“Usability answers the question, Can the user accomplish their goal?” – Joyce Lee, Human Factors Design at Apple
This quotation by Joyce Lee is the quintessential statement concerning the goal of, as well as the need for usability testing. In order to answer this question, it is vital to connect with a well-structured and well-defined website usability testing service. Otherwise, you will never know for certain whether your site is optimised for customer conversion or not.
Usability testing: What and why?
Before we look at some of the reasons why usability testing is a vital part of the software development life cycle, let’s take a look at a concise definition of usability testing.
Usability testing best practice employs user testing to track down all of the website’s usability issues.Essentially, user testing is the process whereby users perform all of the tasks required to purchase the products or services offered for sale on the website.
Use test cases that are made up of step-by-step instructions are designed to identify usability issues. Once these problems have been defined and resolved, the website is re-evaluated as part of an iterative process.
Furthermore, it is vital to note that there is a difference between User Acceptance Testing (UAT) and usability testing. UAT’s primary goal is to look for functional issues, while usability testing is about measuring the usability of the site’s design.
Benefits of usability testing
It is important to remember that the most important question about the site’s design that needs to be asked is whether the user can accomplish what the site requires them to. Furthermore, a negative answer is not wrong. In actual fact, it is a positive result because it allows you to fix the design flaws.
Therefore, here are several benefits to implementing a rigorous usability testing phase as part of the website development lifecycle:
Poor usability detracts from the brand’s value
The modern consumer is impatient. If your site is difficult to use, visitors will move off it without spending the time required to respond to the call-to-action, resulting in the potential loss of a customer conversion. And this will impact your company’s bottom line, ultimately leading to the closure of your business.
Usability testing saves time and money
Making sure that usability testing is conducted during the design phase will save time, money, as well as your brand’s reputation. If user testing is skipped or very little time is allocated to it, you will end up spending a fair amount of time and money fixing the website and repairing a damaged reputation.
User testing needs to be an integral part of the website’s lifecycle
Not only is usability testing a core element of the site’s development lifecycle, but it also needs to continue for as long as the website exists. Why?
Essentially, design phase user testing is conducted in a controlled environment. It does not take the external variables that impact user behaviour into account. Therefore, it is important to continue with user testing throughout the site’s life to ensure your site’s user experience remains a continuous focus.
As stated several times already, usability testing is a core part of any website’s lifecycle. What hasn’t been noted, but is equally important, is that while it is possible to conduct user testing by yourself, it is far better to contact a professional agency such as Polished Pixels. In this way, you are guaranteed that industry standards and best practices are adhered to.