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Are Opt-In Online Panels Too Inaccurate?

It’s hard to conduct user research without users. And current and prospective users are often people who sign up to an online panel to get paid for taking studies. But who are these people who spend time taking surveys, unmoderated usability studies, and product concept evaluations? Can we trust them? We’ve written before about the

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How to Handle Bad Data

Decisions should be driven (or at least informed) by data. Raw data is turned into information by ensuring that it is accurate and has been put into a context that promotes good decision-making. The pandemic has brought a plethora of COVID-related data dashboards, which are meant to provide information that helps the public and public

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The Evolution of the Mean Opinion Scale: From MOS-R to MOS-X2

The Mean Opinion Scale (MOS) is a standardized questionnaire used to assess synthetic speech. The quality of synthetic speech strongly affects the user experience of working with conversational systems, with listeners making rapid and unconscious judgments of the speaker’s personality, so it’s important to have standardized methods for its assessment. In an earlier article, we

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The UX of Video Streaming Entertainment Websites & Apps

We’ve all spent a lot of time at home this year. The pandemic has made already-popular video streaming services seem essential. The popularity makes sense given the relatively inexpensive subscription fees, the lack of long-term contracts, and the many channels of access (through websites, mobile apps, smart TVs), and there is a LOT of content

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The UX of Pet Websites

Over half of U.S. households have a pet. And for many people, they are more than pets; they are family. But pets are also a big business. It’s estimated that pet related products and services account for $70BB annually in the U.S. alone. And a lot of that spending happens online. To better understand the

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8 Things to Consider When Using Online Panels

Online panels are the go-to method for collecting data quickly for market and UX research studies. Despite their wide usage, surprisingly little is known about these panels, such as the characteristics of the panel members or the reliability and accuracy of the data collected from them. While there isn’t much published data on the inner

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A Better Way To Segment Your Customers

Market segmentation is a valuable technique to understand the commonalities between customers. Knowing current and prospective customers’ similarities and differences allows an organization to introduce new products or modify existing ones, and more effectively communicate and sell to the customers most interested in those products. We’ve conducted a number of market segmentations for clients and

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How Long Is the Typical Online Study?

User and customer research fundamentally rely on collecting data from users and customers. But it can be a constant challenge to find the right number and type of qualified participants . Even when you find the right participants, there’s a limit to how much time they’re willing to spend filling out a survey. A common

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How Accurate Are UX Metrics From Online Panels?

Online panels are a major source of participants for both market research and UX research studies. In an earlier article I summarized some of the research on the accuracy and variability of estimates from online panels. The types of estimates from those studies tended to center around general demographic or psychographic questions (e.g., smoking, newspaper

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How Accurate Are Estimates From Online Panels?

Online panel research has been a boon for market research and UX researchers alike. Since the late 1990s in fact, online panels have provided a cost effective pool of sample participants ready to take online studies, covering topics from soup to nuts (literally)…from apple juice to zippers. But can you trust the data you get

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