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User Research: A Practical Guide to Designing Better Products and Services

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Many businesses are based on creating desirable experiences, products and services for users. However in spite of this, companies often fail to consider the end user - the customer - in their planning and development processes. As a result, organizations find themselves spending huge sums of money creating products and services that, quite simply, don't work. User experien Many businesses are based on creating desirable experiences, products and services for users. However in spite of this, companies often fail to consider the end user - the customer - in their planning and development processes. As a result, organizations find themselves spending huge sums of money creating products and services that, quite simply, don't work. User experience research, also known as UX research, focuses on understanding user behaviours, needs and motivations through a range of observational techniques, task analysis and other methodologies. User Research is a practical guide that shows readers how to use the vast array of user research methods available. Covering all the key research methods including face-to-face user testing, card sorting, surveys, A/B testing and many more, the book gives expert insight into the nuances, advantages and disadvantages of each, while also providing guidance on how to interpret, analyze and share the data once it has been obtained. Ultimately, User Research is about putting natural powers of observation and conversation to use in a specific way. The book isn't bogged down with small, specific, technical detail - rather, it explores the fundamentals of user research, which remain true regardless of the context in which they are applied. As such, the tools and frameworks given here can be used in any sector or industry, to improve any part of the customer journey and experience; whether that means improving software, websites, customer services, products, packaging or more.


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Many businesses are based on creating desirable experiences, products and services for users. However in spite of this, companies often fail to consider the end user - the customer - in their planning and development processes. As a result, organizations find themselves spending huge sums of money creating products and services that, quite simply, don't work. User experien Many businesses are based on creating desirable experiences, products and services for users. However in spite of this, companies often fail to consider the end user - the customer - in their planning and development processes. As a result, organizations find themselves spending huge sums of money creating products and services that, quite simply, don't work. User experience research, also known as UX research, focuses on understanding user behaviours, needs and motivations through a range of observational techniques, task analysis and other methodologies. User Research is a practical guide that shows readers how to use the vast array of user research methods available. Covering all the key research methods including face-to-face user testing, card sorting, surveys, A/B testing and many more, the book gives expert insight into the nuances, advantages and disadvantages of each, while also providing guidance on how to interpret, analyze and share the data once it has been obtained. Ultimately, User Research is about putting natural powers of observation and conversation to use in a specific way. The book isn't bogged down with small, specific, technical detail - rather, it explores the fundamentals of user research, which remain true regardless of the context in which they are applied. As such, the tools and frameworks given here can be used in any sector or industry, to improve any part of the customer journey and experience; whether that means improving software, websites, customer services, products, packaging or more.

30 review for User Research: A Practical Guide to Designing Better Products and Services

  1. 5 out of 5

    Pritesh Pawar

    Being into the field of Research and Analysis, this book enlightened me in several ways. Most important thing is that the clearer your reasons are for doing user research, the more effective it will be. Here are my few takeaways: 1] We need to clearly identify the goals and framework of the research to help everyone involved avoid increasing the scope of the work. 2] This book tells that framing the problem will help you understand the issue in its totality. 3] To ensure strong results, don’t ask t Being into the field of Research and Analysis, this book enlightened me in several ways. Most important thing is that the clearer your reasons are for doing user research, the more effective it will be. Here are my few takeaways: 1] We need to clearly identify the goals and framework of the research to help everyone involved avoid increasing the scope of the work. 2] This book tells that framing the problem will help you understand the issue in its totality. 3] To ensure strong results, don’t ask too many questions at once. 4] Don’t combine different research goals on the same project. 5] Also be certain that the timing of your research will provide the greatest impact for your project. 6] Leave sufficient time to analyze and present your findings. I could recall these important points for now. There are any minute points as well. Conclusion: There’s no one way to do user research. The key is choosing the methodology that suits your company’s needs and resources.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Darren

    “You can never have enough research” is a reasonably good mantra to have in business, although of course it should be viewed as a guide. Sometimes you do have to trust your feeling, but research can also help guide your senses and stop often costly mistakes being made. This is, therefore, a very timely accessible book that sets out to guide the reader to design better products and services through the use of user research. In other words, design what your customers may be wanting (if they know it “You can never have enough research” is a reasonably good mantra to have in business, although of course it should be viewed as a guide. Sometimes you do have to trust your feeling, but research can also help guide your senses and stop often costly mistakes being made. This is, therefore, a very timely accessible book that sets out to guide the reader to design better products and services through the use of user research. In other words, design what your customers may be wanting (if they know it or not), in the form they will best use. You seek to get this elixir of business magic through research, user research. It is not necessarily an easy task, and you can get a lot of rubbish back. Part of the skill (and luck) is sorting the wheat from the chaff. It is more than just sending out a questionnaire with the offer of a gift card – people do not always diligently and honestly fill them in, speed being more important and the chance of winning than accuracy. Take a shortcut and prepare to crash. Instead, the whole field of user research (UX as it is often shortened to) is at your fingertips, looking at issues such as user behaviour, user needs, motivation and more, pulling in a host of different scientific approaches such as observation research, task analysis, psychology and more. Even then, assuming you get everything right, you still have to develop a working product or service, on time and budget, and get it out to the marketplace and persuade the customers to bite. This book cannot do everything, but it can help you positively along the way, and with that it does a good job, showing practically how all this research, testing, analysis and more can work and benefit. The hard parts of doing the research, analysing it and reacting to it falls upon you and your colleagues. Experience shows that not everybody welcomes the research’s findings when toes are trodden on, and balloons popped… nerves of steel and a thick skin may be necessary to steer the project forward. This is an excellent book, seeking to carve out a niche in a quite crowded marketplace: there is no shortage of books covering topics related to this subject, but upon reflection, it does an outstanding job at introducing, consolidating, enthusing and guiding the reader. For those who want to, or need to, dig deeper, this book has served well as the ‘rubber ring of user research’. That said, for some readers and some applications this may be enough to get you going, some of it may depend on whether you form a connection with the book and its style or not – for some, it won’t work, through no specific fault of the book. In many ways, this could also be a book of use for academics, since research is an essential part of academic work and many of the academic research books are far from being accessible and engaging. Certainly, it seems that the author has done a good job in lifting the curtain to various research-related subjects and let the light in a little. When you consider the book’s reasonable price tag too, it is a steal! It is definitely worth closer consideration. If you have not considered user research before, or have yet to be persuaded, then this can be a great must-buy. For others, perhaps who believe they are more experienced in this field, the book still can give the odd bit of advice, perspective and, of course, maybe validate what you are doing along the way.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Synthia Salomon

    “There’s no one way to do user research. The key is choosing the methodology that suits your company’s needs and resources. Some approaches like interviews are cheap but take time. Others, like surveys, are more expensive but quicker and simpler. So, clarify what you’re looking for before you start your research. If you want in-depth qualitative data, be prepared to conduct extensive, in-person interviews. If you want a large sample of more general data, a survey might be the best way to go.  Act “There’s no one way to do user research. The key is choosing the methodology that suits your company’s needs and resources. Some approaches like interviews are cheap but take time. Others, like surveys, are more expensive but quicker and simpler. So, clarify what you’re looking for before you start your research. If you want in-depth qualitative data, be prepared to conduct extensive, in-person interviews. If you want a large sample of more general data, a survey might be the best way to go.  Actionable advice: Need a quick fix? Try guerilla research. You can carry out effective user research even if you’re short on resources and time. Call it guerilla research – a highly mobile, low-resource way of finding out what people think of your product or service. Simply approach random people in public spaces, like cafés, and ask them to test your wares. It’s the perfect method if you’re still working on a prototype and need some first impressions. It’s also a great way of practicing your interview and communication skills. “

  4. 4 out of 5

    Joe Buckingham

  5. 5 out of 5

    Liz Hamburger

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ist

  7. 4 out of 5

    Derrek Li

  8. 5 out of 5

    Chutika Udomsinn

  9. 4 out of 5

    Momo

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mitchell Wakefield

  11. 4 out of 5

    Nursultan Barun

  12. 4 out of 5

    Stephen

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ana Piechocinska

  14. 4 out of 5

    Bernard Dixon

  15. 5 out of 5

    Justine

  16. 4 out of 5

    Filipa

  17. 5 out of 5

    Johanna

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sofia

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sojharo Mangi

  20. 5 out of 5

    Aldo Biagini

  21. 4 out of 5

    Oreoluwa Oduwole

  22. 5 out of 5

    Becca Sadwick

  23. 4 out of 5

    Michael Mary Andrews

  24. 5 out of 5

    Federico Marchisio

  25. 4 out of 5

    Waddilove Chiwororo

  26. 4 out of 5

    Books Galore

  27. 4 out of 5

    Akshay

  28. 4 out of 5

    Joel Tefft

  29. 5 out of 5

    David Hoffman

  30. 5 out of 5

    Tim Keller

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