You already have a website, whether it’s an older one you think still works for you, or a brand-new site made just the other day. If you haven’t performed user testing to see how your (potential) customers use the site, though, then you’re likely missing out on some crucial data.
Getting Started with User Training
User testing is defined as “a type of user research in which respondents don’t just give you answers to your questions.” They use the website, in this case, so you can get a more concrete sense of how they do so, and what problems they might encounter. This real-world application of your site allows you to determine what works, and what could use a bit of tweaking.
As with everything online, it’s important that you understand your target audience as best you can. In this case, you may be learning some things that you don’t get in simple analytics. For example, you may know that you have an unusually high bounce rate, but may not understand what’s causing the problem. If you can see in front of you that someone arrives to the site and is turned off by an outdated design, then you have much more information to work with.
The Benefits of Regular Testing
So, how can you get this process started? Truthfully, it should be done as early as you can in order to implement any meaningful changes and to give those changes – and the data that drove them – the consideration they require. It’s fine to start user testing down the road, though; in fact, you should perform this every year, or every few years, to ensure your products and services (and the website you advertise them on) are all still on target for your audience.
Why else should you consider regular testing? Well, it may be that, since technology changes quickly, you’re no longer using the most efficient or user-friendly tools to help your potential customers navigate the website. Or, even if your website functions just fine, it may not appeal to the majority of people who are using it five years from when it was launched. Times change, and so do your site visitors!
Building a Better Process
Something else to consider, when it comes to the value of user testing, is that there isn’t any chance to “cheat” when compared with survey use. When taking any kind of “quiz,” many people will think too much about their answers, often to the detriment of an honest survey. As a result, user training really weeds out that possibility and creates for a better evaluation.
If you’re going to proceed, then you can either test your users in person or remotely, and with or without a “moderator.” In the name of the monitored process discussed above, you may want to be present for as much as you can. It might take a decent amount of time and effort, but the end result of a more thorough understanding of what you could do better for your potential customers is worth it.
From there, you want to take a few steps: make a plan of what you want to accomplish, make sure you have a step-by-step instructions guide for your users to consult during testing, determine the number of people you want to test and…well, test them. After that, you can analyse the results and put together a report that sums up what you’ve learned, as well as any next steps to be taken.
User testing may be a new concept for you, but that doesn’t mean it has to be daunting! If you’re looking for a marketing partner who can help to carry out this process, as well as to design the testing from start to finish alongside you, then get in touch with Eyler Creative today!