Usability Testing

Optimise your digital services for the greatest returns by gathering feedback from real users through a range of specialist usability testing services.

Why invest in usability testing?

Delivering insight into the expectations, mental models and behaviours of your users, usability testing is one of the most powerful ways to improve your websites and applications for increased satisfaction, repeat visits and higher conversion rates, and is ideally suited for optimising current products and services that may be underperforming as well as cost-effectively validating early ideas and concepts. 

By observing how users representative of your target audience really interact with your services, our experienced consultants build up an independent picture of what does and doesn’t work; reducing the risk of false assumptions being made and keeping all decisions focused on the needs of real-world users to ensure that your final products are as useful and usable as possible. The returns from this activity have been proven to be significant and, importantly, long-term, and with usability increasingly a dominant competitive differentiator it is a critically important consideration for all organisations.

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Additionally, with developers spending up to 50% of their time on rework that is actually avoidable and changes to live products costing up to a staggering hundred times as much as fixes made before development is complete, testing with low-fidelity designs can help identify and resolve any issues at an early stage to avoid unexpected costs appearing later in the build. Validating that your site or application performs well before significant investment is committed, this helps improve project margins and enables you to focus your budget on extending and enhancing services to create additional value for your business and your users.

Usability testing at Box UK

Covering a wide variety of tools, techniques and approaches, usability testing can be conducted at virtually any stage of a project, from rapid testing of sketched designs through to prototype and beta testing, as well as reviews of existing mobile, tablet, desktop and intranet services. At Box UK our user experience consultants are skilled in a full range of testing solutions and will work with you to define a solution that meets your exact requirements, including developing custom testing scripts featuring various scenarios and supplementary questions, and determining which deliverables and testing methods will deliver greatest value for your organisation.

For enhanced insight we can also identify business-critical pages, functionality and user journeys on your site, targeting these as a priority to make a positive difference as quickly as possible. For example, optimising checkout processes, search functionality, and product and category pages may have the greatest impact in the e-commerce sector, while more content-based sites can benefit from an assessment of information architecture, forms and accessibility.

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Which service for you?

Guerrilla testing

Using portable testing equipment and a relatively simple test plan to gather information from users in natural environments, guerrilla testing is often used to test initial concepts and other low-fidelity clickable or interactive prototypes for web and mobile devices. As it typically requires shorter timescales and lower overheads than many other forms of testing, guerrilla testing is also well-suited to validating specific design ideas thought a project, such as getting immediate feedback on a page layout or assessing the ease of use of a sign-up form, before investing in further design and development activities. This also makes it perfect for regular testing as part of Agile sprints in order to test assumptions and validate key design decisions early in the process.

Unmoderated remote testing
In unmoderated remote testing, subjects participate using their own device without dedicated moderators, and screen-sharing software records all activity. This enables tests to be administered to a large database of users simultaneously, so is ideal for getting larger volumes of user testing data and insights in a short period of time. Illustrating how users complete set tasks such as finding information, purchasing items and registering for an account, this approach can be used throughout a project to provide valuable quantitative evidence about website and mobile user experiences, to support design decisions and highlight any areas that are particularly challenging or confusing for users. You could even consider testing competitor websites or mobile apps in order to better understand your competitive advantage and opportunities to surpass their offerings.

Moderated remote testing
For qualitative data on how users interact with your site, moderated remote testing can prove a highly cost-effective solution, especially if you need to test with users who are unable to easily visit a usability testing lab in person. Similar to lab-based testing, one-to-one sessions take place between the participant and a specialist Box UK consultant, although the participant is contributing online rather than in person.

Unlike unmoderated testing with predefined test plans, moderated sessions are flexible enough to adapt in response to user actions while allowing the observer to retain control and get the user back on track if they go off on an unproductive tangent. As both screen and user activity is recorded in real-time and the observer is able to fully support the user, facial expressions and other behaviour that may have otherwise gone unnoticed can be captured to provide a further layer of insight. Additionally, with a greater ability to filter testing subjects than that offered by guerrilla or unmoderated remote testing, moderated testing can be employed on projects where a very specific selection of users is required, such as individuals from a certain area, of a certain age, or in a particular profession. 

Lab-based testing
Proven to be one of the most effective methods for discovering usability and accessibility issues, facilitated one-to-one lab testing delivers detailed qualitative results and is ideal if you have a particularly large or complex testing scope. Employing ‘think aloud’ techniques, subjects are observed interacting with your site or application, with a Box UK consultant facilitating each session while another analyses the activity taking place. This intensive approach allows us to gather valuable information about the exact journeys users are making, as well as their initial impressions and decision-making processes. 

At Box UK we have dedicated, purpose-built usability testing facilities, including a viewing room with state-of-the-art audio and visual technology that enables clients to observe users in-person or from anywhere in the world via remote video link. Transmitting sessions in this way rather than using one-way mirrors has been found to improve the accuracy and trustworthiness of results, as users feel less intimidated and therefore act more naturally, and enables stakeholders to fully analyse and discuss the results in comfortable surroundings, with recordings of sessions also available to take away for future reference. 

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Reports and recommendations

No matter what combination of testing approaches you choose, our consultants will perform detailed analysis of any results including assessing task timings and success rates, answers from system usability scale questionnaires, and participant feedback in order to identify top trends, priority issues and suggestions for improvement. A variety of reporting options are available according to your specific needs, from guided sessions and top line overviews through to fully-detailed documentation, with all findings presented in a pragmatic, recommendation-driven format. 

The right choice

  • Highly experienced team with a portfolio of usability testing projects conducted for clients across FMCG, finance and leisure industries
  • Success stories include a 27% increase in conversions following implementation of usability testing recommendations
  • Dedicated user testing suite with usability testing lab featuring sketching boards, a waiting area, client viewing room, and kitchen and toilet facilities
  • A comfortable, informal environment makes the user feel relaxed to improve the quality of any results
  • Portable equipment enables testing to be conducted at our offices, client premises and public locations
  • Get in touch today to discuss your usability testing project