In the fast-paced world of product development, user research often gets a bad rap for being time-consuming and resource-intensive. But what if there are simple ways of streamlining the user research process, making it more efficient and cost-effective without sacrificing quality?
In this article, we’ll walk you through 5 practical strategies for increasing efficiency in user research, so you can still make insight-informed decisions in a fast-paced environment.
Often we see that a study is needed and jump head first into planning.
Sometimes though, we already have the data.
When you first get a research question, go through these steps first:
Recruiting often takes ages, unless you have a very responsive user base. When you’re facing a time-crunch, we may want to outsource this process or talk to look-alike customers (people who look like our users) where possible.
Solutions like UserInterviews.com, Respondent.io offer panels of people you can recruit. You can put in “screener surveys” asking people for additional information before you set up your call.
It will vary per your participants but these platforms should allow you to recruit participants within a few days.
If you must recruit your own users for a study, there are ways to bring efficiency to that too.
Not only do no-shows waste time and resources, but they also disrupt the research schedule and potentially lead to incomplete data.
Addressing the root causes of no-shows can significantly reduce their occurrence.
Meaningful Incentives: Not all audiences are created equal in terms of how they respond to incentives. Students will jump on $20 gift cards whereas a working professional may not. Calculate the perfect incentive for your user base to maximize responses. You can always adjust these for future studies as you learn more about how your users respond to a particular amount of incentive.
Despite your best efforts, no-shows may still occur. Here's how to handle them effectively:
User research often generates a wealth of data that can be overwhelming to analyze and synthesize. This is where rapid synthesis comes into play.
Rapid synthesis is a process of quickly analyzing and interpreting user research data to extract key insights and findings. It encourages researchers to gather insights quickly and share them with the team in an ongoing manner, rather than waiting for a formal report.
This approach allows for continuous feedback and iteration. It also ensures that research findings are incorporated into the product development process as early as possible.
Sometimes, the most valuable insights come from those quick, off-the-cuff discussions right after a user research session.
Quick debriefs are short, focused discussions held immediately after research sessions to gather initial impressions and key findings.
After a user research session, gather your team for a quick debrief. It's a way to capture the essence of your research while the experience is still fresh in everyone's minds.
But don't worry about remembering everything – Looppanel can be your trusty sidekick, capturing key notes for you automatically and turning them into a shareable document.
With Looppanel, you get automatic notes organized by interview questions. If something really crucial comes up, you can save that time-stamp in the moment. No more chasing after lost notes or sifting through endless spreadsheets. Everything is organized, accessible, and ready to be transformed into actionable insights.
By sharing findings as they emerge, researchers can:
You can still go back and do deeper synthesis once your calls end, but your team already has something to work with which creates less time pressure on the process moving forward.
You can optimize even a near-perfect user research process further, by eliminating unnecessary steps, leveraging technology, and establishing a repeatable framework.
Start with taking a step back, and assessing whether any unnecessary steps exist.
Consider the following questions:
You can conduct a review of the process, evaluating the significance of each step critically, and the value it adds to the research process.
Gather feedback from team members and stakeholders to identify potential inefficiencies too.
Technology can be a powerful ally in streamlining user research. By automating repetitive tasks and utilizing specialized tools, you can free up time to focus on the more strategic aspects of the research.
Here are a few examples of how tools can enhance your user research efficiency:
By implementing the five efficiency tips outlined in the article, you can significantly improve the user research process, and streamline it to save time and money.
Streamlining user research is key. Do an audit and eliminate unnecessary steps, and use tools to automate repetitive, time-consuming tasks like scheduling and transcription.
Looppanel automatically records your calls, transcribes them, and centralizes all your research data in one place