As an internet user, you’ve come across products that you are actively using today and those that you even recommend others to not try. Your basis of product judgment? User experience.
The user experience of a product can make or break its growth in any target market. But how do you continue to constantly improve what you offer to users, without seeming too pushy about feedback?“Always be testing!”
If you want to make a product that doesn’t fall flat in just a few months, follow the thumb rule of continuously testing your user experience with smarter benchmarking.
What is benchmarking?
Benchmarking is an in-depth study that measures your baseline. This helps you track how your design and functional changes affect the user experience, and the product’s market placement in comparison to competitors.
The data driven modern marketers conduct this benchmarking in two ways:
This approach is used when you analyse only the performance of your own site or product. The benchmark testing helps you understand how users interact with your interface.
This is an excellent way to compare how your design iterations have impacted the overall user experience.
Simply put, stand-alone benchmarking is a great way to stay on track and consumer centric, when designing or redesigning your products.
The number of products and services online, are increasing by the day. So how do you stand out and make a difference? By getting a competitive edge and truly understanding what your competitors haven’t been able to deliver to the target market.
With this approach, you add a comparative component to understand how your site or product performs in comparison to your primary market competitors. It offers you a way to interpret your market standing based on usability, enabling you to work towards customer satisfaction and increased brand loyalty.
Why is usability testing so important?
If we had to put it in one statement, we would say: Because it helps you make a product or website that makes an impact and sticks in the market.
But here are a few reasons why usability testing plays an important role in the growth of successful businesses:
- Improves design by analysing customers interacting with your interface (website, mobile devices, prototypes, content).
- Validates your assumptions from low fidelity (sketches, wireframes) to live websites and applications.
- Tests the usability and appropriateness of design for your target user segment.
- Minimizes the need for recoding and redevelopment, by creating a defined path based on consumer data.
- Identifies the advantages and disadvantages of competing approaches for product design, and development to understand what worked and what didn’t.
- Gives insights into new features and presentation techniques to generate ideas for unique methods that give you a competitive edge.
- Identifies what is causing website dropoffs
- Clarifies the drives and motivators that lead to successful consumer persuasion and conversion.
What data does usability testing deliver?
With Affect Lab, you can gather actionable insights from these tests. Here are a few things that help you generate a product roadmap for design and development:
- Concrete tactical recommendations to to decrease cognitive load & improve the persuasiveness and emotional impact of your website
- An analysis of the results (metrics)
- Design recommendations based on user interaction to decrease drop offs
- List of potential areas for improvement and alternate approaches to achieve your business objectives
- Written/Verbal user feedback
- User session recordings mapped with Cognitive effort scores
- Heat map of your website pages vs that of your competetion
- Key insight into competitors product strategies
- Recommendations on new product goals
- A scorecard which provides a reusable framework for evaluating where your site or application currently stands against the competition.
How is usability testing conducted?
While there are multiple approaches to conduct usability testing, we recommend the use of the NCPI & VIMM Model. The VIMM model was introduced by Human Factors International.
What is the NCPI & VIMM Model?
NCPI framework breaks down a website/system into following segments: Navigation, Content, Presentation & Interaction. One way to model the known capability and limitations of the NCPI elements is VIMM
VIMM stands for Visual, Intellectual, Memory and Motor testing. These four simple concepts covered in the model, account for 80% of the usability issues.
The VIMM Model is a way to focus on how usable your product or website is for a user. It dives deep into understanding which aspect comes naturally to the user and what requires a decent amount of work or thought process from his end.
The end goal of using this model is to ‘reduce the load’ of the user in these four key areas:
- Visual load
- Intellectual load
- Memory load
- Motor load
“Does a particular interaction involve high demands on the user’s memory?”
“Does it include a lot of motor work because the user has to switch back and forth from a mouse to the keyboard?”
VIMM answers all your questions about how a user is likely to interact with your product, helping you optimize it for ease-of-use. The model describes the four ways we make users think too much or work too hard while interacting with an interface.
Simply put, VIMM is the smartest way to optimize your user experience.
Conducting usability test
Using Affect Lab, you can take your usability testing to another level and dive deeper into the VIMM model to understand what a target user really thinks about your product or website. Here’s how to get started:
With our neuro technology, we can quantify user emotions to provide unadulterated feedback on your product or website. Using smart algorithms, Affect Lab combines written feedback and screen recording to show you ‘exactly’ what a user perceives of your product or website.
The actionable insights on the dashboard then enable you optimize your strategy for better design and development, which have a direct impact on your top line revenue.
Why use Affect Lab UX Testing Platform?
With the focus on fulfilling the 4 segments of the VIMM model, Affect Lab uses brainwave mapping, facial decoding, a questionnaire and navigation video recording to generate an actionable report with the following:
- Quantitative UX metrics
- Behavioural data
- Captured video
- Detailed design evaluation
- Actionable insights
The easy testing and ability to use frequently with a quick turn around time, has helped brands across different industries optimize their user experience for higher conversion rates. Affect Lab offers you the flexibility to test across all operating systems, web browsers and devices.
The conversion focused actionable data helps you improve your site and product user experience from the ground up.
You can also take a look at some of our case studies here.