Lorem Ipsum: Keep It Consistent

At User Insight we utilize prototypes for user testing often. Prototypes are a great way to “fake it before you make it” and test concepts quickly before investing too much work. Recently I tested a prototype that mixed lorem ipsum and english text throughout the prototype. At first glance it didn’t seem like a big deal to mix text. However, after we started walking people through the experience, it became a huge speed bump in the test.

Why? The lorem ipsum used was a highlighted quote on the page, the design and goal of the page was focused on highlighting that text. People were confused at the mash up of english they could read in the article right next to a gibberish quote highlighted on the page.

My Recommendation: If you must use lorem ipsum, keep it consistent. Lorem Ipsum is a great way to focus people on the design and layout when you don’t have content. If you have text to pull from that is appropriate, use english and make sure you’re using it throughout that particular experience rather than mixing and forcing people to adjust between what’s readable vs not. You’ll get better feedback because people won’t get stuck on pointing out text they can read vs text they can’t.


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