Measuring the Usability Index of Your Web Site

by Benjamin Keevil of Keevil & Associates in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Here is the World Wide Web version of the paper, "Measuring the Usability Index of Your Web Site", presented at SIGDOC98, the annual Special Interest Group on Systems Documentation conference in Quebec City, Province of Quebec, Canada, September 24 to 26, 1998. The theme of the conference is Scaling the Heights: The Future of Information Technology.

The paper describes the development of a checklist that you can use to measure the usability index of your Web site. The checklist has over 200 questions in five categories:

  1. Finding the information
  2. Understanding the information
  3. Supporting user tasks
  4. Evaluating the technical accuracy
  5. Presenting the information

Displaying and Downloading the Checklist

Using your browser, you can:

If you download the Microsoft Excel version of the checklist, you can use the Excel spreadsheet to calculate the usability index based on your answers to the questions. You can also add and delete questions to better fit the requirements of your own Web sites.

In the collaborative spirit of the Web, feel free to modify and use the checklist for your own research; however, if you sell the checklist please contact Benjamin Keevil at and we will make a small donation to a charity. Any suggestions to improve the checklist would be appreciated.

Contents of Measuring the Usability Index of Your Web Site

To display a topic, click on one of the following links:

  1. Introduction
  2. Related Research
  3. Developing the Checklist
  4. Measuring the Usability of Your Web Site
    1. Displaying and Downloading the Checklist
    2. Determining the Purpose and Style
    3. Asking the Questions
    4. Answering the Questions
  5. Summary