Right and wrong questions
The first rule of user research: never ask anyone what they want.
User research is the basis of a good product. You have to listen carefully to people and ask the right questions. The answers to wrong questions may make you feel like you know something new. But you don’t.
Wrong questions are:
- Do you like this product?
- Would you pay for this service? How much?
- How would you make this feature differently?
- Did you find it?
- Do you think you would use this?
- Is this easy to use?
- Did you see that?
The right questions are:
- How do you currently solve this problem?
- How have you found similar products in the past?
- What happened last time you used this product?
- Can you show please?
- What would you expect to happen when you … ?
- How would this fit into your work?
- How might this change the way you do that today?
- What were you expecting?
Know the unanswerable questions. These are the questions that can’t be answered.
Always ask the right questions and listen carefully. If you didn’t learn something new from your research, you probably did something wrong.