Category Archives: User testing

Are your customers getting what they want?

As a product owner or site designers you are responsible for guiding your site visitors and helping them to achieve their goals.

To do this you need to know why your customers are coming to your site. This isn’t always that obvious – I’ve been working with a finance company and they thought their customers were coming to take out loans. This wasn’t entirely true and the bulk of their customers were actually visiting the site to research about loans.

If you know what customers want then make it easy for them to find this information and achieve their tasks.

If you’re not clear who your customers are and what they want. Then there are some simple things you can do to help inform your judgment.

  1. Firstly this is obvious but ask them. Run a simple site survey. There are a lot of tools available which can help you with this.
  2. It’s worth mentioning that you’re not going to get everyone filling in the survey and it will be biased to a certain type of person. That said it’s a good starting point.
  3. Check your site analytics and work out what your customers are doing on your site. Analytics can be very time consuming, but there are some simple stats which are worth checking. What are your top landing pages, popular pages and what products are selling the most.
  4. What search terms are people using to find your site.
  5. Check your internal search to understand what customers are looking for and also the language that they use.
  6. If your business has access to a call centre, see if you can spend some time talking to the operatives and listening in on the calls. Find out what are the most popular questions or requests.
  7. Do you have direct access to customers, talk to them and find out as much as you can about what motivates them to buy your products.

By gathering the information you’ll start to get a better understanding of who your customers are and what they need from you. With this to hand you can start to understand what it is your customers need and how you can create a site that helps your customer achieve their goals.

User testing approach and the product purchasing process

I’ve been working on the testing plan for a large personal finance company.

The aim of testing is to understand customer behaviour during the purchase process and how we can help motivate customers through the journey. The purchase journey can be broken into a number of stages.

Recognition of a problem or a need
Product Evaluation
Buying decision
Expectation and use

As part of the customer research I’m using an online survey to gather customer requirements at key stages in the process. A secondary aim is to understand what devices customers are using and how they use devices differently. This should help inform the longer term strategic development of the site.

As well as the online questionnaire I’m running some face to face user testing. This consists of in depth customer interviews which inform the affinity or a behaviour model. [We can then assign features and functionally to ensure that customer needs are support by the product.]

Usability testing the current web and responsive offer will highlight what is working and what’s not working so well.

Running the two sessions will give both good insight into the strategic product development whilst delivering immediate improvements to the product.