Usability

How easily and effectively people can accomplish their goals using a product or system, while having a positive experience.

Usability refers to the measurement of how easily a user can accomplish their goals when using a service. This is usually measured through established research methodologies under the term “usability testing,” which includes success rates and customer satisfaction. Usability is one part of the larger user experience (UX) umbrella. While UX encompasses designing the overall experience of a product, usability focuses on the mechanics of making sure products work as well as possible for the user.

21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (21st Century IDEA) and M-23-22

21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (21st Century IDEA) and M-23-22

Resources on Usability

  • An introduction to content

    Best practices for creating clear, useful, digital content for federal websites and digital services.

  • Usability Testing with Steve Krug

    Get started making usability fixes to your website or product.

  • Department of Homeland Security: Usability Testing Kit

    A resource with four approaches to help federal employees perform usability testing.

  • 18F Methods

    A collection of tools that describe how teams can put human-centered design into practice.

  • Usability Starter Kit

    Here are some tools and templates to help you create better user experiences.

  • Fueleconomy.gov – Extended Case Study

    Like any valid business decision, User Experience work should produce results and demonstrable impact. To see a list of screenshots from websites we’ve improved, visit the rest of our Usability Case Studies. Or see a more complete case study below. Case Study: Fueleconomy.gov Mobile Site In December of 2012

  • Government Usability Case Studies

    This list of government usability case studies shows how government sites, mobile apps and other products become more effective, more coherent and more usable by focusing on the User Experience of their customers. Want to be featured here? Just email us. National Cancer Institute Persona

Join a Community of Practice

Usability events

Making sense: Cognition, perception, and design
Watch Video

Hosted by Digital.gov and the U.S. Web Design System

2023
Join the Design System team as we tackle your most commonly-asked questions.
Watch Video

Hosted by Digital.gov and the U.S. Web Design System

2023

Usability news

Why the American People Deserve a Digital Government

OMB released new policy guidance for government that includes a variety of actions and standards to help federal agencies design, develop, and deliver modern websites and digital services. Memo M-23-22, Delivering a Digital-First Public Experience, will make it seamless for the public to obtain government information and services online, and help agencies fully implement the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (21st Century IDEA). — via The White House

The White House logo

Sep 22, 2023

Resources on Usability

  • An introduction to content

    Best practices for creating clear, useful, digital content for federal websites and digital services.

  • Usability Testing with Steve Krug

    Get started making usability fixes to your website or product.

  • Department of Homeland Security: Usability Testing Kit

    A resource with four approaches to help federal employees perform usability testing.

  • 18F Methods

    A collection of tools that describe how teams can put human-centered design into practice.

  • Usability Starter Kit

    Here are some tools and templates to help you create better user experiences.

  • Fueleconomy.gov – Extended Case Study

    Like any valid business decision, User Experience work should produce results and demonstrable impact. To see a list of screenshots from websites we’ve improved, visit the rest of our Usability Case Studies. Or see a more complete case study below. Case Study: Fueleconomy.gov Mobile Site In December of 2012

  • Government Usability Case Studies

    This list of government usability case studies shows how government sites, mobile apps and other products become more effective, more coherent and more usable by focusing on the User Experience of their customers. Want to be featured here? Just email us. National Cancer Institute Persona

More News and Events on Usability

130 posts

Why the American People Deserve a Digital Government

OMB released new policy guidance for government that includes a variety of actions and standards to help federal agencies design, develop, and deliver modern websites and digital services. Memo M-23-22, Delivering a Digital-First Public Experience, will make it seamless for the public to obtain government information and services online, and help agencies fully implement the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (21st Century IDEA). — via The White House

The White House logo

Sep 22, 2023

Making sense: Cognition, perception, and design
Watch Video

Hosted by Digital.gov and the U.S. Web Design System

2023

Testing Beta for Accessibility

The USAGov team strives to ensure all our websites are accessible to as many people as possible. This includes those who need the use of specialized assistive technologies when browsing the internet. In building beta.USA.gov we deliberately validated that it met Section 508 and WCAG 2.0 compliance requirements. Our testing approach includes a three step hybrid method that may be suitable for other agency use. — via USA.gov

USA.gov logo

Mar 16, 2023

Join the Design System team as we tackle your most commonly-asked questions.
Watch Video

Hosted by Digital.gov and the U.S. Web Design System

2023