Category Archives: toolkit

Heuristic evaluation – a starting point

heuristic evaluation - louise ventris [usability, homepage, navigation, forms, feedback, search, content and trust]

Heuristic evaluation is often a good starting point on the outset of a new project and especially when you’ve got little data or research to work from. It’s also a great way of quickly getting familiar with a product, service or site

There are a number of ways to run a heuristic evaluation – ideally I like to work with a standard framework, which I will vary depending on the platform or device.

If you’re in a position to enlist others to help it can give a more balanced view of the product and it’s also a great way to bring the team together to consider the project.

I’ve pulled together a google sheet as a Heuristic evaluation framework which covers items I like to check in each of the following area.


  • Is the purpose of the site immediately obvious
  • Are the main user tasks easily reached from the homepage


  • Can the user read the text easily [contrast, size of font]


  • Is the site navigation simple to use [consistent and standard position]
  • User can easily locate where they are with in a site


  • Is the content easily readable up to date and accurate
  • It is easy for a customer to cancel a purchase, service etc


  • Does the content uses plain english [jargon free and appropriate for the audience]
  • Is content easily readable [well labelled and chunked]


  • Are search results well presented and provide accurate ranking
  • Are search results relevant to the device [not linked to a desktop site from a mobile search]


  • Forms are broken down in to clearly understood sections