The Critical Importance of Testing Early & Often

* This article is part of a White Paper called “HOW TO MAKE YOUR ONLINE SOFTWARE INSTANTLY USABLE & EFFECTIVE.” Effective usability can be achieved by maintaining constant awareness of your user’s needs throughout the software development process. While focusing intently on the content your webpage hopes to communicate, accessibility and usability are not always at the forefront of consideration. Gartner reports: “Enterprises too often associate usability and user experience (UX) work as a nice-to-have aesthetic rather than an important business value generator. As a result, poor usability undermines business results with external and internal stakeholders. User-Centered Design Maintaining a user-centered design is the essential to ensuring the success of your software once finalized. The earlier you begin testing the better the software will become. Creating software based on user-centered design is highly dependent on constant product testing throughout each stage of development. Modern applications allow experts to test their software’s content, information architecture, visual design, interaction design and general user satisfaction. These can be conducted by means of a variety of surveys, tests, applications and online resources created solely to assist experts in the development and testing of their new software. Data: Qualitative & Quantitative The data collected from such tests must be utilized effectively in order to successfully improve the product. The data can be divided up into qualitative and quantitative categories. Qualitative data refers to participant’s comments and reactions to the testing, while quantitative data refers to what actually occurred. Once your data has been organized it is important to evaluate your software’s level of usability based on the results. From there, team members and experts can recommend potential software improvements and later implement these suggestions. Test and Test Again Once all changes have been made it is time to re-test the product in order to measure how effective these changes were. Remember that usability is not a single rudimentary element of your product, but rather an ongoing combination of necessary factors occurring simultaneously within any successful software. Intuitive & Responsive Usability Having an intuitive and responsive website design that provides effortless navigation for its users serves as a crucial factor of usability. Making sure your software is easy to learn and can be conducted adequately by first time users serves as another necessary factor. Similarly that software must be equally as usable by an advanced user looking to accomplish more complex tasks with the product. Creating memorable software which users will not forget during future visits to your site will significantly contribute to their positive user experience. It is important that any possible errors made by your users are minor or recoverable, as if not this can significantly contribute to having a negative and frustrating user experience. This article is part of a White Paper called “HOW TO MAKE YOUR ONLINE SOFTWARE INSTANTLY USABLE & EFFECTIVE.” Claim your free copy by filling the form below.
The White Paper covers a range of topics including: Chapter 1: What is Usability? Chapter 2: Usability is Crucial to Your Software’s Success Chapter 3: Poor Usability Damages Your Product & Your Company’s Reputation Chapter 4: The Critical Importance of Testing Early & Often Chapter 5: 5 Steps to Effective Usability Chapter 6: Interesting Usability Tools You Must Know About
Megan Wilson is user experience specialist & editor of UX Motel. She is also the Quality Assurance and UX Specialist at WalkMe Megan.w(at)