Posted in Development
Nearly every app aims to be unique. Each one attempts to serve a specific purpose and the target group users is vast and varied. Consequently, if you want your app to be a successful one, you might want to rethink your development process.
The cookie cutter technique of app production may be quicker to get to market, but the lasting power of such products leaves a lot to be desired. In the end, one major category of app success reigns as king above graphics, features, and price.
User Experience (aka UX)
Without good UX, any app will ultimately fail. Furthermore, so can the reputation of the developer. True large named entities will continue to have a following regardless of a failing application, but that is usually in connection to other great products that they’ve produced. If you have an abundance of those, you can quit reading this article now. If not, consider the 5 research techniques below that can bring your app to the next level before it hits the Apposhere.
Communicating with users on a personal level will help you understand their perspective and motivation. Find and interview people who are a good representation of your app’s target users. Ask them candid questions and encourage equally candid answers. For example, you can ask interviewees what part of the app has been challenging for them. Then you’ll know exactly what to fix and why.
This method of gathering information is extremely reliable because it shows results in real-time. Users are observed and interviewed on the spot in real-world instances, like their workplace, so that each problem they face is immediately identified. The data can help you look at the problem in a new way and subsequently come up with a fitting solution.
Although popular, surveys must be thoroughly planned and written to get the best results. Users will be able to answer more accurately if the survey follows a logical pattern and is easy to comprehend. Feedback on various aspects of the app should be obtained. They can also be used to compile data from user interviews and contextual inquiries.
Individual interviews cannot give you as much insight as group discussions. You will observe that users are more likely to open up and engage each other especially over conflicting ideas. As these type of discussions warm up, true thoughts are revealed and a wealth of information can be gathered.
Usability testing can help pinpoint issues in the UX and find out the disparity between user expectations and user experience. Interaction with a prototype or early version of the app can determine how successful users are in performing tasks specifically designed for this purpose. Quantifiable results on the user’s success or failure to complete the task will enable you to solve any UX problems that were encountered during the process. Each research method provides different types of data and is appropriate for different phases during app development. A contextual inquiry, for instance, will reveal results from actual user engagement while a survey is more about their perception of how the app works. The time needed to conduct this research should be factored into the overall timeframe for app development. Relying on speculations and assumptions will be rendered unnecessary if you have real tangible information from users through the use of these research methods.
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