Recently, Testpoint carried out a series of remote interviews in order to test a website. It was an e-commerce website for a large-scale retail chain and the goal was to verify how clear the website was, how intuitive to surf, how complete and comprehensive in offering products, how easy to use in the payments section. Do you want to know how it went? We tell you step by step.

The remote IDI

Remote interviews are nothing more than in depth interviews carried out via the internet: the participant connects with the moderator using one of the various platforms that allow screen sharing so that they can see images, documents, videos or any type of stimulithey are required to analyse.

The research we are talking about today was particular as the participant was invited to try browsing the website of a large-scale retail chain that is aiming to develop e-commerce.

The moderator had to share the screen with the respondent and then let them control it. The respondent could thus freely browse the website and test all its features.

The first phase of the research consisted, as always, in recruiting people who make their purchases of various kinds on e-commerce websites with different frequency. Then, once the time for the interview was agreed, the moderator and the respondent connected to the platform to start the meeting that lasted about one hour. The moderator observed how respondentsbrowsed on the website, if they had difficulty surfing or if, on the contrary, it was easy and intuitive, if they could easily find the products theywere interested in and put them in the cart, if finally the phase of credit card payment went smoothly.

It was definitely a usability test carried out via web.

How the test went

Let’s ask one of the participants to tell us about his experience. This is Mirko, 45y.o., from Milan:

“In recent years, I have been making my purchases online more and more often: from plane or train tickets, to hotel reservations, from concert or event tickets to books, from technological material to clothing. For some time now, I have also begun to carry out weekly shopping via the web, which is extremely convenient for a single like me. So I am quite familiar with these e-commerce websites by now. This is why I accepted with great pleasure to participate in this test.

I started by connecting with the moderator via one of the well-known video conferencing platforms, then the moderator left me in control of the situation and just observed me while browsing and then asked me some questions.

It seemed very interesting to me to be able to simulate the use of the website while someone observed my behavior to understand what could be the difficulties that those who surf could encounter, if it was easy to search for the desired product, put it in the cart, then move on to the search for a new product and so on. I also simulated the phase of payment by credit card, so the online purchase was followed and examined in all its phases, from start to finish. I can say that it was a really interesting experience: I did not imagine that there could be so much work behind the preparation of a website for online sales. I can say that time has flown and I spent an hour without even realizing it”.