Ethnography is qualitative type of study that observes people in their natural environment to gain a deeper understanding of their daily habits and provide more context around their behaviors and actions.


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Why are ethnographic tests valuable?

Learning about your customers’ lives—where they are, what they’re doing, and how they go about completing everyday tasks—yields a cornucopia of insights that helps you design targeted experiences that meet your customers’ needs.

How do you conduct ethnographic tests?

In traditional anthropological research, ethnographic studies were conducted in-person, with researchers directly observing their test participants in their native environments. Yet even before the pandemic, digital advancements and the ubiquity of mobile devices made remote ethnographic research not only possible, but a faster, and sometimes even more reliable solution to understanding people’s daily lives. With out the influence of a researcher present, people are more likely to provide honest reactions, giving teams a clearer window into the lives of their customers.

Not sure how to get started with an ethnographic test?

Ethnographic tests can seem a bit intimidating at first, but don’t worry. UserTesting has experienced research experts who’ve created easy-to-use templates to get you started on the right foot. Try our customer environment and context template to see what you can learn about your customers through ethnographic tests.