10 UX Testing Tips

In his April 2015 talk at NUX Newcastle, WhatUsersDo founder Lee Duddell shared his Remote UX Testing Tips.

Drawing on lessons learned from producing over 250,000 UX videos, these tips are for anyone considering remote UX testing for the first time, as well as those who want to get more from their testing programme.

Three tips before you start testing…

TIP 1. It’s time to UX Test when you need to understand “Why?”

Deciding when to test is the first question that those new to UX testing need to answer and can seem daunting.

However, the answer, and the first tip, is simple: you’ll know it’s time to run a UX test when you want “Why?” answers to the “How many” questions posed by analytics data.

For example: “Why do visitors bounce on Product Pages?”, or “Why do people abandon the registration form?”.



TIP 2. Test as early as you can

Testing early in the design and development process saves time and money (and reduces internal debate).

Don’t wait for a fully formed website — you can test design mock-ups and semi-functional prototypes (even low-fidelity ones) so long as you explain to participants that not everything will work.



Read more about when to test in the Project Lifecycle.


TIP 3. Use case studies and a video to build a business case

Run one video of a user on your site and share this with your manager, together with case studies, to build a business case for testing. The video will get across the concept, the case studies the ROI.



This case study describes how Branded3 incorporates user testing into all stages of their working process to improve all aspects of a client’s business.


Three tips for when you’re designing tests…

TIP 4. Set tasks for Users

When setting tasks for users, it’s tempting to ask what they think of your website or to ask them to score every element.

However, it’s better to write tasks for users to attempt (as opposed to writing survey questions for them to answer), so you capture in-the-moment, natural feedback at the point of interaction.

That’s the best way to generate the insight you need to improve UX.



TIP 5. Consider where users start their journey

When writing tasks for users, think about where users start their online journeys.

Do they begin from Google, a competitor site, or from an email. Not all tests should start from your home page!



Get our report on how users search for home insurance to find out more about testing different user journeys.


TIP 6. Run a pilot

If in doubt about the tasks you’ve written, run a two-participant pilot to test your tasks and then refine them before you go ahead with the full test.

Three tips for when you’re analysing user videos…

TIP 7. Observe behaviour

As you analyse videos, try to ignore users’ design opinions – focus your analysis on what users do, and identify why they struggle.

TIP 8. Log issues

Create “Tags” in videos to bookmark insight and create a playlist of key moments.

TIP 9. Share the issues, backed up with videos

Share UX videos and clips widely. They’re very compelling and will get the attention of senior management — especially useful if your organisation has a HiPPO problem!



Need some in-depth UX analysis help? Download the Get Going With UX Testing handbook for the full guide to setting up and analysing your own remote UX tests.


One final Tip from Jakob Nielsen…

TIP 10. “Shut up… and listen to users”.

NN/g’s Usability 101: Introduction to Usability article states:

Observe what the users do, where they succeed, and where they have difficulties with the user interface. Shut up and let the users do the talking.

2 Responses to “10 UX Testing Tips

  • Thanks for the helpful and insightful tips! This helps clarify some questions I had about the sometimes confusing UX testing.

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