ATO user experience

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The challenge

Previous research revealed that most taxpayers are confident they have the information they need to lodge their returns, yet they get it wrong. To better understand the challenge faced by users of the ATO website, Parisfirst sought to identify:

• how people with a broad range of literacy skills and tax knowledge currently use, find and understand content on the website

• what other information or tools are used by taxpayers to complete and lodge their tax returns

• how content can be improved so that it is understood by a vast and diverse audience

• how the user experience of the website can be improved


Our approach to user experience and content research involved:

• Co-designing quantitative and qualitative research plans with the ATO project team and key stakeholders

Building eight separate online true intent studies based on tax payer audience profiles e.g. first time tax lodgers, rental property owners

• Managing the recruitment of 200 participants across eight different profiles for the online remote study and of 45 participants for the moderated face-to-face study

• Building and monitoring an online Loop11 study for both face-to-face and remote participants

• Conducting one-on-one, in-depth interviews with 40 individual taxpayer participants and 5 tax agents

• Collating and analysing all findings into a comprehensive research report with recommendations. 

Give guidance, no one wants to lodge the wrong way.

Rental property owner


The outcomes of the project include a:

• Detailed understanding of the tax time preparation experience for each audience profile

• Clear recommendations to improve findability and comprehension of content including how to improve SEO and what content formats to develop

• Setting a benchmark of the user experience of the current ATO site

• Deeper understanding of how users interpret, consume and engage with tax content

• Improved understanding of tax agents’ use of the individual section of the website and content requirements as they relate to helping individuals.


90% survey completion rate


8 audience
profiles and user journey maps