoom
Leading SaaS company specializing in Online UX Research
We help businesses create excellent user experiences
Our software solution includes 8 different tools to run UX research
Around for about 9 years, offices in Sunnyvale (CA), Cheshire (UK) and Barcelona (Spain)
5. About Key Lime Interactive

  • Experienced market research and usability professionals

6. Over 12 years of consulting experience testing Internet 500 websites and providing actionable results 7. Most consultants have Masters in Human-Computer Interaction, Psychology, Industry Engineering or related field 8. Cross-Industry Expertise 9. Ability to scorecard against competition 10. Ability to suggest cross-industry recommendations to improve ease of use 11. Independent Third Party 12. Impartial with no-hidden agenda 13. Ability to work with business team and developers to get everyone onboardExpert Reviews
14. Webinar Goals
The WHAT: Understand relationships between items and groups. Defining naming structures. Ensuring navigational structure is optimized.
The WHY: Benefits of using each method together or independently.
The HOW: Understand how to create and collect data in a short period of time using an online remote method.
15. Before we begin, lets take a quick poll to get to know you better
16. What is Card Sorting?
17. Typical scenario
John is an Information Architect working on a redesign of a website. Part of it includes to clearly redefine the items under each menu.
Internally theyve not been able to agree with one optimal way to categorize information.
So he wants to ensure the category labels that theyve created are easy to understand for their customers and visitors
How does Card Sorting help?
18. Card Sorting:Definition and Benefits
Card sorting is a method to gather insights about how items are categorized naturally in users mental model.There are two types:
Closed Card Sort: Items and Categories are pre-defined
Open Card Sort: Categories are not pre-defined;Users name the categories
It is a useful and powerful to conduct this type of research when:
Visitors to your site or application are having a hard time finding the right information
Web analytics data shows that your participants are going in circles
Convergence data is lower than desired
19. How to Read Dendograms
Linkage Distance
Choose clusters that are as compact and
distinct as possible.

  • Compactness - how similar the elements of a cluster are to one another

20. Distinctness how different one cluster is from its closest neighborThe compactness of a cluster represents the minimum distance at which the cluster comes into existence. The horizontal axis of the dendrogram measures the distance between clusters. If a cluster contains only one observation, its compactness is 0.
The distinctness of a cluster is the distance along the X-axis from the point at which it comes into existence to the point at which it is aggregated into a larger cluster.
21. What an Online Card Sort looks like
Participants organize and group items according to association
Items are grouped under category names that make sense to participants to be located in
22. Card Sort Pilot Study
Participants grouped brands, ordering info, account info, and savings into distinct groups.
Floaters were detected indicating possible presence in two categories.
At least one runt indicated lack of understanding of the association and/or meaning
23. Card Sort Study(Closed)
Participants placed items into these distinct groups: Ink & Toner, Specials, CopyPrint, My Account, and Customer Service.
Floaters were detected indicating possible presence in two categories.
24. Example of How to Use Card Sort Results
25. Lets take poll #2 now!
26. What is Tree Testing?
27. Typical scenario
Prior to creating a prototype, John wants to ensure that customers will be able to navigate the new site structure successfully.
With the stakeholders there are high expectations that the new design will increase purchasing conversion.
This conversion is based on findability.
How does Tree Testing help?
28. Why is it a useful and poweful research method
Tree Testing allows you to visually test the navigation and findability of your site structure.
Detects navigational issues early on prior to building a prototype or dynamic site.
29. What an Online Tree Testing looks like
Participant locates where they would find and item in a site structure
Participant selects items once found or navigates through a different path until found
UserZoom calculates percentages of first, all attempts, success and error.
30. Tree Testing Pilot Study
When asked to locate a mouse pad, only 42% of the participants were successful on first attempt.
It took 54% of the participants multiple attempts to locate the mouse pad under Computers > Computer Accessories
Ninety-Six participants were successful in total.
31. Tree Testing Pilot Study
Common areas of error were Paper & Pads (26%) and Office Supplies (54%)
Secondary areasof error were Ink & Toner(10%) and Copy & Print (6%)
32. Tree Testing Pilot Study
When asked to locate a 3-ring binder, 58% of the participants were successful on first attempt.
It took 38% of the participants multiple attempts to locate the 3-ring binder under Binders & Accessories > Non-View Binders
Ninety-Six participants were successful in total.
33. Tree Testing Pilot Study
Common areas of error were Paper & Pads (24%) and Copy & Print (10%)
Secondary areaof error was Copy & Print (10%)
34. Tree Testing Pilot Study
Participants rated locating a 3-ring binder as slightly easier than a mouse pad.
It took 20% more of the participants multiple attempts to locate a mouse pad.
Locate Mouse Pads
Locate3- Ring Binder
35. The Benefits of Combining Both Methods
36. The Benefits of Combining Both Methods
Define the groupings and menu categories from a Card Sort
Define the site structure from the results of the Card Sort and validate through the Tree Test
Ensure more reliable site navigation by combining the methods
37. Q&A
38. Please dont go yet! Lets take the final poll
39. Thanks so much for your time!
Check out our upcoming news and events at
UserZoom (USA)
440 N. Wolfe Rd. Sunnyvale,
CA 94085
Phone: +1 (408) 524 7445
Contact: Alfonso de la Nuez
Key Lime Interactive
1221 Brickell Avenue
MiamiFL 33131
Phone: 1 (305) 804 2930
Contact: Ania Rodriguez


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