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David Lee King

Kicking Users Out the Door



Goodbye.When you request a book using OCLC’s Worldcat service, here’s what happens after you complete a request – you are presented with this message: “Your resource sharing request was sent successfully. Goodbye.”

What was that again?

Goodbye.

Is that REALLY the message OCLC wants to send after someone has requested a book through their service? Goodbye? What if I had another request to make? Nope – Goodbye. That’s all you can do here. Please leave now.

In essence, that’s what OCLC is saying to customers using Worldcat. For that matter, what does “resource sharing request” even mean? Will that make sense to the average library user? Probably not.

Let’s help OCLC out. What message SHOULD they be sending to their visitors? What should this page say and do? Let’s have some brainstorming here!

Here’s my take: at the bare minimum, they should remove the word “goodbye” and make that “Return to Item Information” link up at the top of the page larger/more visible. Compare that to Amazon’s large orange buttons that give directional cues, like “Add to Shopping Cart.” They are highly visible and highly directional at the same time. I’d probably also put that reworded “Return to Item Information” link in the middle of the page.

So – other thoughts?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • http://libraryadmin.wordpress.com/ Rob

    If we used a retail model, we would do everything we could to keep them on the site. On several sites I purchase from regularly, once you have sent your order and received the confirmation, you are still given a chance to “return to shopping.” Two different sites where you purchase CD’s ask about 3 times if you really want to quit or did you mean to continue shopping. Obviously, in a more elegant way than that, but that is the intent. In fact, on a lot of sites the “logoff” function is pretty small and non-descript. I would think something along the line of, “Thank you for requesting this item. Would you like to request another?” With a large “yes” button and a smaller “no” button.

  • http://libraryadmin.wordpress.com Rob

    If we used a retail model, we would do everything we could to keep them on the site. On several sites I purchase from regularly, once you have sent your order and received the confirmation, you are still given a chance to “return to shopping.” Two different sites where you purchase CD’s ask about 3 times if you really want to quit or did you mean to continue shopping. Obviously, in a more elegant way than that, but that is the intent. In fact, on a lot of sites the “logoff” function is pretty small and non-descript. I would think something along the line of, “Thank you for requesting this item. Would you like to request another?” With a large “yes” button and a smaller “no” button.

  • GinaP

    Has this been tested using other accounts? I just used my library’s WorldCat access to request a title and after the user clicks on “submit,” the interfaces returns to the record for the item just requested with a note at the top of the window reading “your resource sharing request was sent successfully.”

    It sounds, to me, like a bit of bug or, worse, a library’s individual administrative settings within FirstSearch.

    I agree, “goodbye” shouldn’t be the message. The user should be brought back to their search results so they can continue to identify resources they might want.

  • GinaP

    Has this been tested using other accounts? I just used my library’s WorldCat access to request a title and after the user clicks on “submit,” the interfaces returns to the record for the item just requested with a note at the top of the window reading “your resource sharing request was sent successfully.”

    It sounds, to me, like a bit of bug or, worse, a library’s individual administrative settings within FirstSearch.

    I agree, “goodbye” shouldn’t be the message. The user should be brought back to their search results so they can continue to identify resources they might want.

  • davidleeking

    GinaP – interesting. I was using a normal, new version of Firefox – no settings touched. And… OCLC just sent me a message! Good for them.

  • davidleeking

    GinaP – interesting. I was using a normal, new version of Firefox – no settings touched. And… OCLC just sent me a message! Good for them.

  • davidleeking

    Just tested it using both Firefox 2.0.0.11 and IE 7.0.5730.11 – I get the same thing using both browsers.

  • davidleeking

    Just tested it using both Firefox 2.0.0.11 and IE 7.0.5730.11 – I get the same thing using both browsers.

  • GinaP

    Okay. When using the function from within FirstSearch, it works fine. User is brought to search result with happy “successfully sent” message. When using it from the worldcat.org interface, the “goodbye” screen happens.

    I can’t find anything in my ILL settings (the connection made with the patron request form) that let’s me alter what the patron gets after submitting the request. In the years since this direct request functionality has been available, I have only seen the user directed back to the item record screen; never seen it log off. This is new [and not in a good way] with the worldcat.org platform.

    I’m willing to give OCLC the benefit of the doubt and say this is a [big] oversight in interface design. Why wasn’t the functionality that takes place in the FirstSearch platform fully integrated in the move to the worldcat.org platform?

    This seems quite like a step backward; a loss in usability.

    Apologies for not understanding you were in the worldcat.org platform at the start of this.

  • GinaP

    Okay. When using the function from within FirstSearch, it works fine. User is brought to search result with happy “successfully sent” message. When using it from the worldcat.org interface, the “goodbye” screen happens.

    I can’t find anything in my ILL settings (the connection made with the patron request form) that let’s me alter what the patron gets after submitting the request. In the years since this direct request functionality has been available, I have only seen the user directed back to the item record screen; never seen it log off. This is new [and not in a good way] with the worldcat.org platform.

    I’m willing to give OCLC the benefit of the doubt and say this is a [big] oversight in interface design. Why wasn’t the functionality that takes place in the FirstSearch platform fully integrated in the move to the worldcat.org platform?

    This seems quite like a step backward; a loss in usability.

    Apologies for not understanding you were in the worldcat.org platform at the start of this.

  • http://www.laughinglibrarian.com/ Brian

    Avoid. Library. Jargon.

    Maybe something like …

    “Your request has been sent. What else can we help you find?”

  • http://www.laughinglibrarian.com Brian

    Avoid. Library. Jargon.

    Maybe something like …

    “Your request has been sent. What else can we help you find?”

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