Do You Need To Perform Mobile Usability Testing On Your APP?
Do you need to perform mobile usability testing on your APP? That is a good question for those people who aren’t familiar with App development or this type of testing. So today we will discuss the basics of mobile usability testing, what place it has in a standard testing cycle and why we think it is invaluable to the ultimate success of your app.
What is Mobile Usability Testing?
Testing comes in all shapes and sizes for both mobile devices and the apps that people use on them. The idea behind ‘usability’ is to assess how easy the user interface is to use for your target users. You can apply an ‘ease-of-use’ scale to help understand how various aspects compare to each other in the tester’s opinion.
During Mobile Usability Testing you will be watching:
• What a tester does
• What a tester says
• How they interact and react to each aspect of the app
• What areas spark questions or confusion
• Over the shoulder view of the tester and what they see
Usually you record all of the sessions as well as asking testers to complete feedback forms afterwards. This then allows for additional analysis of the testing sessions by multiple parties who did not take place in the testing itself but can then use the information easily to implement design changes.
This type of testing can be implemented in multiple spots of the development cycle such as after the initial prototype is created and then after changes to primary features. Most certainly it should be utilized at least once or twice before rolling out a final product.
Why you need MUT!
We have regularly discussed the importance of testing in the digital world. This goes for everything from changes on a website to all aspects of an APP. With the variety of options available to every consumer, the responsibility is placed firmly on the business to produce the best product possible these days and that means crafting something that is tailored towards your specific user base.
That tailoring is impossible if you aren’t testing.
After testing you should be able to answer all of these questions:
• Which features do users enjoy the most and are of the highest value?
• Which features do users enjoy the least?
• Are any aspects confusing or unclear in any way?
• Would users prefer if the application behaved differently, looked differently, was arranged differently?
• Are there features not available they would like to see?
• How does this app compare to other similar offerings on the market from a user experience aspect?
• How similar is the user experience using the app on various device platforms?
You have to remember that while you can have everyone in your office, friends and even family test for you it is not that same as hosting a traditional testing phases with people that fit your target user demographic. After all, there are variations in and how people use devices including even small things like how they hold them, the lighting they typically use them under and other aspects designers might not anticipate when the app works its way through the design process.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that testing is always an important, an often overlooked, step in the design process. You need to perform mobile usability testing on your APP because the APP world is so incredibly competitive and saturated with competing products that you need to put the best product possible out there both initially and with subsequent updates if you want to be successful.