How can I user test my website?

Let’s have a look at the user testing platforms in the market.

User testing is a way to evaluate the experience a user has with a product

So you’ve spent hours upon hours building a website. Ideally you would be user testing your website or app at various stages of the build process to ensure customer delight. What if you haven’t? Don’t want to? Or are struggling to get this done?

Then you might have considered outsourcing this process or finding a tool to help you manage this. No advertising tricks or gimmicks here dear reader, we are also considering the same. So let’s go on this journey together and take a look at the user testing products in the market.

What do user testing platforms offer?

There are a whole range of tools in the market that offer everything from recruiting users, providing testing tools or tools to manage test output.

There’s also the question of whether you want to conduct tests live or remotely and if remote, whether they should happen whilst you’re there or in the users’ own time.

What you choose depends on your preference. For us, we prefer to recruit our own users, so we’re looking for a tool that provides our test environment and helps us analyse and store results.

Recruit users

UserTesting.com offers a pool of testers

These guys have bagged the best name in the market, so let’s cover User Testing first! They focus on their speed at delivering insights with their panel of testers and ability to use template tests to yield responses in as little as 2 hours with no research experience.

They also want you to be able to share insights with colleagues across your organisation. This coupled with the fact that they don’t display their pricing makes me think they are targeting the larger, corporate clientele, but I will update you once I hear back from them!

User Feel offer more than 35,000 testers speaking 40 languages. You can filter testers by various demographic criteria and use screener questions to filter the testing panel. Alternatively, you can use your own panel of testers.

User feel offer mid market pricing at $50–100 per user session. There are discounts if you pay in advance. Overall this seems worthwhile, but our favourite is below:

Pingpong are our favourite for user tester recruitment

PingPong manages everything from recruitment to interview scheduling to payment! It’s a one stop shop for all your user testing needs. The site’s user interface is really easy to understand, which I appreciated. They have a panel of “tens of thousands” of testers or you can recruit your own. It’s worth noting that Pingpong focuses on researcher led interviews, rather than ones where the tester uses the product by themselves.

Each 30 minute interview costs EUR 75+VAT with EUR 20 going directly to the testers, but you can pay them more if you want. This pricing is also mid market.

Overall I felt that this was the best option if you want a platform which recruits users. The interface is beautiful and it’s really easy to understand.

Conduct tests

I immediately fell in love with Lookback, which does not offer user recruitment but offers everything else.

We fell in love with Lookback

Lookback offers three things; 1) remote, live testing, 2)Remote, self testing by the user and 3) in-person testing. The last one I found a bit more complex to understand as a UX newbie and it feels like they’re ferrying customers to consider the first two options, rather than this one.

Lookback has an impressive array of clientele:

Lookback has some pretty impressive customers

The whole product seemed really seamless and intuitive. Every project generates a link for users to join a live session and instructions are given for how they can get onto the platform on whichever device they’re using. Live sessions are automatically recorded in the cloud and you can share the interviews live with colleagues.

Lookback is billed per “collaborator”, which means the person leading the interview from your organisation. This is $60–120+ per month (billed monthly) and they offer a 14 day free trial.

We were really impressed by this product and decided to go with this one. I’ll write another article to tell you how we got on with it!

Loop11 was not super easy to understand! It was so complex that I gave up trying after a few minutes. They also offer consulting, which to me seemed opportunistic and was another reason to stop reading! Their pricing is $50–200+ per user billed monthly and they also offer a 14 day free trial.

Analyse and store test results

Dovetail look like a great option for storing your test data

Dovetail helps you store, analyse, and collaborate on user research in one place. You can save notes, images, audio, and video. This is $100–400 monthly billing with a minimum of 5 users and they offer a 30 day free trial. This seems like a lovely product to try if you’re only interested in storing your testing results.

Handrail offers the same as Dovetail, however the user interface is pretty old school. Accordingly, it’s a lot cheaper so if you don’t have much cash and need a place to store and analyse your test results, it might be worth your while at $9–200+ monthly billing. They also have a 30 day free trial.

Junior developer