Engagement levels are extremely important for a site whose primary purpose is content delivery. If the content isn’t engaging, the site will fail. Site engagement is extremely important for product managers, content strategists and customer service people, alike. To rate the sites in Engagement, our judges used the following principles:
Scott: The Android User Guides site does a fairly good job of engaging the user. It’s certainly enjoyable (in that it is not a struggle to find and utilize relevant content) and attractive. Users are provided with some additional information about the content (including cues as to when the content was last updated, and comments about the accuracy) but it could be made far more useful and engaging. Adding curated and related content would be a big plus. The way it stands, everything on the site is still presented in a book model — hierarchical information structures don’t translate del to the web. The Android User Guides site could be improved (made more useful) if each topic recommended contextually relevant content (like tutorials and articles) in-line, while the user is learning how a particular feature of the Android OS works. This pairing of related information would go along way toward assist users in becoming Android ninjas.
Maxwell: Although much of the content was initially posted some months ago, there is a link for seeing “updates” and it actually lists what has changed where/when. I use a DROID, so it was somewhat easier for me to judge relevance, but I am familiar with the iPhone from peripheral hands on.
Scott: The iPhone User Guides site fails to engage the users in many ways. While the content of the manuals themselves is presented in typical Apple fashion, the useful information is locked up inside PDF files. Engagement is limited to accessing and reading a PDF. No related information is suggested (or made available). Finding content is left up to the user. It’s not a great experience. I expect better from Apple.
Maxwell: Again, limited to PDF on my devices, I had no access to any notice of how/when content was updated. (This *might* be available as an iBook, but I doubt it.) The overall look n’ feel of the iPhone doc was very “traditional technical documentation” and did not seem to reflect the new, socially driven media the iPhone helps to drive.