usability testing

The top three benefits of qualitative research in UX

Qualitative research ensures customer validation, clarity and a process when producing the products of tomorrow. It is possible to use qualitative techniques via a user centred design process to truly innovate whilst remaining agile.

The time and cost of qualitative research is often very small in the ‘grand scheme’ of product development.

Yet it is able to answer the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of which products should be created as opposed to just ‘how much’ attained from quantitative data, therefore yielding highly creative outcomes. 

The state of digital marketing in Hong Kong: highlights from Digital Cream 2013

Over 100 senior marketers attended our inaugural roundtable event in Hong Kong last month. 

They deftly explored and shared nimble ways to utilise the very latest digital marketing ideas and techniques in order to better equip themselves for their future endeavours.

Some were intent on making stronger inroads into mainland China, others were planning on taking full advantage of the small but also highly lucrative local Hong Kong marketplace (a jewel in the China crown), and for a fair number it was to better hone their abilities and skills to market across the whole APAC region.

DIY usability assessments for expert users

I firmly believe that observing real users doing real tasks is the ‘gold standard’ for usability testing, particularly when the designers observe it themselves and see the problems only real users can find. 

However, sometimes full user testing falls outside the budget and the project manager will decide to use an expert usability assessment instead. 

This works well for websites where an expert usability consultant can put themselves in the shoes of the user and work through typical tasks identifying critical usability issues.

But what if the system supports far more complex tasks, which users take years to learn?

Ten free usability testing tools

There are plenty of tools around which allow website owners to conduct tests and attempt to identify problem areas on their websites.

I’ve listed ten of the best free usability testing tools, which are either completely free of charge, or allow users to try before they buy. If I’m missed any good ones, let me know… 

Tips for usability testing with children

child with laptopChildren represent a huge market for digital products yet most are designed by and for adults.  Even those which are targeted at children often get it embarrassingly wrong – like dads trying to be ‘cool’.  But all is not lost.  We have found that user research and testing with children opens up a whole new perspective, helping adult designers to see the world through the eyes of a child.

Our user research with children has ranged from social networking and mobile phones to online games and websites targeted at everyone from toddlers to teens. 

Here we share some of the lessons we have learnt in adapting our usability research and testing methods for children…