User Experience Research

User experience research is the process of defining and answering questions to learn more about a user and the products they interact with, usually to propose new design solutions.

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What do you do as a user experience researcher?

User experience research isn’t only about answering questions, it’s about knowing what questions to ask, too. As a UX researcher, I strive to gain a larger understanding of the potential and/or existing users, their pain-points, routines, mental models, and opinions. One product can create a ripple effect throughout a person’s day and, as a researcher, it’s my job to define and document that ripple effect then present potential solutions backed by data and insights.

What does your process look like?

UX research is a constant, iterative process that requires adaption not only for every project but as every project evolves and grows with new data. Generally, I follow the methodology below:

  1. Define: What am I trying to answer? What does the client/team hope to learn?
  2. Prepare: What research already exists and what can I learn from it?
  3. Explore: What can our users tell us to answer our question?
  4. Affinitize: What does our data mean?
  5. Design: What solutions can we create from our data?
  6. Evaluate: Are our solutions effective? Do they answer our research questions?

Each step of the process comes with its own methodology. For example, in the prepare phase, I might conduct a competitive analysis, while in the explore phase, I might conduct a cultural probe with follow-up surveys. The research process is a constant cycle and integrates with the design process.

What primary research methodologies have you implemented in the past?

  • Cultrual Probes

  • A/B Evaluation

  • Surveys

  • Interviews

  • Focus Groups

  • Observation

How do you share your findings?

  • Affinitization

  • Storyboards

  • Journey Maps

  • Visualizations

What impact does user experience research have on projects?

All good designs start with a strong understanding of the user, their expectations, and their needs. User experience research establishes this foundation. Designing based on research results in products that include real user feedback, increasing their chance to be successful on the market.

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