Research Skills for Developers: How to Talk to Your Users

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Whether you're in stealth mode or generating revenue, there will be a time when research is an essential part of your decision making process. Learn techniques such as recruiting, observing, in-depth interviewing and usability testing which will help you build better products.

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Research Skills for Developers: How to Talk to Your Users

  1. 1. Research Skills for Developers How to Talk to Your Users Diane Loviglio User Experience Researcher @dianeloviglio UX Eye for the Developer Guy - June 29th 2011
  2. 2. Research Techniques Get the Right People Recruiting Observe their Current Observation Behaviors In-depth Understand Why Interviews Let Them Talk You Through Think-alouds Your Product*@dianeloviglio June 2011
  3. 3. Get the Right PeopleDon’t just talk to anyone.Don’t just talk to everyone.Recruit the people with behaviors you are interested in.(worry less about occupation, age, gender unless it’s relevant)e.g. Homeowners, not couple in their 30’s with their first childe.g. Roommates who split bills, not college kidsExerciseYou’re developing a competitor to Open Table.Which different types of users would you want to talk with?@dianeloviglio June 2011
  4. 4. Observe Their Current BehaviorsIn their natural environmentWith their own devicesWith their own problems and their own datae.g. before Mint, people used spreadsheets to manage finances get those artifacts - have them walk you through the structuree.g. use their laptop, their browser, see their bookmarks, their keyboard shortcuts etcExerciseYou’re developing a competitor to Open Table.Where and when would you observe your potential users’behavior?@dianeloviglio June 2011
  5. 5. Understand WhyStart questions with...Who, What, Where, When, Why and HowWould you? Do you think? Are you? This is based on hypotheticals!e.g. How did you figure out how to get here? Did you use Google Maps?e.g. What would you change about your shopping experience? Would you like bigger aisles?ExerciseYou’re developing a competitor to Open Table.What questions would you ask to understand why your potentialuser is behaving the way they are?@dianeloviglio June 2011
  6. 6. Let Them Talk You Through Your Product**This is not you giving them a demoSit them in front of your prototype/beta.Give them a task and then let them drive.Have them think out loud the whole time and record the session.Take notes during the session.If they ask for help, say “First I want to see how you would do it. Imagine I’m not here.”ExerciseYou’re developing a competitor to Open Table.What tasks would you give them?@dianeloviglio June 2011
  7. 7. Research Skills for Developers How to Talk to Your Users Diane Loviglio User Experience Researcher @dianeloviglio UX Eye for the Developer Guy - June 29th 2011

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