Usability, Customer Experience & Statistics

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9 Biases That Affect Survey Responses

9 Biases That Affect Survey Responses

Jeff Sauro • September 27, 2016

Biases can be particularly pernicious because they're harder to spot than more glaring problems in surveys (like non-mutual exclusivity or double-barreled questions). In fact, there are not always clear remedies to the many biases that can affect your results. However, often just being aware of them is enough to help mitigate unwanted effects. Here are 9 common biases I've documented from the literature and our experience conducting surveys to watch out for and in some cases ideas on how to fix them.[Read More]


Pros and Cons of Requiring Survey Responses

Pros and Cons of Requiring Survey Responses

Jeff Sauro • September 19, 2016

Requiring responses increases the burden on the respondent, which in turn may lead to increased abandonment. But should required responses be avoided at all costs? The actual effect on survey completion rates is unclear and in some cases required responses may actually increase the response rate. To improve response rates, reducing the length of the survey (number of questions) will likely have a bigger effect on the response rate than the number of required responses. More research is needed to disentangle the effects of survey length and required responses to a variety of survey types. If there is one clear conclusion about required responses is that the advice that you should never have mandatory responses is overstated. Much like the notorious three clicks to content rule, there are so many exceptions that it shouldn't be added to the survey playbook. [Read More]


4 Things UX Research Tells You that Google Analytics Doesn

4 Things UX Research Tells You that Google Analytics Doesn't

Jeff Sauro • September 12, 2016

Google Analytics is an essential tool to understand some key aspects of your website traffic. But it can't tell you everything. Combining GA with UX research methods help you better understand who your users are, their intent for visiting (goals), what they think of the site (attitudes), problems being encountered, and what to fix.[Read More]


4 Principles to Help Innovate and Improve the Customer Experience

4 Principles to Help Innovate and Improve the Customer Experience

Jeff Sauro • September 6, 2016

Innovation can mean improving the customer experience or adding new features or functions to address customer needs.Innovation is more than just an epiphany moment from a solo genius. It's usually the result of much effort and more failure from many people.While no magic method can consistently deliver innovation, a few principles can help. Here are four principles (along with some links) to help spur innovation and improve the customer experience.[Read More]


Can You Change A Standardized Questionnaire?

Can You Change A Standardized Questionnaire?

Jeff Sauro • August 30, 2016

Standardized questionnaires are generally more reliable and valid than homegrown ones. Many also offer the ability to convert raw scores into percentile ranks. Sometimes you may feel a previously validated questionnaire needs a change (e.g. item wording, scale labels). But before you make changes, consider whether you are measuring more than one thing and whether the existing data you get is good enough. If you decide to make changes, test the original and new items with a set of participants and examine the correlation.[Read More]

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About Jeff Sauro

About Jeff Sauro

Jeff Sauro is the founding principal of MeasuringU, a company providing statistics and usability consulting to Fortune 1000 companies.
He is the author of over 20 journal articles and 5 books on statistics and the user-experience.
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