PurposeThis paper discusses the differences in search pattern transitions for mobile phone, tablet and desktop devices by mining the transaction log data of a library online public access catalogue (OPAC). We aimed to analyze the impacts of different devices on user search behavior and provide constructive suggestions for the development of library OPACs on different devices.Design/methodology/approachBased on transaction logs which are 9 GB in size and contain 16,140,509 records of a university library OPAC, statistics and clustering were used to analyze the differences in search pattern transitions on different devices in terms of two aspects: search field transition patterns and query reformulation patterns.FindingsSearch field transition patterns are influenced by the input function and user interfaces of different devices. As reformulation times increase, the differences between query reformulation patterns among different devices decrease.Practical implicationsMobile-side libraries need to optimize user interfaces, for example by setting web page labels and improving input capabilities. Desk-side libraries can add more suggestive content on the interface.Originality/valueUnlike previous studies, which have analyzed web search, this paper focuses on library OPAC search. The search function of mobile phones, tablets and desktops were found to be asymptotic, which was a good illustration of how devices have a large impact on user search behavior.
The Electronic Library – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 7, 2017