This article was originally published on the Google Ventures Blog.
Blue Bottle Coffee does it. Nest does it. RetailMeNot, 23andMe, and Google do it. It’s UX research, a secret weapon used by successful companies to design better products.
As a UX Research Partner at Google Ventures, I’ve conducted hundreds of customer interviews with startups in our portfolio. Time and again we see that user studies are a key ingredient for great design. Through quick, scrappy user studies we’ve discovered ways to boost conversion, found usability issues before launch, figured out why users were behaving in certain ways, and resolved nagging internal product debates.
User research is like the flossing of product design — we all want to do it, we believe we should do it, but it’s hard to get started and make it a habit. To help with this hurdle, join me in #UXmarch, a commitment to rally your troops and run at least one user study this March. I’ll help guide you through the basic steps to getting it done.
I’ll send you some materials to get started:
- Templates and worksheets:
- Checklist for how to prepare in days leading up to interviews
- How to write a survey to quickly select the best people to interview
- Questions that we’ve found to reveal great info from customers
- Instructions for creating an interview guide to structure a one-hour interview
- Non-disclosure and consent agreement for your participants to sign.
- An invitation to a limited number of office hours offered throughout March for personal help
- A promo code for 3 free tests on UserTesting.com
For the first time I also want to share video of a class I’ve taught repeatedly for the Google Ventures portfolio at our Startup Lab: User Research, Quick ‘n’ Dirty. The two-hour class includes everything you need to know to plan and conduct a study right now.
And remember: Friends don’t let friends launch before testing. Share the #UXmarch pledge with a buddy to help make sure you follow through. Let us know how it goes! We’re here to help.