We conducted an exhaustive review of software tools on the Web created for conducting usability tests and/or usability evaluations. We found over 100 tools.
As it relates to usability testing, the terms ‘test’ and ‘evaluation’ have very different meanings. When conducting a test, you can collect considerable objective data; but when conducting an evaluation, you are usually limited to collecting a limited amount of subjective or ‘softer’ observational data. The ‘tests’ provide an opportunity to make changes, then to retest, and then to statistically determine if reliable improvements actually have occurred. The ‘evaluations’ can assist you in identifying possible weaknesses in a site, but are less helpful in providing an objective way to statistically measure any improvements once changes are made.
To make it convenient for you to find the tool in which you are most interested, we developed a way to filter and sort all the tools.
You first filter the tools by one of ten major categories. Each category is briefly described on the site.
- Cross-Browser Evaluations
- Eye Tracking Evaluations
- Mobile Tests or Evaluations
- Mouse Tracking Evaluations
- Multivariate (A/B) Testing
- Participant Recruiting for Tests
- Participant Video Evaluations
- Responsive Design Evaluations
- Satisfaction Testing
- Screenshot Evaluations
- Survey Tests or Evaluations
- Traffic Analysis Testing
- User Performance Testing
- Website Load-Speed Evaluations
After selecting a category, you then can use the following six criteria to sort within each category:
- WebRank Stats (Best to Worst)
- Google Page Rank (Best to Worst)
- Alexa Site Rank (Best to Worst)
- Cost (Low to High)
- Offers a Free Version? (Yes or No)
- Provides an Overview Video? (Yes or No)
The first three criteria are related to the relative popularity of each tool. The last three reflect other important information that can help you select the best tool for your purposes.
For example, assume that you first select the ‘Mouse Tracking Evaluations’ category, which will show the 13 tools that are currently available on that topic. You then can click on the WebRank Stats, which will sort the ‘Mouse Tracking Evaluations’ tools by popularity, with the most popular shown first (ClickDensity). If you sort using Google Page Rank, then ClickTale is the most popular; and finally, if you sort using Alexa Site Rank then CrazyEgg is the most popular. We recommend that you evaluate these three tools in more detail to identify the one that best meets your needs. Note that both ClickTale and CrazyEgg provide an overview video to assist in your evaluation.
Most of these ‘Mouse Tracking Evaluation’ tools are reasonably priced. However, if you are working on a limited budget, you can see that five of these 13 tools offer a totally free version (not just a free trial).