Usability Testing Vs. Solicited User Feedback for Web Sites/Apps
11 Aug 2010 - 12:49pm
3 years ago
The topic of soliciting mass user feedback regarding the usability of web sites and applications continues to pop up for me. Primary stakeholders ask the question, "Why don't we just send a link to a survey in our newsletter to all our registered users?" or, "Let's add a feedback link or a thumbs up/down clicker to our new beta releases."
My question is whether this type of polling is valuable or if the information and the sample population is just too broad and unreliable. The cost to review the answers and organize the data doesn't seem extremely high especially if using a survey application. My general opinion is that most of the usability items can be found by testing a very small number of users and the largest issues are already well known by most people that touch the product, especially client account managers.
We already have a program for soliciting product feedback at the support level. I'd welcome any feedback about the value of soliciting usability information from the general user population directly on new pages and functions of the site.