10 testing tools to help boost your UX, on a budget

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Once your website is live, it's important to test usability in order to strengthen landing pages and boost action on your site. Katy Cowan's list of usability testing tools includes Crazy Egg, UserFeel and Peek.

You've got your website up and running. You've played around with it until you can't see straight. Now it's time to stop making assumptions on whether it's working, and make use of some of the best available usability testing tools.

We've teamed up with Squarespace to put together a range of helpful advice on creating a successful website. We've looked at why you need to get online and considered the things you need to remember when pulling together content.

Now let's examine the tools that will strengthen your landing pages, encourage people to stick around and take action. Because the more you optimise what's there, the more chance you'll have of winning customers.

And if you're worried that you're not a UX designer or usability expert, scrap that thought! Even the smallest change in text can make a huge difference, and why wouldn't anyone want to make their website as successful as possible? What's more, the following suggestions won't break the bank, and will offer valuable insight into what's working and what isn't.

1. Crazy Egg

What's making your visitors leave? That's the question posed by Crazy Egg – a fantastic resource that helps you discover how users click and scroll through your website. With helpful 'heat maps' and 'scroll' reports – you'll soon understand where you need to make improvements. Try the 30-day free trial, and stay a member if you can afford the inexpensive monthly fee.

2. Five Second Test

Optimise the clarity of your website by measuring people's first impressions – that's what the Five Second Test offers with its simple usability quiz. You submit your website design, and then Five Second Test shows it to people for five seconds. When the time is up, those participants will be asked questions about what they remembered. A fantastic free tool for discovering if your website is immediately working. And if you want access to more features, the ProPlan costs just $99 per month with no contract.

3. Usabilla

Usabilla eliminates the guesswork and allows you to optimise your website with live user feedback. You can find out why people are leaving your site through 'exit surveys'. Or you can get feedback through emails. Pricing starts from $49 per month.

4. Optimizely

Need to check if something is working? Or perhaps test two versions of your home page's headline and see which gets the most clicks? This is where A/B testing becomes your new best friend. Optimizely allows you to track visits and conversions with mobile testing, cross-browser testing, visitor segmentation and geo-targeting. You can trial Optimizely for free for 30 days. After that, you have to contact their sales team to request pricing.

5. UserFeel

Unleash your website's potential with remote usability testing, and get results in less than 24 hours. That's the exciting promise from UserFeel, a remote usability testing resource that allows you to set scenarios and tasks for anonymous participants to test. And you can then watch videos of testers using your website, so you can discover which parts need immediate improvement and increase your ROI. An affordable $49 per user test.

6. Qualaroo

Qualaroo allows you to ask your visitors targeted questions in real-time, helping you to perfect your website's usability. So you might question whether people found what they were looking for. Or perhaps understand how they heard about you. Not the cheapest option at a minimum of $199 per month, but you can enjoy a free trial and see if Qualaroo would also benefit your clients – that is, if you work in web design or marketing.

7. User Input

Want to know why you're losing customers? Of course you do. User Input gives you actionable feedback from 10 or more real humans in your target market, so you can fix the problems and grow your business. Starting at $39 you can uncover the hidden conversion killers in your website. Pricing starts from $39 for the lowest package.

8. Peek

Get a peek into the mind of your users with, you guessed it, Peek – a user testing tool that lets you see and hear a five minute video of a real person using your website. It's super fast, and totally free!

9. Inspectlet

Google Analytics tells you what, Inspectlet tells you why. Or at least, that's what this tool claims, stating that you can "stop guessing what your visitors want". The app records videos of your visitors as they use your website, allowing you to see everything they do. See every mouse movement, scroll, click and keypress – you'll never need to wonder how people are using your site again. What's more, the basic plan is completely free, then pricing starts from just $39 per month to access more features.

10. TryMyUI

How can you optimise your website? Watch videos of real people using your site and find out how to make improvements with TryMyUI. Similar to UserFeel, this little beauty allows you to set up a specific test, pick a target user and watch a video of them interacting with your website. Based on your findings, you can then take action and ensure your website is as effective as possible. How much does it cost? On the 'Personal' plan, it's free and you pay-per-test at $35 each time. Not bad for what you get in return.

As a final point, Squarespace has its own in-built Analytics which help you track upticks and traffic to certain pages on your website. It will even show 'abandoned cart' page views and other such insights that can help you improve what's there. Not yet sorted a website? Check out Squarespace, but remember to use the CREATIVEBOOM code, and you'll get a 10% discount when you sign up.

Courtesy of CreativeBoom