Usertesting.com advertises itself to potential customers as being “The fastest way to watch and hear real people using your website.” This is a great benefit for those building a website for the first time, building an all new site, or even those re-designing an old site or even creating a new Facebook app can find usertesting.com valuable. But what about those real people that test the sites for UserTesting.com? Is there anything in it for them?
As a tester for User Testing, I decided to write a usertesting.com review, which was inspired by Canadian web hosting reviews to say the answer is mostly yes. UserTesting.com pays each tester $10 for every site they test. All you need is User Testing’s screen-capturing software (a very small program), a microphone for your computer (can be bought for as low as $7), and about 15 minutes of quiet time for each site. To test a site, you simply browse the contents or follow a specific set of browsing instructions given, and talk about works or doesn’t work for you as a test “consumer”. A very sweet deal considering how difficult the economy is these days, and no one can sneeze at a few easy bucks.
Don’t run out and quit your day job, though. Because User Testing has some pretty big downfalls to their setup. While they do limit the number of testers they allow to sign up, that number is still too large, and assignments are on a first come, first serve basis. So if you manage to even get the option to test a site, you must be at your computer when it becomes available or very quickly after in order to snatch it up before someone else does. They really do get claimed within moments of being posted most times. A decent month will probably yield 10 completed tests, giving you $100.
I’ve been a tester for UserTesting.com for about three months now, and my best month gave me about 21 offers, with only 10 I was able to claim and complete. January seems to be a slow month for UserTesting.com (so far), with only four offers and none I have been able to get to in time to claim. This is all not because I spend little time on the computer, either. Considering that I work full time on the internet now and I always have UserTesting.com open in the background.
User Testing opportunities are sent to the email address you use to sign up for the site, and payments are sent via PayPal 7 days after the test is completed. This 7 day window gives the site designer(s) time to review your test video and decide whether it’s acceptable. It is very rare that a client will reject your test, but you still need to be aware of the rating system available.
UserTesting.com gives clients the ability to rate your test video on a scale of 1 – 5 stars depending on how well they think you did. The factors that most often affect this rating are whether you followed all given instructions for the test, the clarity of your speech, whether you did speak, and sometimes whether you met the basic requirements before accepting a job. For example, if a site is made specifically for mothers and it states that you MUST be a mother or expectant mother to claim the job, then be sure you pay attention to that. If you are a 19 year old male and decide to claim the assignment, it will be rejected. If you’re a 32 year old female who has never been a mother and plans to never be, it might be taken, but you will receive a very low rating. The higher your rating, the more likely it is you will be offered opportunities from User Testing in the future. Be aware of this whenever you decide to accept a job.
Even with the few pitfalls of the site, UserTesting.com is a great way to make some easy spending money, and can be kind of fun once you start doing the tests. You can also check out Canadian web hosting reviews. Imagine someone genuinely paying you for your opinion with no strings attached! I would definitely recommend that everyone check the site out and see if there are openings for testers. I’ll probably see you over there!