User Testing Can Destroy Your Product
Have you ever thought about or performed user testing for your product?
Have you ever thought about using any of the user testing websites to understand how users think about your product?
Then here are some warnings/advice you might need to consider.
1)They lie sometimes
If you are in this early stage trying to define your users personas or trying to understand what your users need, then make sure to apply the real-life pressure on them to get the real answers which is almost impossible.
Unfortunately users who come to be interviewed, asked few questions about your product or even use your app in front of you, they are coming with the mind set of “Let me see how can I help” or “Just give me my giveaway” .
- They will have big patience to you and your product flow and try to make their way through your product to avoid making you feeling bad which is not realistic. Unless you are Facebook/Instagram or Uber, they most probably will give up using your product with the first crash/bug they face. Some of them don’t even bother to go and give you bad review on the market, in case it is an app.
- They will give you a luxury mindset answer. Which means that if you are asking them questions such as: how much would pay for that? do you think this price is reasonable? they will not give you a reliable answer since they don’t have the real life financial pressure that your real users will have. If someone stopped you in the shopping mall asking you would you pay $10 for an application that show you the song lyrics while listening to the song, most probably you would say to him “Maybe yes”. But if you are at the end of month and waiting for your next salary and came across this app, you would say “Hmmm, no I don’t need that”.
So don’t take all what they say for granted and instead consider the statistical studies that have been done already and published online. Check out this link to get an idea about the experimental studies and their results
2)They don’t know what they want
There are two types of products:
- Product that solve a real problem that the user suffer from.
- Product that makes user life easier by simplifying a process of achieving one of his/her goals.
We are now in a very advanced generation where almost all the essential needs have been satisfied already and most of the new products now falls in the second category “Product that makes user life easier”. That’s why it is very difficult for us to know what do we do daily, weekly or occasionally that can be easier using technology.
Instead of asking the user what do you need from an app or a website like this in every single feature, try to observe using analytics or by recording their sessions where they struggle and push it with minimal efforts then test their reactions.
Apply for example does not make annual survey with users to decide what technologies need to be developed next, they observe and rely on their experience and knowledge and give the user something valuable.
The down side of this approach is that, you might mistake or make wrong assumption. That’s why you should go for the MVP approach and push it then observe, adjust, push, observe .. and so on.
- User testing is important but don’t take everything they say for granted.
- If you think that this feature is valuable, then push it in it’s simple way and observe your engagement with it.
- Observe your users engagement with your product is as important as user testing if it was not more important.
- User testing can give you wrong information, but user engagement observation always says the truth.
- User user session recording tools in your product such as: InspecLet and TestFairy.
- Use Google Analytics and keep your eye on bounce, drop offs, funnel analysis.
- Adopt quickly when you notice something wrong from your observations.