I see that now that the topic of the article is qualitative research in UX, it might be interesting to start with a little research on the income of a UX specialist.
The way of thinking and doing research in UX (user experience) both qualitatively and quantitatively has evolved rapidly in recent years. What used to be just a specialized field is now seen as something that everyone in an organization can and should participate in. As a result, the definition of qualitative research in UX is also changing.
Whether you are a veteran UX specialist or you have just become familiar with this concept, research in user experience design is rapidly evolving and expanding, and it won’t be long before qualitative research in ux has a special place in all businesses.
Considering that all of Google’s policies are aimed at giving more importance to the user and producing valuable content and good usability, day by day the role of user experience design (UX) in website design becomes more colorful and As a result, the job market becomes hotter and more demanding.
Table of Contents
What is qualitative research in UX?
Qualitative research in UX or UX Qualitative research relies on observing and collecting non-numerical insights such as opinions and motivations. Basically, research that is quantitative gives you hard data, while qualitative research helps you explore deeper ideas.
UX Research is an important part of all projects. The time and manner of conducting research should be planned. But what kind of UX research should you plan?
In general, UX research returns two types of data, qualitative and quantitative, often shortened to Qual and Quant.
Qual – observational findings, human emotions and behaviors.
Quant – real metrics and data.
We can also divide user research into two other directions:
Attitude: listen to the words of users, for example in interviews.
Behavioral: You see their actions by studying their actions.
Examples of qualitative and quantitative research in UX
Qualitative – During user testing, it was observed that some participants had to re-read the first paragraph on the landing page to understand the message.
Quantitative – The average time spent on the checkout page is 17.3 seconds.
In general, both qualitative and quantitative research are required for any project.
False metrics of qualitative research in UX
The key to qualitative research in ux, in using qual and quant, is not to mix data and create a false metric.
For example: you run three collaborative design sessions. During each session, someone said they did not use the online reminder feature. Although you’ve heard it all over the board, you can’t say “100% of people don’t use reminders”.
You didn’t hear it from all participants, and most participants probably weren’t asked directly if they used the feature.
You should also be careful not to say “in 100% of the workshops people said they didn’t use the online reminder feature”. If, for example, there were 10 people in each workshop. You heard this from one person per session, and other people may actually all be using this feature. This means that “10 of the participants do not use the online reminder feature”.
If you compare the two separately:
“In 100% of the workshops, people said that they do not use the online reminder feature”
“10 of the participants do not use the online reminder”
It is clear that the first statement is an overstatement compared to the second statement. Paying attention to this is one of the important points of qualitative research in ux.
Qualitative research approach in ux
For qualitative research in ux, it is always good to use qual and quant ie qualitative and quantitative data. Using both you can identify the hypothesis and then find the criteria and criteria that can prove the hypothesis.
When conducting only one type of research, you often learn how to interpret the results. Let’s take a three-step process as an example. You have conducted quantitative research to examine the time spent at each stage.
You may find that step B takes too long.
Then you conduct some user interviews with end users. While talking about the process (qualitative research in UX), they all say “step A is confusing”, “not very well explained”, “all you do is check the box And then click next”.
The problem is not the length of stage B, but the shortness of stage A. You already have the quality of the feedback and the amount of time spent proving where the problem really is.
8 qualitative research methods in UX
At first, we mention the methods and methods of qualitative research in UX, which are used in both qualitative and quantitative research.
1- Funnel Analysis – analysis funnel
Funnel analysis is the process of monitoring the steps or events that occur during a process to bring the user to a desired outcome. Depending on whether the process is tracked through analysis or tested using paper prototypes, the data returned will be quantitative or qualitative.
Surveys are a great way to gather information on a large scale. But they have their weaknesses. Its biggest weakness is the difference in people’s perception. For example, the voting scale (1 to 5) is 4 for one person, 3 for another person, and 5 for others. There are also a number of other biological theories and studies that can be used to create better surveys.
3- Usability testing
- Paper prototyping
- Tree testing
- Card sorting
- Visual affordance
Usability testing is often considered part of qualitative research in UX and is a method of testing interfaces with users before they are released. Usability testing is often based on one of four exploratory methods:
- Time – the time a user spends on an action or set of actions
- Ease – the ease with which a user performs a task or set of actions
- Flow – is the way a user moves through a process or the actions they take to achieve a set goal
- Emotion – how the user feels about the user interface and how they interact with it
4- A/B testing – A/B testing
A/B testing is the process of testing two different options and determining which one performs better. This can be done through paper prototyping or through interactive tools using analytics.
The above methods are common between qualitative and quantitative research. You can also read about some of them in the ux quantitative research article.
In the following, you will learn about other qualitative research methods in UX that are specific to Qualitative research UX:
5- Shadow sessions
Shadows sessions are when you observe a user using the system in real life. This approach allows you to see actual usage rather than perceived usage. In qualitative research in ux it is often referred to as immersive or observational research.
As a method of qualitative research in UX, interviews allow you to ask questions of users to learn about their processes and actions. This allows you to delve deeper into their motivations, frustrations, relationships, and context.
7- Focus groups
This method of qualitative research is similar to interviews, but instead of one person, the meeting is held simultaneously with several participants. When working in group meetings it is always important to make sure all voices are heard. Siso has a training course titled “How to Facilitate Workshops” that can help ensure all voices are heard.
8- Diary records
Journaling is also referred to as daily studies. Diaries require users to record their interactions, timing, and processes while using a system. Diary records are set over a specific period of time, usually a day or a week.
Empathy is at the heart of design. Without the understanding of what others see, feel, and experience, design is a pointless task
Tim Brown, CEO of the innovation and design firm IDEO