Jul 07, 2021

What is UX Research? How has it evolved?

What is UX Research? How has it evolved?
Jul 07, 2021

UX research scene has evolved rapidly over the years. It has gone from being a hygiene check to a highly popular practice. Earlier people used UX research rarely but now it has become a part of the product development process to make websites and apps seamless. 

 

UX Research is a method in which companies interact with their target audience to gain insights through various methods. Choosing the right method to do the research is very important otherwise results can be misleading.UX research is now being used across different teams in an organisation. For product teams, UX research might mean validating concepts, prototypes and the product and for marketing teams, it may mean testing brand designs and messaging before a launch. In other words, UX research is no longer a practice held in one corner of the business or ownership of its execution lying entirely with user researchers.

 

Types of User Research Methods

  1. Unmoderated Usability testingUnmoderated usability testing is a UX research technique where there is no one to guide the participants. This is mainly a remote usability testing method. Participants have to complete the tasks assigned to them with or without a given time frame. Researcher also gets to add some survey questions through a cloud based tool like UXArmy’s unmoderated usability testing tool. This UX testing technique delivers quick results as there are no moderators. The UXArmy tool also offers features like Screen recording playback and audio feedback of the customers.
  2. User Interviews: User interviews are a great way to gain behavioral and qualitative insights about the audience. By having live interviews, observing behaviour and tone of the participants, you can ask open ended questions that would reveal the insights that Unmoderated testing can’t. Cost of this type of study can be high but there are some tools that let you do it for a nominal fee. To know more visit our website.
  3. Card Sorting: Creating a user-friendly information architecture is very challenging. Structuring the content in the way that users want to see and to stay clear of bias while doing so is a difficult task. The whole purpose of creating such information architecture is to help users find what they are looking for. To help users find what they are looking for you must look at your website from your user's view. All of this sounds very interesting, but how do you get your users' views? Well I have a suggestion ‘Card Sorting. Card Sorting is a UX research method in which you write the names of the items on index cards, shuffle the deck and ask users to arrange them into piles. 
  4. Tree Testing: Tree testing is a research method for assessing findability within the website or app. In tree testing, testers work with an existing set of categories and highlight where they believe an item is most likely to be located. This is also known as reverse card sorting.Card sorting would logically take place before a tree test. In fact, tree testing is a good way to validate the results from your card sorting exercises.
  5. Diary Studies:  Diary Studies are a long format of usability testing where the tester documents his long term usability review in a diary format. It's a useful approach for capturing organic feedback on activities that are repetitive, long, or unpredictable.

How to design a User Research?

  1. Objective: First step is to set the objectives of study. An example of objective can arise from the situation if a Financial Service company has created a new Design prototype for its banking app then they would want to know how easy it is for customers to bank on that app. 
  2. Identify: Identifying the right prospect testers that represent your audience and can give quality feedback that will generate insights. Tools like UXArmy offer their own panel where you can use filters to choose the right testers.
  3. Choose the type of study: The type of UX study should compliment your objective for example, if the company wants find out that how should they categorize and subcategorize the services so that it is easy for users to navigate then they should go for card sorting and then validate the results by tree testing.
  4. Design, Execute, Observe and understand: After everything is in the place. It's now time to push the button and observe how users are interacting with the website. Understand their problems and gain qualitative and quantitative insights.
  5. Analyse and Implement: The final step of the process is to analyse the results. UXArmy offers various matrices like navigation maps, heat maps, usability metrics etc. to evaluate and analyse the result. With these matrices it becomes super easy to conclude the UX research study and implement the necessary changes.

 

Conclusion 

UX research has evolved over the years and has been widely accepted as it has many uses across various functions of the organisation and offers qualitative and quantitative insights. Tools like UXArmy’s UX toolkit make the process a lot easier and analysis quicker at a very nominal cost.

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