Analytics & Digital Marketing Tips

Top 5 Strategic Reasons for Usability Testing

August 7, 2009           Conversion Testing

5. Usability data is addicting and can lead toward a long term desire to better serve your customers. Watching a usability testing session unfold in real time allows you, the product maker, to take a step away from the product and understand what is happening on the ground. Without empathy, it is much more difficult to come to the right design decisions.

4. Surveys, while inexpensive to conduct and in some cases statically valid, rely heavily on self-reported behavior or preference (and on retrospective accounts of past behavior). Since people are notoriously bad at articulating what they want and need, and are often unaware of their own behavior, surveys can fall short. Usability testing, because it depends on measuring behavior can find problems that would not be revealed in a survey.

3. Although a heuristic or expert usability review will give you insight to usability problems and can catch some issues inexpensively, usability testing can help define the scope and severity of usability issues so that you can tackle problems in the order of priority. Usability testing always results in findings that we didn’t know existed prior to testing (as usability professionals).

2. You are a project manager or executive and would like to generate buy-in from your peers/leaders about changes that need to happen. For one reason or another, the user experience has taken the backburner, but you need to convince stakeholders that there is definite room for improvement – that will directly impact your bottom line. A usability test is the perfect way to measure the user experience and get the evidence you need. You’ll even test your own assumptions.

1. Your website needs a redesign. Your team has inspired (or at times contentious) viewpoints in terms of strategy and content, but you need to understand how users experience your site. Usability testing can help you make the right decisions and compromises, because you’ll hear directly from those who your site is affecting the most. Drive forward with data.

 

 

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