One of our services is facilitating user experience (UX) testing sessions for our clients. These sessions allow us to better understand how the end user will interact with a website and have historically been performed in person. Given that we are working remotely more and more, we have formulated a process to seamlessly transition these sessions to a remote format. Following the steps below will result in testing sessions that will run smoothly and yield informative results.
Define your end goal
Begin by defining the end goal that your team hopes to achieve from conducting the UX testing sessions. This will help to create a clear path and strategy for the questions and tasks. For example, you may want to know if your design works effectively and if users can easily find what they are looking for on your site.
Choose the right platform
Be sure to choose a user-friendly video conference platform that you are familiar with. The most effective way to conduct testing sessions is to get the participant to share their screen so you can see their path and record it to review later, so be sure your chosen platform has these capabilities. The program should also be easy for participants to set up and for you to trouble-shoot if any technical issues arise. Be sure to test everything across a variety of devices, browsers and operating systems beforehand. Some of the platforms we use commonly are:
Have a friendly demeanor & prepare a script
In most testing sessions it is ideal that the participant complete tasks as they would in a normal setting. This means removing their stress or nerves will provide a more accurate understanding of how everyday users will use the site. Therefore, it is important you are personable and make them feel comfortable in these sessions. It is often helpful to write a script to ensure you include all of the relevant information and provide a smooth experience. For example, if you wish to record the sessions it is important to get approval from the participant at the beginning of the session.
Guide the session
When it comes to the content and tasks of the testing session these guidelines will help everyone have a clear understanding of the task at hand.
- When testing a participant your questions should be clear and concise. If participants ask you to clarify anything just repeat the questions to keep everything equal among sessions.
- It is important to only test one flow per task to best measure and understand how they navigate the site.
- Ask the participants to verbally walk you through their thought process. This will give you a better understanding of their reasoning behind their actions when navigating the site.
To efficiently summarize the results we recommend having someone in the sessions who is designated for taking notes and keeping the session on schedule. This will keep the sessions running smoothly and relieve the facilitator from distractions. It will also result in efficiencies by reducing the time spent reviewing entire session recordings and to make observations as things happen.
"It is always eye-opening in UX testing to see what tests well with users and what doesn't. It not only helps us determine what is the most usable to a certain website's users but also gives us first-hand visual feedback as to what could be improved."