Usability Testing


Usability testing is a technique for ensuring that the intended users of a system can interface easily with it and carry out the intended tasks efficiently, effectively and satisfactorily on the proto-types being tested; whether it be a website, software application, product or a system. It is ideal when you are looking to gather rich qualitative feedback from your customers and learn about the navigation, branding, functionality, value proposition and content of a product offering.


It’s ideal to test at multiple stages of a project's development after incorporating inputs from the previous stage of research to keep it on the right track.




A usability test will help your organization…


  • Learn whether your users understand the product proposition itself
  • Pinpoint specific areas (e.g. navigation, content, functionality) that require modifications
  • Gain an understanding of shifts in customer perceptions, buying habits and attitudes regarding your brand
  • Feel empowered during the decision making process regarding the next phase of development
  • Save development time and avoid the expense of major post-launch revisions
  • Uncover critical glitches that might cause product failure
  • Minimize the risk of launching a product that does not adequately address user needs.


    ‘Eyes on screen’ method



    ‘Eyes on screen’ or eye tracking is a type of usability testing. Here with the help of an eye tracker the participants’ pupils and their position on a screen are tracked and thus provide detailed data about the participants’ visual attention on user interface elements.


    Eye tracking measurements are made unobtrusively via a video camera. It is discretely integrated into a monitor, providing a more natural user environment. Modern eye tracking systems allow live-viewing of the eye-movements of an object. The moderator/observer can watch the gaze of the participant, in combination with the screen, the participant looks at.


    The series of fixations (of the eye on screen) is called a scan path. These are useful in providing a snapshot image of attention during a test. ‘Hot spot maps’ show aggregate eye fixations and viewing of a screen. It summarizes the gaze positions received from multiple sessions and participants, and creates a hotspot map based on this data. The ‘area of interest analysis’ allows to define areas within a page/screen and to compare eye tracking data for those areas, e.g. number of fixations, fixation duration, etc



    Certain types of questions about usability/likability etc. are difficult to answer

    efficiently via traditional techniques. Eye Tracking allows to observe thought processes not recognised by the user and consequently are not vocalised, giving even deeper insights into users. The results are objective, unbiased and quantifiable.




    Scenarios which rely heavily on non verbal responses in usability/ likability/appeal/ comprehension tests of TV series, websites, etc make use of this technique.


    We should not use eye tracking data alone, but in conjunction with careful observation of participant behaviour and discussion.