Types of User Experience Research You Should Try (Do!)

How to implement your UX research to make user-centered product designs

A good or even successful product is one that users can easily use that helps them do what they need or get what they want. Effective User Experience (UX) design helps us with this, and it plays a huge part of directing you on how to best design your product, whatever they may be!

To create an effective UX strategy, you’ll need to do your research - you can’t decide these for yourself because if there’s one thing you should remember: it’s that you are not your user

This research includes studying what matters most to your users, what their main pain points are, how your users would interact with your product, and many more. Anything that will help you better solve their problems in the most efficient ways.

From my podcast episodes so far, all of the guest speakers (who are all successful product developers!) have emphasized on the importance of being customer-obsessed, and doing frequent researching and interviews to justify your products and its design.

So I wanted to spread the knowledge and share the different ways you can do your research. Let’s get on with it!

Types of research for User Experience (UX)

Qualitative vs. quantitative research

When it comes to any form of research, you’ll always be prompted with whether you should do qualitative or quantitative research. For the best results, do both!

Both types of research can give you crazy amounts of information and value you can use for your product development. To understand the big picture of your users, you need to know what happens and why they happen. 

Get quantitative data for things that can be measurable, i.e. how long each user would use your product, how they would rate its functionalities, anything that is useful to you. 

For qualitative data, you can use this for a deeper understanding of each user, i.e. how they feel towards your product, what type of pain points they want to solve, what their preferences are in terms of design, etc. 


Attitudinal vs. behavioral research

Attitudinal research involves assessing your user’s preconceived or current thoughts/attitudes/feelings about your product. You could ask them what features they like/dislike, why they do, what they think about the design, how it makes them feel, etc.

Behavioral research is looking at what the user actually does with or on your product. This could be looking at how they flow from the first page to the second or third page, what they click on/press, what attracts their eyes, and so on.

Behavioral research should tell you what’s happening, and attitudinal tells you why it’s happening. You can use both qualitative and quantitative research for these!


UX research methods

User Experience design helps ensure that your products are designed especially for your users, and should drive a culture of user-centric design and thinking for your whole team.

Here are a few ways you can implement your UX research: 


Interviews

The most popular type of method would likely have to be live interviews. Formally, or a casual chat with coffee (or even ice cream in some cases! ;) Have personally experienced this haha). These interviews help you collect mainly qualitative data, and even quantitative if you’d have a survey they could fill right before! 

Make sure to ask open-ended questions, listen closely, and analyze their non-verbal behavior! Use this opportunity to have a deeper understanding of your users complex feelings and experiences. Listen well, so you can have follow-up questions!


Surveys

Surveys are a great way to collect quick data from countless people at the same time. You can use this to collect quantitative data (especially ones that aren’t as clear to your team i.e. developers, marketers). As they’re quantitative, it’s nice to also visualize your results in the end and find any trends that can be useful to you!


Usability Testing

Oftentimes, UX researchers would choose a select group of people that they can observe as they use your product, or if it’s remote, use a platform to record how they interact with it. 

Be sure to track what they like, don’t like, where they get stuck or confused, areas that could be “clearer”, where they “exit” and many other behavioral patterns that could matter most to you.

You could also use tools like Google Analytics and Hotjar to track user behavior, without having to choose a select group - it’s just getting data from whoever uses your product! Check out my other article on 7 ways to use Google Analytics for product development


Diary studies

For long-term researching, this is one that researchers also love to use - diaries. You’d ask a select group of people who can agree to this long-term research, as it would require them to do regular intervals and updates on how they use your product and the impact they get from it. This can be time-consuming, but if it’s a method that would suit your product (i.e. an app that analyzes your sleeping patterns, and aims to improve your sleeping qualities). 

Doing your UX research, and doing it well only means more for you, your team and you product! It gives you a competitive advantage knowing your users and their behvaiors, and using that to improve or develop your product. 

Know any other cool methods of UX research we should all try? Feel free to connect with me on my social media and let’s get a conversation going! 🚀