Product Evaluation through Interaction Design: What Are the Steps?

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Properly evaluating a product is essential when it comes to getting the results that you aim for. Otherwise, you run the risk of damaging your professional reputation.

So, you’ll need to establish a comprehensive product evaluation strategy in order to handle this obligation.

Wondering “what is interaction design?” Don’t worry — we’ve got all information that you need to know.

Let’s take a look.

Create an Evaluation Plan

As you might guess, coming up with a proper evaluation plan is the first step of interaction design that you need to take. This will serve as the framework for how you analyze the overall usability and quality of the product.

In general, you’ll focus on two primary attributes:

  • The key metrics you will evaluate
  • Managing the logistics of the evaluation itself

To elaborate on the latter point, this involves organizing test sessions for your product. This will allow you to gain valuable insight into how it functions, whether or not it meets current standards, and how users will experience it.

Depending on what you are currently developing, you may even need to conduct tests within a specific area (such as a lab.)

Regardless of how you intend to test your product, it’s essential that you plan out as many nuances as possible. This will prevent you from encountering contingencies as time goes on and allow you to stay focused.

Offer Feedback on the Product Design

Once you begin to analyze the product itself, you’ll need to offer actionable feedback.

This can occur in a handful of different settings. One of the most common is involving the product designers in observational analysis sessions.

This is a particularly useful method to take advantage of since it will give the designers a firsthand look at any issues that arise. Additionally, they’ll also learn which attributes of the product are the most viable.

Of course, it’s always possible to conduct a more conventional evaluation. This typically involves having a separate evaluation team conduct a comprehensive test of the product and then provide a written report.

From here, you can pass this information along to the appropriate parties so that any necessary changes can be made.

Determine Whether or Not Objectives Have Been Met

It should come as no surprise that this is one of the key metrics to determine. If the design objectives have been satisfied, you’ll need to document as much information as possible.

This will allow the designers to resolve outstanding issues with relative ease.

Interestingly, declaring that objectives have been met is a relatively involved process. Your team will need to communicate with the project sponsor and prove to them that your interactive media design meets all of their needs.

A designated team will present the evaluation findings to the sponsor in order to eliminate the success of the product’s design.

In order to get the best results possible, it’s essential that you have the right professionals on your team. If you’re looking to hire a user interaction designer for your product, you can check out this resource to learn more.

Analyze Current Usability

Your product may feel like it should. It may even look exactly as intended. However, is it currently usable?

Analyzing the current usability of the product is yet another key aspect of the interaction design process. In order to fully test this attribute, you’ll need at least a beta version of the product.

For example, let’s assume that your team is developing proprietary software for a real estate broker. This program is intended to streamline the data that the broker collects about its high-priority leads.

Regardless of the other attributes of the software, this stage would involve showcasing exactly how the program works. Although the product might not be finalized at this point, it should still be able to function as intended.

In this context, the program might be required to aggregate lead data and then automatically sort this information based on potential conversion.

Falling short of these goals will have a large number of consequences, ranging from delayed deadlines to project termination.

Anticipate Long-Term Concerns

More often than not, major issues with products tend to arise over time as opposed to shortly after launch. In order to minimize the complications that you experience, you need to anticipate long-term concerns.

One of the most important attributes to consider is how user behavior will change as time goes on. As people become more and more familiar with the product, they may attempt to use it in a way that was not initially intended.

If you don’t accurately predict this change in behavior, you run the risk of customers or clients becoming dissatisfied and moving on to a competitor.

Using the above software example, people may not be very efficient in navigating the software first. As their familiarity with the product grows, they may wish to utilize it more quickly.

This means you should incorporate shortcuts, advanced tools, etc. that your more experienced users are able to take advantage of.

Product Evaluation Might Seem Difficult at First

However, the above info will help ensure that your product evaluation strategy covers all the aspects that it needs to. This will allow you to provide the best possible experience for your customers.

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