Comparison of library website function access tools 2014–2018
Performance Measurement and Metrics
Article publication date: 25 June 2021
Issue publication date: 16 August 2021
Four years after the release of a responsive design website that provides a dynamic screen layout across three access devices (computer, tablet and smartphone), a repeat study was conducted to determine changes in the way that library website functions are and are not accessed.
A survey, similar to the original study, was used to determine the rate of access of 20 website functions by three access devices (computer, tablet and smartphone) and a “did not use” (DNU) category. A two-proportion Z-test was used to determine significant differences in the rate of access for each website function and the “did not use” (DNU) category by each access device from 2014 to 2018.
The computer is still the primary tool used to access website functions, but its rate of use is declining, while access via the smartphone is increasing, including research and for learning functions traditionally accessed only by computer. Access by tablet, with poor website function access rates in 2014, declined in use, with some rates approaching zero. Increases in the DNU category for website functions occurred, but reasons why were not determined. The increases raised questions about the relevance of some of the website functions and if other actions are needed to increase use.
Repeating the 2014 study provided insights into the changing landscape of device preferences for accessing library website functions. The number of significant changes identified demonstrates the importance of recurring studies to determine how online access to library website functions evolves over time.
The authors wish to acknowledge student research assistants Brad Hill and Jimmy Hernandez for their work on the assessment leading to this paper.
Zaugg, H. and Rennick, B. (2021), "Comparison of library website function access tools 2014–2018", Performance Measurement and Metrics, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 149-158. https://doi.org/10.1108/PMM-01-2021-0004
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