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5 Best Tools for User Testing & Co-creation in 2023
It has been proven that customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable than others. Additionally, in today's interconnected and fast-paced world, collaboration has become the cornerstone of innovation and problem-solving. Read on to find out what some of the best user testing tools in 2023 are. Most importantly, tools that help you get towards co-creation with users, beyond just testing.
Co-creation, the process of jointly creating a product with customers, has gained significant traction across startups and enterprises alike. By bringing a customer's perspective right into the build cycle, product teams can gain diverse perspectives, increase creativity, validate assumptions all while improving outcomes.
While co-creation is not new, only the largest, well-budgeted companies have had the privilege to run such programs, including IKEA, LEGO, and BMW. In this piece, we will explore the best tools suitable for any team to co-create with their customers.
For teams who have a strong and engaged community of users who are readily available to provide feedback, Mural is an excellent tool that enables a team to invite a customer to collaborate visually, regardless of their geographical location. With an array of templates, sticky notes, and drawing tools, Mural facilitates brainstorming, ideation, and concept development. Teams can create virtual whiteboards, organize ideas, and collaborate in real-time, fostering creativity and driving innovation.
Mural is available for free with premium subscription tiers. However, while it is great for its collaboration features, teams will have to find and leverage their own conferencing, transcription, and messaging tools to interact with users during a live session and transcribe the recording afterwards to extract insight. Teams will also have to recruit their own users to join these live conversations.
For teams that want greater flexibility on the ability to leverage their own users or recruit from a panel, Maze can be a great option. Maze allows teams to design full customer journeys right on the platform and invite users to provide input and give feedback. Teams can create multiple tests in real-time and view responses from users depending on the plan that they are on, though teams can get started for free. sIn addition, Maze also has integrations with design platforms such as Adobe XD, Figma, InVision, Marvel, and Sketch to help designers work seamlessly at each stage in their product lifecycle.
Once tests are complete teams can analyze their results through several methods including A/B testing, guerilla testing, heatmaps, path analysis, and task analysis. A drawback to Maze is that while there is a Free plan, teams will eventually have to pay to access all the insights desired.
Lightster is a co-creation platform that puts you directly in such with potential users that match your target audiences or customer segments. On Lightster, you can find potential users for your product using criteria such as demographics, occupation data, and custom screening questions and instantly connect with them in just a few minutes. Unlike other tools, Lightster enables co-creation by allowing teams to connect with these potential users without needing to create a research project.
Teams view detailed user profiles and connect with them through messaging and audio/video conversations (includes screen-sharing and voice transcriptions). This means insights and collaborate can happen more organically due to the increased flexibility to immediately connect with users. Teams can use Lightster to pull a user into a team discussion, or to ask users a quick question about a feature that they're currently working on.
Teams can start using Lightster for 3 conversations a month for free, and just $50 for unlimited conversations with users.
Optimal Workshop offers a suite of tools focused on different aspects of user research that can be leveraged continuously throughout the develop cycle. These tools include Treejack for information architecture testing, OptimalSort for card sorting exercises, Chalkmark for first-click testing, and more. These tools provide valuable data to inform the design process, ensuring that websites and applications are intuitive and user-friendly.
Like other tools, teams will need to recruit their own users and also create projects in order to leverage the tool in the most effective way possible.
Lookback is a user research platform focused on remote usability testing and user interviews. It allows teams to conduct moderated or unmoderated remote sessions, record user interactions, and capture participant reactions through audio and video.
Lookback also provides features for note-taking and collaboration, making it easier to analyze and share research findings within teams.
Co-creation has become a vital ingredient for innovation and success in today's dynamic business landscape. The tools mentioned above serve as powerful catalysts, enabling teams to collaborate, generate ideas, and co-create with ease. From visual collaboration platforms like Mural and Miro to communication hubs like Slack and Microsoft Teams, these tools provide the foundation for seamless co-creation experiences. By harnessing the power of these tools, teams and organizations can unlock their collective potential, foster creativity, and drive innovation forward. Embrace the power of co-creation and watch as your ideas come to life in ways you never thought possible.