Usability Testing with limited access to user data


#1

Hi there!
I work for a company that produces marketing material to the Real Estate and New Construction industry.
To get the most out of the content we produce, we also provide a number of web apps, aimed to our clients home buyers.

In other words, the apps we develop are offered as plug-and-play solutions to different Realtors, who then promote the apps on their websites.

This makes for some interesting challanges for our team - we do not have direct access to the users of our products. While we can get data via Google Analytics and such, there’s no way our clients would hand out data about their users, which is ultimately the people we want to target in Usability Testing.

To add upon the challange, we are located in a different continent, as we are located in Asia, our clients in Europe.

I find it difficult to build personas and recruit test users.
Does anyone have any recommendations on how to go about Usability Testing in this case?


#2

Hi Alfa ,

1st step is to have a good working knowledge of user testing .
Join the Interaction Design Foundation (IDF) in Copenhagen and enrol for “Conducting userability testing” Apart from a membership fee all the courses are free .

I am on the Board of the Institute for Real Estate agents in South Africa and we deal with vast interest from a global community so I really do understand your issue.
What we have done locally is to sell UX to agencies and agents letting them know , rightfully so , that good UX will increase profit margin and in doing so we got buy-in.
In real estate literally everyone is a client and every agency a service provider so you can use what you have around you and focus on what you define as your “average user” .
Your other dilemma is that you need to understand a market that your are physically removed from so my suggestion is to find a real estate consultant that can advise or guide you as the markets and profiles for Asia & Europe are vastly different .
You’re welcome to contact me on dereck@swapmobile.co.za for some direct advice as a major part of what I do entails research on global investment models for real estate investment .

Good luck
Dereck