User experience research is vital to creating a successful product. It ensures your product is user-friendly and intuitive. Here are five methods of performing UX research.
1. Remote Usability Testing
One of the most useful UX research methods is Remote Usability testing. This type of testing lets your researchers conduct user testing with participants in many different locations. You can use remote usability testing to monitor users in environments where they would typically encounter your product, such as their home offices. During this type of testing, a number of participants will test individual tasks or full procedures, while you record their progress and any issues they encounter.
2. Online Surveys
Conducting an online survey is a simple way to cast a wide net for user feedback. You can send your customers and users requests to complete these surveys and use the responses you collect to detect pain points and commonalities in the general user experience. However, this type of usability testing isn’t well-suited for prototypes, as it typically requires the product or service to already be available to consumers. The best times to use online surveys are when some aspect of your product or service is changing, such as website revisions, or when you want feedback on current offerings to incorporate into planned future updates.
3. Desirability Studies
A desirability study tests how users react to and what they find appealing about your product’s design. When you perform a desirability study, you want your users to provide feedback about how appealing they find the design and what their emotional and attitudinal reactions are to it. You don’t need to have a full prototype ready to conduct this type of UX research. All you need to do is mock up the visual designs you plan to use in your product and allow study participants to react to those designs.
4. Experience Sampling
Experiencing sampling is a method of quickly locating issues and pain points before you provide a prototype to users for usability testing and interviews. This way, you can prioritize the most important pain points and you’ll have a better idea of which areas of your prototype you want your usability testers to focus on.
5. Task Analysis
Task analysis is quite similar to remote usability testing in that it collects data from users actually using the product. The difference is that, while remote usability testing tends to be done once the full prototype is ready, a task analysis should be completed early in your development process. Ideally, you should complete this UX research before you begin designing the product’s visual components. Task analysis is useful for determining the scope your product will need to encompass, identifying the best site structure, and refining task organization and navigation.
You don’t need to use every method of UX research during your testing and research phase. Choose the most useful methods for your product or update. Think about the information you already have, the information you need, and any potentially complicated aspects of using your product.