It’s hard to ask questions that don’t suck when you’re running a study, so the best advice is “don’t do it.” But you are going to anyway, so make sure your questions are grounded in what the user has done, not what you want them to do.
Even with a good content management system it can be hard to re-arrange stuff after you’ve gone live. Take the time to test out your proposed navigation with a reverse card sort to quickly iterate to a working model.
User research is a lean-forward activity: you have to remain actively engaged. It’s very different from watching TV: a lean-back, passive activity.
Don’t be shy – run studies of your competitors’ products to learn how well their software supports users’ tasks.
Spend just one week to get the information you need to build your product right first time. Use these techniques to plan your sprints or even to work out what product to bring to market.
Design validation is not a phase, it’s a continuous part of the process. Testing your designs tests your assumptions and lets you make quick course corrections.
To improve how people use your product, watch the tasks they perform. To get people to love your product, find and fix the small annoyances.