Nailing the user experience when developing a product can mean the difference between a successful launch and one which is plagued with problems that need lots of follow-up fixes to remedy. Harnessing user experience research is the best way to avoid common pitfalls during the development process and achieve tangibly better outcomes as a result, so here is a closer look at why thorough UX testing is so important. In this article, we’ll explore, explain and share the value and importance of UX research in the product development process so you can have a successful launch.
Importance of UX Research
Customer-led decision making
Product ideas which sound good in theory can fail in practice if the product seeks to solve an issue that does not actually exist, or caters to an audience that is itself a fabrication. Making use of UX research as early in development as possible will help to prove whether or not the product serves a valid purpose, addresses the problems that prospective customers might want to overcome and satisfies the other criteria that a target group wants to see met.
The results of UX research will give you actionable data that can shape the decisions you make going forwards, rather than requiring you to rely solely on guesswork or intuition, both of which can lead you down a dead end.
Importance of UX research: Pre-emptive troubleshooting
If you skip UX testing and rush a product to market to meet a tight deadline. You are playing a dangerous game that is likely to come back to bite you. When providing after-sales support becomes necessary. It is impossible to predict how customers might use a product without giving them firsthand experience of it. So, if this occurs post-launch, all sorts of flaws that you have overlooked will come to light at a time. When you are most exposed to negative coverage.
There are lots of examples of products that arrived with much fanfare only to flop because of unforeseen issues. Nipping any potential backlash in the bud long before it can blossom is a breeze. With a proactive approach to UX research.
Product development can be a drawn-out process, and delays are common, so it makes sense to find efficiencies wherever possible in order to streamline proceedings. Prototyping is a core aspect that can be optimized in this respect with the assistance of UX research. Participants from target demographics can deliver feedback on early iterations. That is then used to inform changes made to subsequent prototypes, all with minimal delay.
This feedback can also aid in breaking deadlocks that may exist, for example. So, if certain members of the development team are keeping a particular feature. Function or design element that ultimately proves to be superfluous. If costs are a concern, aiming for efficiency will be even more essential.
Product development is often an ongoing process (especially if it is a SaaS product), which extends beyond the launch and encompasses future upgrades and revisions to the product in question. Once again, UX research can be the cornerstone of your development strategy from day one. So, ensuring that if you decide to change a product. You do so in a way that actually appeals to customers. Rather than compromising their experience.