Constituent Expectations of State Websites vs. Federal Websites

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Steve Ressler 5 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #175575

    Jennifer Smith

    Does anyone know of articles or reports that outline the different expectations constituents have for federal sites vs. state sites? Do they expect more interactivity from one, or more customized information? Is user behavior different between the two?

    Any other thoughts or anecdotal experience is welcome, too.


  • #175583

    Steve Ressler

    Good question.

    Some anecdotal thoughts – The company NIC runs most of the top state sites and I’d look at those sites for ideas –,, – they do extensive user testing so I think they’ve nailed what constituents want for state sites.

    As a citizen, I think state websites are more transaction driven – go to renew drivers license, fishing license, etc. While federal sites are less transaction oriented and often information driven (how do I get info on X)

  • #175581

    Jennifer Smith

    Thank you! Awesome feedback. It’s nice to get out of your own head on these kind of matters and hear what other people know/experience.

    I’ll be checking out all of those resources this week!

  • #175579

    Nick Wright

    We’ve just completed an audit of the writing style of 100 documents on Federal Government websites. It showed only 5 percent of documents were in plain English. The average grade level, for instance, was 16 – rather than the under 12 recommended by most authorities.

    The audit has information on a host of writing measures. I’m currently writing up the results, but if you or anyone else wants to see the data, I’m more than happy to send a copy of the spreadsheet. Alternatively, I’ll also send you the full audit report when I have finished writing them up.

    For a copy of the data, email me at [email protected]

    Nick Wright

  • #175577

    Jennifer Smith

    That sounds like it’s going to be a really great report! I’d love to see it when you are finished.

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