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.
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:
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.
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.