Usability Testing

No one ever got fired for buying IBM

September 13, 2016

Remember the adage “No one ever got fired for buying IBM”? While that may be true, it did not mean IBM knew what they were doing – look at them now! We have worked alongside dozens of website developers over the years including a number of big household names. They all have their own preferred […]


Tell them about the drill, not the hole

September 5, 2016

I recall being taught about features & benefits in the marketing part of my MBA. We were told nobody wants a drill – they want a hole. The drill is just a means to an end, so you have to talk about the benefits of the hole not the features of the drill. However, often this does […]


Hamburgers don’t give off scent!

August 2, 2016

Like many commentators we think the increasing trend of using hamburgers at desktop screen resolutions is a triumph of bad design over good usability. Primarily because it hides the links. Hamburgers give off no scent for users’ goals, it makes them think – not a good idea – rather than just word match. This example […]


‘Fast’ & ‘Slow’ thinking

July 25, 2016

Have you come across Daniel Kahneman’s ideas about ‘Fast’ (System 1) and ‘Slow’ (System 2) thinking? The idea is that ‘Fast’ thinking, which controls most of what we do, is intuitive, automatic, experience-based, and relatively unconscious, while ‘Slow’ thinking is conscious, considered and hard work! It is argued that many market research methods (e.g. depth […]


Martha Lane Fox and a vision of a united and robust digital economy

July 6, 2016

Martha Lane Fox wrote a thoughtful (as ever) piece in The Sunday Times last weekend in which she talks about spreading “digital skills to unite the nation”. In the wake of the Brexit vote she argues for an inclusion agenda in which the 12.6 million adults in the UK with no digital skills must have […]


When usability testing goes strategic

June 27, 2016

Recently we have been working with a start-up business developing a new website. They were working on tight timescales and budgets so it was essential that the research delivered added-value: it went well beyond ‘usability testing’ and significantly informed the strategic USP and brand proposition. The client, a provider of business finance, assumed that processing […]


So you think you know what is ‘normal’

May 26, 2016

I was reading an article in the Sunday papers about middle aged men drinking too much. This was accompanied by pieces by people who drank more than 50 units per week. These were not raving alcoholics but people with good jobs and happy family lives that you might meet in the course of your professional […]


Should you take content off your website?

May 24, 2016

We have recently completed a number of usability testing projects for clients with large information sites i.e. non-transactional sites. These have included organisations as diverse as a major UK charity, a manufacturer of precision measuring equipment, and an EU institution. A common issue with all these sites (and many large information sites) is a lack […]


Is doing research in London skewing your results?

May 18, 2016

We estimate over 60% of UK, studio-based, qualitative market research takes place in London (*), most of which will use London-based respondents. Londoners accounts for 13% of the UK population and a key question is how representative is this 13% of the whole UK population? Most qualitative research aims to provide a snapshot of opinion […]


Remote testing – for hard to reach testers

March 18, 2015

We always recruit our own testers. By doing it ourselves we get more appropriate testers and we can weed out the ones who try to make a career out of being a respondent. We think we are quite good at this, and most of the time it is not difficult, but sometimes it can be more challenging, […]