Lean user testing with Meetup 4

One of the most memorable events from the Brooklyn Beta conference was at the Meetup offices in Manhattan. We were walked through a fascinating overview of their testing process, what worked and what didn’t.

Lean user testing illustration

As a designer with no real previous experience of user testing before I joined Netlife, I have since participated in half a dozen all-day user tests comprising 5 people each, either as observer or moderator. These tests have usually occurred towards the end of the design process.

Last year, Meetup did around 400 individual tests. That’s at least one every day on average.

Meetup’s processes and opinions on user testing:

How I think we can integrate this approach

Of course, a consultancy such as ours cannot be directly compared to a product company such as Meetup, but I think this sort of test-often-and-imperfectly philosophy should be applied to consultants on client projects too.

Most importantly: as designers, we need to be more aware of time lost from asking ourselves if a concept will work or not – just get it tested.

Meetup lean testing principles

Makeshift mobile camera

Meetup’s “$30” mobile test setup

Meetup <3 UX testing


BoingBoing also blogged about Meetup’s testing philosophy in 2008