Guess what? Nobody cares what you think.
Usability testing is the practice of testing how easy something is to use on a group of representative users.
It typically involves observing people and how they interact with your product or service at all stages from early development to release.
“Your brand or product is what people say about it when you’re not in the room.”
– Amazon CEO, Jeff Besos
Too often, organisations project their message and make assumptions about their audiences’ needs. But your customers largely don’t care what you think, so you need to ‘get out of the building’ and ask them.
Because you can can learn so much about user habits, expectations, and needs, user testing is an essential component of any successful project.
Cost effective, no lab conditions or men in white coats – usability testing helps to validate the work reducing risk, saving money and ultimately helping give better outcomes and more value to our clients.
Usability testing can be performed at any point in the design process.
If building a website or app, there’s no requirement to wait until we have a working prototype, ideas can be tested using simple sketches of user scenarios.
The earlier that testing can be done, the sooner you can validate ideas (and the less work you’ll have to do later). It’s better if multiple tests are made throughout the project build and post-launch, but if time or budget restricts then care should be taken when considering when best to perform.
The following outlines steps we take when undertaking a typical usability test process for an app or website:
Consultation & Script
We look to understand your new or existing product and audiences. We determine the best elements of your service to test and create a simple script that our users will follow to complete testing.
With your feedback, we will recruit users within your core audiences to test your website around critical tasks. Typically we will recruit at least 5 and up to 10 users.
To get the best output:
- users should be an accurate representation of the right audience for the product/service.
- tests will be impartial so our users are not influenced in any way that could lead to biased actions.
- the sessions are documented or recorded for later review.
- results are examined by UX experts to determine the recommendations that follow.
Testers are invited to our studio for 30-40 minutes each and are asked a series of background questions. Following this, we ask them to perform a set of essential tasks on your website using a mix of relevant mobile and desktop devices.
We record their voice, face and their on-screen movements. One Friday team member directs the user, a second takes notes on any critical issues discovered.
From this, we distill the results and provide you with a full written report that will give you an overview of any problem areas. We will also create a video of the highlights of the tests. We can provide the video for each full test session to give you more detail.
From the results, we will provide a report that outlines recommendations that should be actioned to address any issues.
We recommend that no less than 5 users should be tested for each audience to get reliable results.
"Wow, the video you shared of the usability testing sessions is really a great way to present the information...very powerful and you can't argue with it!"
Sarah Flaherty, IT Tralee
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We work hard to ensure every project we touch feels right, and delivers a positive user experience.
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