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Oct 25, 2016

User Experience at Lumosity: Testing Tuesdays

User feedback has always been a crucial element in developing new games and features at Lumosity, but until last year our process for gathering user feedback was often on an ad hoc basis or focused on later stage concepts. Last October, though, our User Experience team introduced an internal service to formalize our approach to gathering and understanding user feedback through every stage of development: Testing Tuesdays.

Every Tuesday, a small group of carefully selected Lumosity users — or, in some cases, people completely new to Lumosity — visits our San Francisco office to try out and provide feedback on new games and feature ideas that we’re currently exploring. Each week we try to have something new to show these users, and after each session, we take what we’ve learned, share it with our teammates, and incorporate the feedback to improve these new concepts.

During Testing Tuesdays, users help us answer questions like: Is this game easy to understand? Are the levels at the right level of difficulty? Is it clear how to use this feature? And, perhaps most importantly, do people even want this? Why or why not?

Testing Tuesdays have become an integral part of the way we vet new ideas and design new features. Although our team has great intuition, we know it’s possible to be “too close” to a new game or feature: the users who join us on Tuesdays help check our biases and challenge our assumptions. We’ve found that Testing Tuesdays are instrumental in quickly gauging user interest so we can work efficiently and meaningfully to either throw out ideas that aren’t resonating with people or improve concepts that people do like.

As one of our Product Managers says, “I wouldn’t do much user testing if Testing Tuesdays didn’t happen. And it winds up having a huge influence on where we go with products — it transforms speculation into empirical data, which carries a lot of weight around here.”

While we weren’t exactly doing guesswork before, Testing Tuesdays have provided a streamlined way for our teams to incorporate user feedback early on and to focus their energies on designing solutions that meet our users’ needs, rather than solutions that we think meet our users’ needs.

As our Testing Tuesday program has grown, we’ve been looking for ways to build on its success: more opportunities for users to visit, better ways to share information internally, and so on!

If you live in the Bay Area and are interested in coming into our office for a future Testing Tuesday visit, please reach out to user.research@lumoslabs.com.

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