Clickpath analysis may have value that needs to be complimented by contextual systems analysis (e.g. user research, ethnographic research). This may mean that we need both clickpath and contextual systems analysis to compliment each other to understand the big picture.
Clickpath analysis poses that if we study the patterns in the log of user interaction sequence of users on a particular interactive environment. The value proposed is that we can use this information to adjust designs.
I can understand the value but we need to contextualize the findings. Where was the user while using this? What were the environmental and human factors involved? What is the platform and the input/selection tools? What are the contextual user needs and goals?
The value of clickpath does not negate the value of the other user-centered design processes. These methods are complimentary and I believe should alternate constantly to generate different perspectives contributing towards a multispective understanding of the entire system.
Patterns within patterns
Mass-patterns of use may contain nested-patterns of use. These nested patterns may be correlated to specific groups of users with specific patterns of needs and goals.
In other words, one value of clickpath analysis may be the discovery of emerging patterns of users after a product is out in the market.
These new patterns may lead to the identification of emergent user personas.
After we identify the new groups of users we may need to go out and use one of the contextual systems analysis methods (e.g. ethnography, human factors research) to understand the variables that lead to the emergence of new use patterns and new user personas.
This is where new, user-defined value, and innovation opportunities may be.
Keyword: Daniel Montano, Dan Montano, user experience design, information architect