What is UserTesting.com?
A “crowdsourcing” service that provides fast and cheap usability testing. UserTesting.com gives you access to a large panel of users, on-demand. You get to “look over the shoulder” of these users while they perform common tasks on your website, to see and hear where they get confused and frustrated. This dramatically decreases the cost and hassle of user testing.
How much does one user tester cost?
$49, which gives you two things:
- A Flash video of a user speaking their thoughts as they browse your website. Watch a sample video
- A written summary where that same user tells you what they liked, disliked, and what would have caused them to leave your site. See a sample summary
If it’s your first order, you pay only $33/user when you sign up for three users.
Do the videos record both audio and video?
Yes. Our screen recording software records both the audio of the user speaking and the video of the screen. The videos are Flash files.
How long are the videos?
Usually about 15 minutes. The length depends on how many tasks the user is asked to do. Tasks should be written so that they can be completed in not much more than 15 minutes.
Can the videos be downloaded?
Yes, you can download the videos in MPEG-4, QuickTime, or WMV formats. This allows you to:
- Edit the videos
- Insert the videos into Powerpoint
- Watch the videos offline
- Embed the videos into a web page
How quickly will I receive results?
In as little as one hour. Here’s the most common scenario: You request five usability tests—you’ll receive a couple of the results within the hour and all five within a few hours. One caveat: Requesting users with narrow demographics slows things down a bit because fewer users are qualified to do the test.
Who is UserTesting.com for?
Anyone involved in the design, development, or marketing of a website. Seeing real people use your site lets you see where they have problems and how you can make it easier to use. Many of our clients work for website design and optimization firms, and they test both client and prospect websites. It’s a very powerful pitching tool to show videos of real people using a client site (followed by how you’d improve it).
Who are the users?
The users on our panel are typical Internet users, not usability experts. They are normal people who have been screened to make sure they articulate what they are thinking as they browse. We have made a big effort to find these users and make them available to you for a low price. Learn more about our user panel.
My website is very specialized. Can you guarantee that I can get users for my specific demographic?
Currently we only ask our users for five demographics: gender, age, income, country, and web expertise. When you are writing your test, you can request additional demographics (for example, “You must be a high school teacher”). Even if you make an additional request, the test is made available to users based on the five demographics we do have. The users then self-select based on whether they match the additional requirement. (It’s rare for users to do tests that they’re not qualified for, because they don’t want to risk getting removed from our panel.) If users don’t feel they fit your additional requirement and don’t accept your test, we will contact you with the option to edit your demographics or cancel the test for a refund.
Want your actual customers to be the users? See the next question…
I want my own customers to be the users, not people on your user panel.
Wait, is that a question? Actually, we’ve made this easy to do. When you sign up for an Enterprise plan , you can use our user panel or your own customers.
How many user testers should I sign up for?
We recommend five, since some usability experts say that you’ll discover most of a site’s problems with as few as five users.
Can I test competitors’ websites?
Yes, you can test any website. In fact, you can run a test where the user looks at two different websites–such as your website and a competitors–and tells you which they prefer and why. To do this, when posting your test, just enter one of the websites in the URL field and reference the other in your task description.
Can I test a site that’s only partially done or requires a password?
Yes. When writing your test, just warn the users that the site is only partially working, or that it requires a username/password. They’ll have no problem with this.
What if I want to watch the user testers sign up using a credit card?
You have two options:
- Tell them to go through the process of buying your product with a credit card, but tell them not to click the final “SUBMIT ORDER” button.
- Provide the user testers with a dummy credit card number that they can use.
Can website owners outside the United States use UserTesting.com?
Yes, about 15% of our clients are outside the U.S.
Do you have user testers in countries besides the United States?
Yes, we now offer user panels in the United Kingdom and Canada. Want users from other countries? When you sign up, select the option to use “my own customers.” Then you can invite people from your own country to be your user testers.
I want a refund. What do I do?
If you are not 100% satisfied, just click here within one year for a full refund.
Can I pay you for website consulting?
Yes, our enterprise clients rely on our Research and Testing team to write test plans, watch and annotate videos and summarize key findings in a written report. To learn more about enterprise services, email email@example.com. Alternatively, there are usability experts and website optimization experts who will perform advanced usability services for UserTesting.com customers. Here are a few that we know best and recommend.
Will this FAQ ever end?
Well, it always has before.
I am a usability expert. Can I share test results with my clients without mentioning UserTesting.com?
Yes, our Agencies program makes it easy to set-up tests for your various clients and share results along with your comments. The results you share with your clients can have your logo (not UserTesting.com) so you can use your brand and set your pricing.
How do I apply to be a user tester?
Sign up here to be a user. If you are accepted, you’ll earn $10 for each website you test (unless the client isn’t satisfied with the results, in which case the entire $49 fee is refunded, including your $10).
You didn’t answer my question. How come?
Probably because this FAQ was written by a marketing person. Please ask us your question using our contact us form.