Inquiring citizens

Who they are

Infrequent visitors to our site who search for unbiased facts about topical issues. They want simply worded, visually engaging summaries, charts and infographics. Data can help make informal decisions about pensions and investments.

They engage on social media and browse with smartphones or tablets.

Likely to say

“I want to find unbiased information so that I can verify the key points of what I see on the news and Facebook.”

What motivates them

They want to find out more about a topical issue they have seen on the news, such as house prices or immigration. Many want to track financial investments and follow changes to indexes like RPI or CPI.

Others want to find out about their local area or are looking for information to help with their studies.

They have an enquiring mind – engaging titles and images will spark their interest.

They distrust big business and government, and are looking for a trustworthy source to verify news.

What they want

Inquiring citizens want to:

  • find unbiased information to verify facts given by non-government organisations or political parties
  • find content with clear data points such as high-level summaries
  • see visually engaging content
  • quote or share links to content
  • see an overview of trends
  • find written reports useful for putting numbers into context

Behaviour and preferences

They will often arrive at a web page via eye-catching links from email alerts or social media. They will ring the contact centre to help find information. They will often share infographics.

How they find information

They access the ONS website on an infrequent basis from laptops at home. They will use mobile devices where following ONS on social media.

They don’t tend to download and save any content. Where they do, they’re more comfortable with spreadsheets and PDFs.

What they like

  • Clear links to “popular” data.
  • Being able to drill down to their local area.
  • Being able to browse a website with ease.
  • Interactive content.
  • Intuitive labels and utilities.

What they don’t like

  • Unclear naming conventions, which they can find confusing.
  • Regular changes to the format or location of data.
  • Language that is too complex.
  • The impression of any bias or agenda.
  • Having to rely on downloads to make data clear.