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Help panel and homepage: provide suggested answers as users type their question
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Description

Note: this concept also applies to the help module on the newcomer homepage.

This task is a proposed enhancement to first provide a automated list of suggested answers to users when they ask a question in the Editor help panel.

User story

When I am asking a specific question to try and learn how to edit in an article...
...I want to be provided with potential answer as soon as possible...
...so that I can complete my edit (without having to wait for a response).

Rationale for this proposal

  • Users can solve their problems faster on their own without depending a response
  • Potentially reduces volume of questions being posted

General requirements

  • Platform: This feature will eventually need to exist for both desktop and mobile. Desktop should be built and deployed first.
  • Languages: KO and CS (Growth team's target wikis)
  • Target users of the help panel: Determined by business rules defined on T206716
  • Eventlogging: This feature will need to be instrumented with EventLogging for all interactions.

Proposed feature design + requirements

  • Mocks: Invision (clickable) prototype at https://wikimedia.invisionapp.com/share/XSP2H5Z7ZMY#/screens/330930099 (Click/Tap on this task in the contents screen to view the relevant mocks)
  • Notes on the design:
    • To bring up the suggested answers screen, the user has entered text into the "ask a question" text-area field on the initial help panel and selected to "Submit" the query
    • If there is at least 1 matching result in the Help pages, the result(s) will be shown in the Suggested answers screen (I.e., if there are no results, users should directly to the confirm question step as detailed in T209318)
    • If the user selects "Yes, post this question", they will be taken to the confirm question step as detailed in T209318
    • If the user selects "No" (they no longer need help), they will be returned to the default Help panel

Event Timeline

RHo created this task.Nov 13 2018, 12:24 AM
Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptNov 13 2018, 12:24 AM
MMiller_WMF renamed this task from Provide suggested answers first to users who ask a question in the Editor help pane. to Help pane: provide suggested answers as users type their question.Nov 13 2018, 11:18 PM
MMiller_WMF edited projects, added Growth-Team; removed Growth-Team (Current Sprint).

If there is at least 1 matching result in the Help pages

I would require some testing and editing from the communities, to determine if a given help page is relevant, or if that page has enough keywords that would match. De we have a plan for that, @MMiller_WMF?

If the user selects "No" (they no longer need help), they will be returned to the default Help pane

What if the page that has been suggested is not what they were looking for? Is the user still in the help pane? If so, will the question (which can sometimes be very long) will be kept somewhere to be posted? If not, what is the end process?

RHo added a comment.Nov 14 2018, 2:35 PM

If there is at least 1 matching result in the Help pages

I would require some testing and editing from the communities, to determine if a given help page is relevant, or if that page has enough keywords that would match. De we have a plan for that, @MMiller_WMF?

An initial version of this could just include all Help pages and use the existing search capability to see the number of people who look at suggested answers.

If the user selects "No" (they no longer need help), they will be returned to the default Help pane

What if the page that has been suggested is not what they were looking for? Is the user still in the help pane? If so, will the question (which can sometimes be very long) will be kept somewhere to be posted? If not, what is the end process?

Do you mean if the user selects to view one of the 'suggested answer' links? If they click on suggested answer A, they see the answer open in a new tab so the help pane, edit state and entered query is not lost.

Trizek-WMF updated the task description. (Show Details)Nov 14 2018, 4:30 PM

Do you mean if the user selects to view one of the 'suggested answer' links? If they click on suggested answer A, they see the answer open in a new tab so the help pane, edit state and entered query is not lost.

Got it. Let's hope that people will notice the tab.

JTannerWMF moved this task from Inbox to Q2 2019-20 on the Growth-Team board.Nov 14 2018, 7:05 PM
kostajh moved this task from Q2 2019-20 to FY 2019-20 on the Growth-Team board.Nov 29 2018, 6:18 PM
MMiller_WMF renamed this task from Help pane: provide suggested answers as users type their question to Help panel: provide suggested answers as users type their question.Nov 29 2018, 7:18 PM
MMiller_WMF updated the task description. (Show Details)
JTannerWMF moved this task from FY 2019-20 to Q2 2019-20 on the Growth-Team board.Jan 3 2019, 3:54 PM
MMiller_WMF renamed this task from Help panel: provide suggested answers as users type their question to Help panel and homepage: provide suggested answers as users type their question.May 14 2019, 4:36 PM
MMiller_WMF updated the task description. (Show Details)
MMiller_WMF edited projects, added Growth-Team (Current Sprint); removed Growth-Team.
MMiller_WMF added subscribers: Cntlsn, nettrom_WMF, Catrope and 4 others.

After the Growth offsite in April 2019, we thought about whether we care more about providing self-help quickly, or providing human-to-human help, and which path we encourage users to go down. We know that different kinds of users need different kinds of (one piece of evidence is the difference in usage between Korean, Czech, and Vietnamese Wikipedias).

This task's idea has become: combine the search and question workflows into one thing. The user would type their question and it searches (just like the existing search feature), and then they have the option to ask the question if they don't like the search results.

Some reasons why we think this could be a good idea:

  • When we added search to the help panel, it largely cannibalized the number of users asking questions. We also know that less than 50% of searchers click a result. And we know that those people do not fall back on asking their question. They just leave the help panel. So this combined workflow might encourage more users to ask questions if their search fails to get them a good result.
  • Our mobile homepage tests showed a few users expecting a search or searchable FAQs in the help module, which it currently doesn't have on the homepage.
  • We can improve search separately as needed, potentially restricting the search to just the help desk, if we think that will get the user the best results.

Other notes:

  • We should be mindful of whether this encourages users to just post help panel questions that are search terms. For instance, we don't want to cause a lot of questions that are just "photo".
  • We should think about whether this endeavor has any effect on the mentorship module.

Just noting this problem with namespace searching: T223537

JTannerWMF moved this task from Needs triage to Triaged on the Mobile board.Jun 12 2019, 2:42 AM
RHo added a comment.Jul 26 2019, 3:50 PM

After the Growth offsite in April 2019, we thought about whether we care more about providing self-help quickly, or providing human-to-human help, and which path we encourage users to go down. We know that different kinds of users need different kinds of (one piece of evidence is the difference in usage between Korean, Czech, and Vietnamese Wikipedias).
This task's idea has become: combine the search and question workflows into one thing. The user would type their question and it searches (just like the existing search feature), and then they have the option to ask the question if they don't like the search results.

hi @MMiller_WMF - I've created a separate task T229108 that enables someone to post their search query as a question is the search results are no good. The reason is that this task and associated mocks are really the opposite flow, which is about directing users in the middle of asking a question to get help if it is detected that good match for their query already exists. So for example, if someone asks "how do I add an image?" and there's a good existing answer, then users have the option to immediately get self-help without posting the question.

I think there is a case for both these tasks (search no matching result -> ask question, and ask question -> matched search result), but would agree that the former case now outlined in T229108 is higher priority.

Note, there is some prior art with the German wikipedia version of the help panel from a few years ago that we might want to reference and learn from.

I'm also interested to think about restricting search only to the community help desk pages and subpages, as the users might find the question terms and answers easier than searching the Help namespace.

Thanks for the reminder, @kostajh. At Hackathon, I learned from @Bmueller that @daniel worked on the German help panel, and we could potentially ask him for help if we need it at some point. This is the project page: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Teestube/Konzept

daniel added a comment.Sun, Aug 4, 6:58 PM

Thanks for the reminder, @kostajh. At Hackathon, I learned from @Bmueller that @daniel worked on the German help panel, and we could potentially ask him for help if we need it at some point. This is the project page: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Teestube/Konzept

I did the technical spec, but I didn't implement it. We contract HalloWelt for the coding. But I'm happy to discuss what I remember of the project.