Why User Interviews Fail

From Nielson Norman Group: https://www.nngroup.com/articles/why-user-interviews-fail/

Summary: User interviews are often used for the wrong purpose, they’re not planned or analyzed properly, and stakeholders don’t see the value in doing them.

User interviews are an important generative method for UX. Generative methods (like interviews and focus groups) produce knowledge. In contrast, evaluative methods (like a usability test of a draft design) test hypotheses. When interviews are done well, we learn about our users’:

This knowledge helps us to build good products and services and address real user needs rather than imaginary ones . Taking the time to speak to people who might use your product or service (before you start designing) can teach you things you might otherwise never uncover, even if you run regular usability tests.

However, when done poorly, interviews lead to bad design decisions that can ultimately hurt the organization and its customers. As we have said many times, a great user interface built with the wrong features will fail. This article outlines four common issues with user interviews, along with strategies for avoiding them.

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