Documentation and consumer information

Documentation and consumer information refers to any piece of promotional or support information that accompanies a product or service. This includes information that is made available before purchase, during the ordering process or provided to the customer along with the product or service. This includes instruction manuals, quick start guides and product information. It may be provided in print, online, by telephone or built into the product. It may be in the form of text, graphics or audiovisual.

Consumers are presented on a daily basis with an abundance of information through media, the internet, mobile communications and other sources. An overload of information on products and services can cause considerable confusion. When information is clear, concise and understandable, it not only supports usability, it makes the entire customer experience more positive and enjoyable.

Products and services that have been designed to address a range of needs can in fact be made unusable if the information that accompanies them is itself not accessible and understandable. Documentation and consumer information is therefore a key catalyst for ensuring that a product or service is universally designed.