I’ve been setting up and testing multiple browsers, virtual machines and doing some heavy duty virus clean up recently. As a geek and tech support I don’t mind going through steps to get to a solution or finish a setup. But, I don’t like unnecessarily complicated steps.
An example is Firefox Sync. You have to jump through hoops to get it to work. Once you set up the username and password you setup a pass key too. Okay, that’s not bad and good security, but wait until you want to set up Sync with a new install of Firefox on a different computer at a different location. You are in for a headache when Firefox asks for 3, three digit codes that you to enter on the original machine. If it is not around you need all your info or are asked to reset the pass key. Too much work to just sync my data.
The easy way? Migrate to Google Chrome. Yes Google has THE easiest sync setup, just sync with your Google account. It takes all of 2 minutes after entering your credentials. While there are folks that don’t like the big bad Google, the ease of integration is a major advantage.
One Firefox extension I would like to give ease of use kudos to is Xmarks. I have had an account with them for a while and it has made transferring Firefox to another computer quite easy. It is an extension that you do have to install after finishing the Firefox setup, which adds steps and complexity. That problem is Mozilla’s fault not Xmarks.
If you aren’t writing you apps or making your site easy to use, you are losing business and will eventually be left in the dust by an upstart like Google or Facebook. Remember they were not the leaders in their fields right away. They got there by ease of use for the average user.
To sum it up with an age old saying: KISS.