When developing a product, research is necessary. Ideally, you should do substantial product research before even beginning the development process. User interviews are a key part of that research.
With user interviews, one of the biggest factors to success is coming up with the right questions to ask. Undoubtedly, this is one area that new researchers may find particularly challenging. In general, there are five types of questions you need to think about.
The first type of question for your participants that you need is for discovery. These inquiries are the ones that look at the background of the problem, what a user likes or dislikes and issues that users are trying to solve with products. Basically, you want to gather an initial understanding of who your participants are and what kinds of problems they are trying to overcome. Then, you can have a better idea of how to possibly help them.
- Gathering User Behavior
Questions about user behavior are also important. The way that people behave can ultimately tell people a lot about the types of decisions they make and the underlying motivations behind them. They can also highlight information gaps. For example, asking someone what the most important tasks they need the product for can offer valuable insights. Additionally, find out how they navigate the product and if they know how to contact someone with questions about it.
- Past and Future Use
Next, you need to ask user research interview questions about past and future use. For example, what would make someone stop using the product? Why did someone start using it in the beginning? Did his or her experiences with use change over time? In addition, find out what participants’ think the most important features are or what people’s most memorable interactions with the product are.
- Task-Specific Questions
Task-specific questions are also helpful. When you ask individuals to show you how to do a specific task while using your product, it can offer insights that you may otherwise never think of. Additionally, you can also ask users to guide you on how to use the product if you did not know and had to use it on your own in the future.
- Remember Follow-Up Questions
The last type of question that you need to remember is follow-up questions. Although it may seem like your discussion guide is all you need to ask, keep in mind that following up with, “Can you explain that a bit more?” or “What do you mean by…?” can drastically increase mutually understanding during a conversation. Consider also employing the Five Whys Technique for generating thoughtful follow-up ideas.
At the end of the day, good questions can lead to improved product functionality and overall customer satisfaction. When you are writing your list of these types of inquiries, remember to keep your questions as clear and concise as possible. Moreover, get feedback from your research team. When it comes to interviews, there should be a collaborative approach so that the results turn out as well-rounded as possible.