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29 Questions to Consider Asking Users During Prototype TestingNovember 6, 2019
Prototype testing lets you discover whether users can achieve their goals and solve their problems using your solution. It’s a critical step that should be taken before any successful product launch.
But sometimes figuring out what questions to ask while you’re testing your prototype can be challenging, so we’ve put together a list of questions you can turn to.
We grouped our list of 29 questions into the different topics you should consider exploring in prototype testing. Aim to choose at least one from each section to make sure all your bases are covered. We’ve also included a few pro-tips here as food for thought.
Use this list of questions as a starting point for writing questions tailored to your organization. Pick and choose what works for you. Go ahead and copy and paste them into your own feedback forms! We won’t mind.
Questions 1-6: First Glance Testing
Validate if the design communicates what the product/website is at first glance.
- What do you think this tool/ website is for?
- What do you think you can do on this website/ in this app?
- When would you use this?
- Who do you think this tool is for?
- Is there anything this tool resembles? If yes, what?
- What, if anything, doesn’t make sense here?
Pro-Tip: If you’re testing digitally with a feedback tool like Qualaroo, you can even time your questions to pop up after 5 seconds if you want to do a more accurate first glance test.
Questions 7-13: Task-specific by Use Case
Develop task-specific questions for the types of actions you know users will take on your site given your industry.
- How did you recognize that the product was on sale? (E-commerce and retail)
- What information about shipping was missing, if any? (E-commerce and retail)
- What were the accepted payments methods? (E-commerce and retail/SaaS)
- How did you know the plan you picked was the right one for you? (SaaS)
- Do you think booking a flight on this website was easier or more difficult than on other websites you have used in the past? (Travel)
- Did sending money via this app feel safe? (Banking/FinTech)
- Do you think data gathered by this app is reliable? (Internet)
Pro-tip: If you ask users to perform specific tasks like finding a product, booking a flight, sending money (etc.,) consider structuring your tasks as scenarios instead. See Mistake #4 in this article to learn more about what we mean by scenarios.
Keep reading for more universal questions to ask after task completion for any use case.
Questions 14-25: Assess usability
Ask these questions after users complete tasks to gain a better understanding of usability.
- Was there anything that surprised you? If yes, what?
- Was there anything you expected to find that was not there?
- What was difficult or strange about this task, if anything?
- What was easy about this task?
- Did you find everything you were looking for?
- Was there anything that didn’t look the way you expected? If so, what was it?
- What was missing, if anything?
- What was unnecessary, if anything?
- Was anything out of place? If so, what was it?
- If you had a magic wand, what would you change about this experience/task?
- How would you rate the difficulty level of this task?
- Did it take you more or less time than you expected to complete this task? Would you normally spend this amount of time on doing this?
Pro-tip: If you are having users complete more than one task, limit yourself to no more than 3 questions after each task to help prevent survey fatigue.
Questions 26-29: Holistic experience
Finalize testing with questions that collect information you haven’t captured yet.
- Try to list the features our tool has. – This question allows you to see what stood out the most to the user. Users never use all the functionalities of a product or website. Especially with our current tendency to multiply them in our tools, instead of minimizing their number. This question also may indicate what features users ignored or may have simply not noticed in the design.
- Do you feel this application/tool/website is easy to use?
- What would you change in this application/website, if anything?
- How would you improve this tool/website/service?
Pro-tip: However you phrase your final questions, we recommend using an open-ended answer format so that you can provide users with a space to share feedback more freely. Doing so allows them to flesh out their experience during testing and can allow them to bring up issues that you may not have even asked about.
Bonus questions: Planning your next session
Instead of recruiting brand new participants again, ask testers if they would be interested in joining future sessions.
- Would you be interested in participating in future research?
- Is there someone you know who might also be interested?
Pro-tip: Depending on your budget, you can use software tools that allow you to conduct remote prototype testing and then recruit a few select users who would be interested in coming in for a more in-depth session. Doing it this way allows you to choose participants based on the quality of feedback provided in initial testing, rather than bringing in participants who may not offer the same level of insight. Learn how to do this with Qualaroo.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to test your prototype, be sure to check out this step by step guide for helpful tips. You’ll find this original list of questions as well as in-depth info about the benefits of prototype testing, deciding what to test, task scenarios and more.
This post was written and contributed by Alex Birkett of HubSpot.
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