User research methods
Updated: Aug 16, 2020
UX research is so vital for any business. Companies pay and invest a lot to UX researchers, because they are the ones who will be studying and understanding what your audience want and need. They will be the ones who will lay the ground work and pathway for the direction of the project. After researching and gathering different data, you will have a clear goal for how you the final product should be. Not sure how users want the app or system to be like? all you have to is just ask them.
As a user researcher you have to ask the right questions. Here is what you don't do, wouldn't it be great if... or what if we had the app do this? These are the wrong questions to ask yourself or anyone. Remember you are not designing or creating this for yourself but for your users. This is where the research is needed.
Before you use any methods you need to first decide which is important, then see what approach will be best. So what are the methods that UX researchers may use?
Interviews or focus groups- This could be members of the public, staff from a company or friends. It all depends on the project. These groups could be based on your target audience or just general audience.
Surveys and questionnaires- Gathering data from set of surveys and questionnaires. Doing intense market research and looking at other apps and systems that are similar.
Creating personas- Creating user profiles from 1 to a dozen depending on the project. This will help you know exactly who to target and who will be using your final product.
Define goals- Set specific goals that your users might have. How will they feel supported? What are the steps user have to take to reach the goal. For example, If they are purchasing a shoe from your website, how many steps are they taking to get to checkout and receive that confirmation email.
Brainstorm ideas- Always brainstorm ideas with your team. Mind mapping, sticky notes, diagrams, sketches, discussions etc.
Define requirements- Figuring out what is really important. Is the solution there?
There are way more methods UX researchers use but these are the main ones every UX Research and designer would know. When researching make sure to get as much data as possible, the more the better. After the research part would be the user testing where the team would and get the users to try out the prototype. There is a lot to talk about user testing, I will probably talk about it in the next blog post.
You want to give your users what they want, making sure their journey is easy and simple. So I leave you with this...Find solutions for problems and don't frustrate users.
What apps do you like most and why?