Usability testing for websites is something many of us should do much better, and I’m as guilty as anyone. So why, I thought, don’t we do it together?
A lot of money can be spent on usability testing, but that doesn’t need to be the case; testing on the cheap with a few mates is way, way better than no testing at all. And doing it on the cheap means it can be done early and often, which is even better.
I suspect there are quite a lot of people like me in the voluntary sector who recognise the need for testing but feel like we lack the budget or expertise to do it right. But what if we got together occasionally and tested on each other? That way we’d develop our competence in the subject while also generating invaluable feedback on our work.
Off the top of my head, it would work something like this:
- find an appropriate space (a room in an office would be ideal, but a friendly pub or coffee shop with free wifi would be fine);
- divide the time (90 mins or 2hrs?) into testing slots (of 20mins?);
- each person should be able to test their product on each of the others (or at least four if the group is large);
- follow an existing model (such as advocated by Steve Krug).
If you’re reading this (if anyone is reading this) and thinking this could be a good idea, let me know in the comments below. If it seems popular I’ll have a go at setting up a meeting (which is likely to be either in London or Birmingham (UK)).