A recent blog post from Expedia recounts an interview with Scott Jones who heads their User Experience lab.
- The lab conducts tests directly with customers, using eye-tracking and facial-movement technology to measure what people are looking at and why.
- Objectives are:
- Better understand what customers want, so they can be moved from browsing to booking more easily
- Make Expedia’s sites and mobile apps more efficient and user-friendly
- Increase customers’ confidence and delight
- Researchers use electromyography (EMG) technology to produce data that serve as a surrogate for emotion, by detecting subtle changes in facial expression in response to changes in the user’s experience while interacting with Expedia’s sites and apps.
Example: Paralysis by analysis is a problem for customers trying to design a trip. So when a customer is able to eliminate an option (e.g., a specific hotel) from the many available choices, the EMG data show a significant “spike of delight” believed to be related to the progress made toward the ultimate trip plan.
See the related article “Expedia campaign for Hawaii Tourism Authority uses facial recognition to personalize Web content”.