Recruit & Test
Recruit users to test and capture the analytics.
At this point in the process you should have a question you want to answer, and some sort of website or application that enables users to interact with it in a way that answers your question.
Now you need a way to recruit and run your test. In a traditional UX environment this would happen one of two ways: Either your company owns the website you’re testing and you can get analytics (which usually opens an entirely different can of worms managed by a separate department), or you work with a recruiter to get users which is usually expensive. We used a service that let us recruit a large amount of users for very little money. It’s called Amazon Mechanical Turk.
Mechanical Turk, or mTurk as it’s usually called, is a service that lets you conscript people all over the world to complete small digital tasks for small amounts of money. It’s traditionally used in the survey and research world. Fill out a couple surveys and you could earn some beer money. We decided mTurk was a perfect fit for the type of testing we wanted to do.
We planned to use mTurk to recruit people to our testing site and pay them a small amount of money to complete the survey, which usually looks something like this:
Analytics track how users interact with the forms, and a database captures their inputs so we have demographic information about our sample. After running a few tests, we feel comfortable saying that the mTurk demographic is nearly always the same. If this kind of user isn’t really the kind of person you’d like to test with, it may be a dealbreaker, but in our case, it worked perfectly. Once we ran the tests using mTurk, all that was left to do was analyze the results.