Re: Context sensitive pop-ups

Subject: Re: Context sensitive pop-ups
From: Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L Writing <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 5 Sep 2017 10:54:40 -0700

When it's useful to have a CSH link for a field, option, or other UI
element, I use the same help call as for page-level help calls.
Sometimes the target should be an anchor within a topic rather than
the top of the topic.

It can also be helpful to embed a CSH call to the relevant anchor in
the tooltip.

Implementing an in-between CSH call somewhere between a tooltip and
the full online help system seems to me beyond the point of
diminishing returns. If the information the customer wants isn't
there, how many clicks does it take to get to the relevant topic in
the full system?

"One of the pain points for both customers and support is that
frequently information they need is buried in a procedure topic
sometimes as drop-down text."

Lose the collapsed text.

As a user, I've always found drop-down text in help topics a terrible
idea. I can't skim to find the information I need, and in some cases
the search missed hits in collapsed text. What's the user benefit that
offsets that?

On Tue, Sep 5, 2017 at 12:45 AM, yehoshua paul <ysp10182 -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:
> Okay, I just made up the term in the subject line. If it already exists and
> I'm using it correctly then yay for me. If not then keep reading and I'll
> explain.
> TL:DR I want to add pop-ups with help content to our system. My boss wants
> to know what other companies do.
>
> I am looking for various ways to improve our customer's experience when it
> comes to finding the information they need while using our system. We have
> a web-based SaaS software application for travel companies. I use Robohelp
> 2015 to create a responsive online help.
> One of the pain points for both customers and support is that frequently
> information they need is buried in a procedure topic sometimes as drop-down
> text.
> Example: We have a corporate client account page. The page has five
> expanders in which you can enter various information and activate certain
> options for the account. Our customer needs to know additional information
> on a specific option on that page. This information is often 2-4 clicks
> away, sometimes hidden as drop-down text.
> Why?
> The user first needs to open the online help (first click)
> The context sensitive topic contains a general overview of the page with
> links to relevant procedures and a reference topic listing all the fields
> and options on the page.
> The user then does one of the following:
>
> - (Hopefully) opens the link to the correct topic (second click),
> scrolls, and finds information.
> - Searches for the field (second click), in the search results, opens
> the correct topic (third click), scrolls and finds the information).
> - Opens the index (second click), finds the keyword for the field and
> clicks on the correct entry to see a list of topics (third click), opens
> the correct topic (hopefully), (fourth click), scrolls and finds the
> information.
>
> I would like to reduce this to one click.
> I am on the product team. I can make changes to our system pending approval
> from my boss.
> I proposed the following change:
> Next to specific fields and options in our system, we will add an icon.
> When users click on the icon a pop-up will open listing all the relevant
> information on that field. This will not be a tooltip. We already have
> tooltips. Tooltips are short, and when you move the mouse, it disappears.
> The pop-ups will be for fields and options that contain a paragraph or more
> of information, and users can close them when they are done reading.
> Therefore, I have dubbed them "context sensitive pop-ups."
> The change should be easy to implement, as this is basically UI work. The
> main issue will be maintenance when information needs to be changed in the
> pop-up, but again since this is UI, it won't be a lot of work for
> developers, and it doesn't happen that frequently.
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