See your site or app through your users' eyes
What is online user testing?
Online user testing is a form of usability testing where we record your target users interacting with your site or app as they complete a number of pre-defined tasks. Their actions are recorded while doing so, so that you can clearly recognise any sources of error or confusion. At the end of the test, we'll provide a detailed report outlining the key findings of the test and our recommendations for fixing the most critical usability issues. We'll also supply the recordings of each user, so that your own team can see for themselves the problems experienced by the people who participated in the test.
Benefits of online user testing
Unlike other customer research methods, such as focus groups and online surveys, which tell you what users say they would do in a given situation, online user testing enables you to see how users actually behave while interacting with your website, web app, or mobile app.
Online user testing enables you to:
- Learn how real users interact with your site or app
- Track their task completion rates and times
- Get feedback about labelling, navigation, and expected content/functionality
- Analyse the path they took through your site or app
- Discover what they like—and also what they dislike—about your site or app
- Identify their overall satisfaction levels with the site or app
In short, online user testing gives you valuable quantitative and qualitative data on which to base your design decisions.
When to test
It's never too early to test. Online user testing can be used at multiple points of the development cycle:
- During the design/pre-coding phase, to evaluate the usability of the proposed designs, by conducting an online user test with mockups or sketches (known as wireframes) of the proposed webpages or app screens. Testing with mockups or sketches before a single line of code is written can significantly reduce your development costs and time.
- After the coding phase, to test if the changes made your site or app more usable.
Your site or app does not need to be public to allow us to conduct online user testing—as long as it's possible to access the site or app (or the mockups/sketches of the webpages or screens) remotely, we can conduct the test.
What it involves
When you contact us to conduct online user testing, the process generally runs as follows:
- Free, no-obligation quotation. We're always happy to provide a no-obligation quotation. If, like most customers, you need to get user feedback on your site or app sooner rather than later, we can talk through your test over the phone or send you our information-gathering questionnaire by email.
- Designing the test. We review your test requirements and design an appropriate test for your site or app.
- Running the test. We conduct the test with an agreed number of test participants recruited by us or selected from your own customer base. Each test is recorded and is available for reference after the test is complete.
- Documenting the results. Of course, you won't need to sit through all the user recordings (unless you want to)! Once all of the tests have been completed, we'll collate all of the information in a detailed report, which will include our analysis of the findings, a prioritised list of the key usability issues that you need to fix, and our recommendations, drawn from current best practice, for fixing the issues.
We'll also supply the recordings of each user as they complete your test so that your own team can see first-hand the problems experienced by people using your site or app.
How to get started
To request your free, no-obligation quotation or to simply find out more about our online user testing service, just call us at +353 (0)1 5475145 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our usability analysts will be happy to help you.
Bill Albert, Tom Tullis, and Donna Tedesco, Beyond the Usability Lab. Online usability studies are probably the most efficient way to collect detailed and scalable usability metrics.