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Unattended qualitative research services get users to submit webcam videos, images, and/or spoken feedback about your product.
The developers were ostensibly there to talk about A/B testing but admitted that the original interfaces for both of their successful web products were informally guerilla-tested with participants ranging from the developers’ significant others to people in the hallway.
Task elicitation is the most direct way to gather performance feedback on a particular task, which is why it’s also the most popular. This is a remote version of a tried-and-true user research method.
You give participants a stack of randomly shuffled cards, each with an item written on it, and then ask the participants to sort the cards into groups that make sense to them.
Using some of the new web applications popping up, you can effectively do remote user research—that is, user research conducted over the phone and your computer.
As Dana Chisnell points out, usability testing only takes a few steps, and it’s easy to do remote testing with minimal cost and preparation time.The idea is to get a sense of how users naturally categorize different concepts so that you can structure your interface’s categorization scheme accordingly.