By Melanie Brewer & AJ Davis
A version of this article I wrote previously appeared at sitleo.com, where my colleagues and I developed this ultra-low cost method for remote unmoderated user testing.
Have you ever tried to use Lookback.io for unmoderated research? If so, you'll know that it can be tricky because they don’t have any built-in task capabilities, and many participants aren’t familiar with the tool.
So what can you do?
Here’s Metricrux’s guide to making Lookback.io work better for you (and your participants), and at a fraction of the cost of other remote unmoderated testing platforms.
We’ve used these tactics to do remote unmoderated user testing at a ridiculously low cost -- just the monthly subscription fee for Lookback (as low as $59 per month at the time of this post) for unlimited number of tests. Paired with the low-cost options for recruiting and compensating participants through platforms like respondent.io and userinterviews.com, we’re able to make user research affordable for more companies.
(1) Add a Lookback.io question to your screener
Most participants are willing to install an extension to participate in remote research. We’ve found that adding a screener question gets participants comfortable by giving them a heads up before they’re invited to participate.
Here’s a question we’ve used:
(2) Provide clear information in the invitation email
Our invitation to the participant is usually the first time we share details on the platform we’re using for unmoderated research.
This is the chance to set participants’ expectations for the test and make your own expectations clear. The email needs to cover things such as:
each step they’ll need to do to get set up
remind them to find a quiet spot
remind them to think aloud--and explain what “think aloud” is
The users you’ll be recruiting likely won’t have gone through any instructions on how to be a “good” participant, so you’ll need to cover the basics on what you expect from them.
Here’s an example of an email/message we use:
Note: the “Participate” link in this email is obtained when you select “Invite Participants to Self-Test” within the Lookback app. You can make a copy of the email message we use here: https://goo.gl/Yv9nJ6. You can also use the examples Lookback.io provides for mobile and desktop.
(3) Set a Google Forms survey as your landing page in Lookback.io
When setting up a new project in Lookback, you’ll be asked to set a landing page. This is where you point users to a Google Form that will walk them through your test.
(4) Set up tasks in your Google Form
You’ll need to provide your participants with tasks. This is set up in the Google Form you are using as your landing page in Lookback.io (see above).
The key is to have participants click “Task Completed” -- make sure this is a *required* question -- and then move to the next task (a new section of the form) so as not to reveal the full test all at once.
Start off by setting some expectations for how the test will work, and including a scenario if you wish:
(5) Provide links and further instructions as a series of standalone tasks
This is how you point users to the actual site or prototype you are testing and tell them what you want them to do.
(6) Remind participants frequently to think aloud and respond to the product during the test
We’ve found that it’s key to frequently remind participants to think aloud and to provide frequent links to the pages they are supposed to be viewing (or remind them to keep a tab open of the site they are testing) so that you can record them interacting with your product, website or prototype, not just talking at the Google Form.
(7) Conclude with a “Confirmation message” task
It’s also important to close out the session with a strong “confirmation message” which can be set in the Google Form settings. This should remind the participant to stop the recording and upload their video.
Add this text in the Google Form Settings > Presentation > Confirmation Message