User experience (UX) involves developing products that are useful, easy and enjoyable to use. A product’s entire experience is about enhancing people’s interactions with it. The company makes sure that its customers are delighted. UX designers achieve this goal by employing various UX research methods. UX research is a critical component of UX design yet is often misunderstood. User research and testing are often treated as afterthoughts or as an unaffordable luxury. In the real world, everything designers create in their safe, comfortable offices must endure and prosper. Thousands of people will interact with creations in an uncontrollable manner. UX research helps ground ideas in reality and improve their chances of success. Many people think there isn’t enough money, time, and expertise to solve problems.
Understanding why users behave in a certain way is essential to conducting effective UX research. Product teams and user experience designers should conduct regular user research. It is better to dive deeper if they have the time, resources, and budget.
What Are UX Research Methods?
A UX research method generates information about users’ behavior, motivations, and needs. The user experience can improve by utilizing various user research methods. The process involves user interviews, surveys, focus groups, and card sorting.
Benefits of UX Research Methods
Ultimately, user experience is about one thing. We aim to design products that enhance user interaction and make an impression. When the product meets users’ needs, they are happy and satisfied. The benefits of user research are numerous:
- Develops human-centered products based on the needs and goals of your users
- Analyzes the behaviors and usage patterns of users;
- When you approach development and design correctly, you can avoid unnecessary costs;
- Defines the end goal of the whole process;
- Encourages team collaboration;
- Replaces assumptions with data to address specific user issues;
- Designing with usability in mind is possible to drive a better return on investment.
How Do You Select The Right UX Research Methods?
Selecting the right research approach isn’t always easy. Each user experience method has its benefits based on the project at hand. In defining your ux research method, you will need to take a few factors into account. The following are some of them:
- Development type (app, website, software, etc.)
- Client type
- Phases of a project
- Planned timeline
Types of UX Research Methods
There are two types of methods available to achieve the desired result in user experience research.
- Qualitative UX Research Techniques
Researchers explain a phenomenon based on impressions, interpretations, or prior knowledge.
- Quantitative UX Research Techniques
They provide us with the tools to evaluate, track and compare data. It enables one to make informed decisions. Several techniques can be applied to qualitative and quantitative methods. You need to understand both since each can provide a different perspective on a project.
Qualitative UX Research Methods
The user interview is a great UX tool for gathering information or feedback from a user. The interview usually takes place one-on-one. UX designers and researchers ask users questions about products or services. Nurturing the user’s responses to understand their feelings and thoughts.
You can conduct an interview using different techniques.
- Ethnographic interview
The study involves both interviews and observations to gain insight into the habits and customs of the users.
- In-depth Interview
The researcher asks specific and narrowed-down questions on a given subject, idea, or feature. Any project stage can benefit from this method, from planning to testing to implementation.
- Focus Groups
By conducting focus groups, you can ask your users directly about your product and service. It may be possible to interview more than one user. Users can also interact with each other about the interview topic. It gives you a better idea of how people perceive your solution.
- Questionnaires And Surveys
Research can gather more data quickly with UX surveys and questionnaires than one-on-one interviews. It can include open and closed questions, carefully chosen to gather reliable information for further analysis and comparison. Online survey tools such as Google Forms and Typeform are available for conducting UX surveys.
- Usability Tests
User interaction is observed during usability testing. An unmoderated usability test allows you to watch how people use an app or a website.
- Sorting Cards
It aims to discover how users categorize or prioritize information. You can use this information to determine website structure. It’s also important to know whether your users understand the information. Users are asked to group cards based on the researcher’s previous criteria, which represents the type of information they are testing.
Quantitative UX Research Methods
- Data Analysis
The development of digital products requires little additional data from users to be able to measure. You can find everything you need online. Analytics tools like Google Analytics can provide you insights into how users interact with your app or website. Analyzing and monitoring these data provide you with a great deal of information about your users.
Do you know whether the changes you made are working? Users can provide feedback, but this is not always enough. Make more data-driven decisions by comparing your solution’s current and historical performance. It is a great idea to use benchmarking in UX design. In this way, you can see what works and what doesn’t right away. It’s just that you have to gather the data first before comparing it with the new results.
- A/B Testing
You should try all possible solutions when you cannot decide between them. A/B testing can help in this situation. Digital marketing uses this technique very often. The user experience can also benefit from it. Have trouble deciding which CTA button goes where? Let your users decide with A/B testing.
- Analyzing Eye Movements
Getting feedback from users is one thing, but you might want to see what they view. Using eye-tracking, you can detect which parts of your design your customers notice and avoid. You can gain a deeper understanding of your users’ conscious and unconscious behaviors.
Every exceptional user experience begins with user research. A user’s experience with a product is subjective, as indicated by its name. As a result, each product must be designed according to its users’ needs, goals, context, and unique tasks. UX research methods can help designers shape a product’s design. Customers and businesses can benefit from its products.