Easy & Effective Usability Testing at CodeMash 2012


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Getting user feedback on your progress is key to making successful interfaces and it doesn’t have to take months. In this session you will learn how setting up regular usability tests can allow you to save time doing the studies and without sacrificing quality.

Learn strategies and techniques that can be used for making traditional and remote usability testing methods easier to plan and conduct. We will cover usability testing from planning through analysis, and ways to provide useful and usable recommendations to the team.

This session covers the following topics:
• Planning tips and tricks
• Recruiting methods
• Note taking and managing observers
• Specific tips for methods (Traditional, Rapid Iterative Testing and Evaluation (RITE)
• Specific tips for locations (in-person, on-site, remote)
• Analysis and sharing your findings
• Making usable recommendations

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Easy & Effective Usability Testing at CodeMash 2012

  2. 2. "The biggest wasteof all is building somethingno one wants" @ericries #LeanStartupMI via @MelBugai – May 19, 2011
  3. 3. FIND OUT WHAT YOUR USERS REALLY NEED http://www.flickr.com/photos/ableman/534155207/sizes/o/in/photostream/Page 3 http://www.flickr.com/photos/ableman/
  4. 4. AVOID MISTAKES http://www.flickr.com/photos/dwulff/12256075/sizes/m/in/photostream/Page 4 http://www.flickr.com/photos/dwulff/
  6. 6. SAVE TIME & MONEYPage 6
  7. 7. GET HAPPY, SATISFIED USERS http://www.flickr.com/photos/cogdog/2194678510/sizes/o/in/photostream/Page 7 http://www.flickr.com/photos/cogdog/
  8. 8. Create a great,usable, accessible,and relevant experience
  10. 10. USABILITY TESTING •Real users doing real tasks •Not guided •Using prototypes or live products •Observed in the field Steve Krug - http://www.sensible.com/rsme.htmlPage 10
  11. 11. L O C AT I O N I S N ’ T I M P O R TA N T •Anywhere •Any Stage of dev •Anytime •Realistic environment http://www.flickr.com/photos/nzdave/491411546/sizes/o/in/photostream/Page 11 http://www.flickr.com/photos/nzdave/
  12. 12. PA R T I C I PA N T S Expert Led Required • Heuristic reviews • Usability Testing • Walk-through • RITE Testing • Accessibility review • Card Sorting Garrett Goldfield . Fast and Cheap Usability Methods: Using Discount Usability Techniques to DrivePage 12 Design on Time and Under Budget. http://www.nngroup.com/events/tutorials/guerilla_usability.html
  14. 14. KISS
  15. 15. REGULAR TESTING (Yes, this is an old idea; a great one!)Page 15
  16. 16. WHY REGULAR? •Team becomes: • accustomed to steady stream of qualitative insight • insight ensures quick decisions • …line up with business and user goalsPage 16 Adapted from Jeff Gothelf - http://blog.usabilla.com/5-effective-ways-for-usability-testing-to-play-nice-with-agile/
  17. 17. “Teams should stretchto get work into that day’stest and use the cadenceto drive productivity.” Jeff Gothelf - http://blog.usabilla.com/5-effective-ways-for-usability-testing-to-play-nice-with-agile/
  18. 18. BRING IT ON! •Recruitment process •Small focused tests •Regular timing or per Sprint •Same day mid-week (not Monday or Friday)Page 18
  19. 19. W H AT T O T E S T ? •Select 2 weeks prior to study •“Focus ruthlessly on a small number of the most important problems” – Steve Krug • Work in Progress • Websites, mobile, products, services • Prototypes: Paper to hi-fi • Concepts, rough ideas, brainstorming • Competing designs (A/B testing) • Comparative studies across market • User researchPage 19
  20. 20. U S A B I L I T Y T E S T I N G D AY •Make team aware •Invite everyone • Watch remotely • Recurring meeting invites for stakeholdersPage 20
  22. 22. MEASURE ABILITY TO ACHIEVE GOALS •Effectiveness •Efficiency •Learnability •Satisfaction •More…Page 22
  23. 23. MEASUREMENTS •Success •Time on task (not generally recommended) •% of tasks completed/not completed •Number of steps to accomplish task •Learning •Number of errors •Number of times help consulted •SatisfactionPage 23
  25. 25. PLANNING IS TIGHT •UX • Plan study • Space and equipment • Identify workPage 25
  26. 26. PRE-BOOK YOUR ROOMS •Test & Observation Rooms •Any location will do: • Conference rooms • Offices • Quiet corner of cafeteria • Remote •Time for facilitation, breaks, post-meeting • No more than 5 per day http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/raphaelquinet/513351385/sizes/l/in/photostream/Page 26 http://www.flickr.com/photos/raphaelquinet/
  27. 27. RECRUITMENT •Who are your primary users? • Will they be difficult to recruit? • How expensive is their time?Page 27
  28. 28. C R E AT E A S C R E E N E R Guide that helps determine who will participate. •Get details: • Education • Computer/Internet use and expertise • Knowledge of topic •Get them talking • Clear Communicator • Able to express themselves verbally •People who pass the screener should closely match your user group definitionPage 28
  29. 29. RULES OF THUMB Create a Budget •Recruiting: ~$250 per participant (varies) •Compensation: Starts at $50 - $100 and up • Internally - use swag • “Big fans” – cheaper alternatives ($15 Starbucks card)Page 29
  30. 30. HONORARIUMS •Make it easy – buy ahead • Gift cards from retail stores (Target, Starbucks) •More complex • Amazon Gift Cards • Product credits •Do not recommend Visa gift cards or similarPage 30
  31. 31. HIRE A RECRUITER •Allows you to focus. •Good recruiters: • find right participants • give regular updates • take care of directions, confirmations, incentives, etc.Page 31
  32. 32. DO IT YOURSELF •Internal resource who REALLY understands who you need •Create a panel (large recruits, less often) • Internal customer lists, user groups • Schedule as needed • Use cautiously •Final scheduling ALWAYS by phone • Ask questions that force them to talk • Don’t recruit non-talkersPage 32
  33. 33. USE SITE TO RECRUIT • Pop up on your site: • http://ethnio.comPage 33
  34. 34. INCLUDE PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES (PWD) “We are all only temporarily able-bodied. Accessibility is good for us all.” •Provide the Spirit of the law (Section 508, WCAG 2.0)Page 34 -@mollydotcom at #stirtrek 2011 via @carologic May 6, 2011
  35. 35. N U M B E R O F PA R T I C I PA N T S Controversy Abounds •As many as possible (rarely statistically significant) •Usability Testing Research (in 1990’s) • 5 from distinct sub-group of the user population will yield 80% of the findings (Nielsen, Virzi, Lewis) • Assumes expert has reviewed and found obvious issues •Recommend: • Early tests with 8 – 12 participants per user group • Iterative testing (3 per day, iterate, 3 new participants)Page 35 Barnum, Carol M. (Jan. 2003). What’s in a Number? STC Usability SIG Newsletter, Usability Interface. http://www.stcsig.org/usability/newsletter/0301-number.html Retrieved: 20080323
  36. 36. F O R M A L L A B A P P R O P R I AT E ? •Your team • Need them to show up • Need to be able to schedule as needed •Recommend laptop/portable lab • Can be semi-permanent • Ready when you are (minimal setup)Page 36
  37. 37. C R E AT E R E U S A B L E T E M P L AT E S •Screener •Scripts/Guides • Tasks (same or alternating) • Pre and Post questions •Consent Forms •Data Collection formatPage 37
  39. 39. REMOTE TESTING OPTIONS Moderated Un-Moderated • Researcher is present • No Researcher during study • Same effort as in-person • Minimal effort • Limited number of participants • High number of participants per per day (3-5) day • Immediate feedback • Test data compiled usually • Get to the “Why?” by asking within 2 days questions • Reduced or no ability to ask questionsPage 39
  40. 40. R E M O T E - M O D E R AT E D •Lab setup • Robust computer • Screen sharing software •Participants camera (optional) •Internet on both ends • Speedy • Separate from phone linePage 40
  41. 41. R E M O T E – U N - M O D E R AT E D •No “Lab” needed – online software •Participants camera (optional) •Participant’s internet only •Recommend to complement Moderated TestingPage 41
  42. 42. BENEFITS OF REMOTE •No travel •Easy to set up •No special room required (advised!) •Can be conducted from almost anywhere •See their computer environment •Drawbacks: • No F2F • Missed interaction • Technology will failPage 42
  43. 43. S O F T WA R E Un-moderated Moderated • Userlytics • GoToMeeting (screen • Loop 11 sharing) • UserZoom • Skype • ChalkMark • Morae • SilverbackPage 43
  45. 45. N O T E TA K I N G Paper? Computer? • Printed Script • People are less bothered • Quiet by typing now • Analysis may take longer • Can you pay attention? • Great for remote • Quicker AnalysisPage 45
  46. 46. Q U I C K E R – O N B I G PA P E R Issue P1 P2 P3 Search Used Yes No No Widget 1 Used N/A Used – unsure about Task 1 Notes 3 – easy 2 – needed 3 – easy help Task 2 Notes 2 – needed 2 – easy 2 – needed help help Task 3 Notes 2 – needed 3 – easy Ran out of help time Task 4 Notes 2 – needed 3 – easy Ran out of help timePage 46
  47. 47. OBSERVERS •PO, PM, dev, etc. • Stakeholders must attend to approve changes • Training: Set expectations (no interference) • Take notes • Make a list of 3 most serious issues • Help operate software/recording equipment (if in use)Page 47
  48. 48. THEY’RE HERE… Relax, they are only human •Get them talking •Will get frustrated • Be prepared - how react • Be supportive • Guide them back to the task • Do not lead •Listen more than you talk http://www.flickr.com/photos/chuybregts/Page 48 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/
  49. 49. TESTING
  50. 50. TRADITIONAL USABILITY TESTING •Conduct anytime •One concept tested throughout •Feedback given when the testing is done •Qualitative and quantitative study •Remote and in-person •“Start earlier than you think makes sense.” – Steve KrugPage 50
  51. 51. STEVE KRUG STYLE 2.5 Weeks to Testing •January 16 (Monday) • Start planning what to test and with whom • Create Screener • Start Recruit •January 23 • Determine tasks to test and create guide • Finish recruiting by Jan. 31 •February 2 • 1st Usability Testing Day •February 6th • Begin planning for Feb. 16th UT DayPage 51
  52. 52. STEVE KRUG (CONTINUED) •3 – 5 users per day • Recruit loosely and grade on a curve •Stakeholders watch tests – spectator sport •Debrief at end of study •Quick analysisPage 52
  53. 53. TWEAK, DON’T REDESIGN •Small iterative changes • Make it better now • Don’t break something else •Take something away • Reduce distractions • Don’t add – question it Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems.Page 53 By Steve Krug
  54. 54. GUERILLA STUDY “Hallway Testing” •Very quick studies •Very early in the design process (paper or soon after) •Recruiting is basic • Not familiar with the project • Ideally representative of user groupPage 54
  55. 55. RITE
  56. 56. R A P I D I T E R AT I V E T E S T I N G & E VA L U AT I O N •RITE is qualitative, exploratory, and conceptual •Creating conversation around elements •RITE is not for: • measuring performance • validating detailed design decisionsPage 56
  57. 57. RITE OVERVIEW •Most appropriate for: • early requirements gathering • design phase of production •Initial wireframes used to: • validate information architecture • gather feedback on proposed functionalityPage 57
  58. 58. RITE OVERVIEW Test Prioritize Update Test 1 High 2 Medium 3 Low •Series of small usability tests •Participants attempt tasks on concept •Qualitative user feedback (actions + comments) •New version tested with next day’s participantsPage 58
  59. 59. R I T E V S . S TA N D A R D U S A B I L I T Y T E S T I N G Topic RITE Standard Usability Testing Tested Concept Evolves Mostly static Suitable stage Must be early Anytime of project Dynamics New concepts each day One concept tested throughout Feedback Different elements Same elements throughout Recommendati Discussed throughout Received in the final ons report Data Qualitative Qualitative and quantitative Stakeholder Crucial to have daily Preferred involvementPage 59
  61. 61. D A I LY R E C A P S E S S I O N S •After the last session •30 minutes •Room with a whiteboard or paper •All decision makers MUST be present • If not, wait for UX analysisPage 61
  62. 62. GUIDELINES •Stay on Topic •Be Constructive •Don’t get distracted by small problems •Intense focus on fixing most serious problems firstPage 62
  63. 63. GOAL •Identify top 5 or 10 most serious issues • Top 3 from each list • Prioritize from lists • Make assignments for next piece of work • Stop Adapted from: Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and FixingPage 63 Usability Problems. By Steve Krug
  64. 64. DEBRIEF WITH TEAM •Quick analysis to quick decisions •Discuss: • trends seen • concerns • recommendations • prioritize changes for the next round • list lower priority changes for future iterationsPage 64
  66. 66. A N A LY S I S Read “between the lines” •Analysis up to ~1.5 x the facilitation time •Identify repetition and patterns •When found, continuation: • Adds cost • Delays reporting • Low probability of many new findingsPage 66
  67. 67. T R A N S F O R M D ATA •Know what you’ve got • Sort, reorganize, review, repeat • What refutes your expectations? • Surprises? • Outliers?Page 67
  68. 68. DOCUMENT WITH LESS TREES •Reduce, reuse •Use email, IM, etc. •Put it on the wall • Must be easy to understand • Quickly absorbablePage 68
  69. 69. E M A I L O R O N E PA G E R •Your Communication Goal: • Think about audience • How will it be used? •Include: • Study’s Goal • Tasks attempted • Who observed • What planned to fix and assignment • Future research/enhancementsPage 69
  70. 70. SHARE WHAT YOU LEARNPage 70
  71. 71. MAKE USERS VISIBLE Information radiators • Test findings • Artifacts • PersonasPage 71
  72. 72. T R A N S F O R M D ATA •Create useful findings and recommendations • Show screenshots of issues • Where possible show solutions They liked this! •Think about audience • How will it be used? Make this go away!Page 72
  73. 73. REVIEW •Plan out your goals •Recruit participants •Remote or in person? •Look for patterns •Easy-to-use findings and recommendationsPage 73
  76. 76. C O N TA C T C A R O L @carologic Email: Carol.Smith@perficient.com slideshare.net/carologic and slideshare.net/PerficientInc speakerrate.com/speakers/15585-caroljsmithPage 76
  77. 77. REFERENCES •Albert, Bill, Tom Tullis, and Donna Tedesco. Beyond the Usability Lab. •Gothelf , Jeff. http://blog.usabilla.com/5-effective-ways-for-usability-testing-to- play-nice-with-agile/ •Henry, S.L. and Martinson, M. Evaluating for Accessibility, Usability Testing in Diverse Situations. Tutorial, 2003 UPA Conference. •Krug, Steve. Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems. •Rubin, Jeffrey and Dana Chisnell. Handbook of Usability Testing: How to Plan, Design, and Conduct Effective Tests. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.Page 77
  78. 78. T O O L C O N S I D E R AT I O N S •In-person or remote? •Lab or on-site? •Prototype limitations (can it be online?, is it a document or a clickable site?) •Number of observers, number of participants? •Number of facilitators? •Logging and video editing needs (time on task, highlight video creation)? •Surveys before or after? •Eye tracking?Page 78
  79. 79. U S A B I L I T Y T E S T I N G S O F T WA R E •Morae •Ovo •SilverBack (Mac only) •UserWorks •Noldus •Tobii (Eye-tracker) •SMI (Eye-tracker) •SurveyMonkeyPage 79
  80. 80. S C R E E N S H A R I N G S O F T WA R E •GoToMeeting – http://www.gotomeeting.com •Lotus Sametime Unyte – http://www.unyte.com •YuuGuu -- http://www.yuuguu.com •WebEx – http://www.webex.com •Yugma -- https://www.yugma.com/ •Trouble Shooting: CoPilot - https://www.copilot.com/Page 80
  81. 81. S AT I S FA C T I O N Q U E S T I O N N A I R E S •Standard Usability Measurement Inventory (SUMI) • office/desktop software, purchase • 50 questions •Website Analysis and Measurement Inventory (WHAMMI) • Purchase • 20 questions •System Usability Scale (SUS) • Free • 10 questionsPage 81
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