The Pain and Gain of Taxonomy User Testing

As a taxonomy consultant, I always recommend (rather, urge with great gravitas) to my clients that they reserve some time and budget for adequate user testing. As they say, the proof is in the pudding: there’s nothing better than quantitative data to tell you whether you’ve built a structure that really resonates with your core audiences and facilitates their tasks. Creating a taxonomy without testing is putting a lot of faith in guessing – albeit, usually pretty good guessing, based on industry experience and knowledge of best practices if you have a good taxonomist.

Having done user testing on taxonomies I’ve built a few times, I compare the feeling to what I imagine it’s like a being an actor or actress watching yourself in a film.

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