Qualitative research – online or in-person - can help you at many points during the development of your web site. We conduct web site research for our clients at these key stages of development:

· Step One: Before you design anything, learn more about your audience: who they are, what's important to them, and what they view as the pros and cons of competitive sites

· Step Two: Wireframe testing – are you heading in the right direction? Do you have logical navigation schemes in place? Does the nomenclature make sense?

· Step Three: Before you go live, watch and listen as potential users complete common tasks on your site. Can they accomplish their objectives? Where do they get lost? How compelling is the content? Better to find this out with a few testers before you go live rather than have a major problem on your hands after you launch.

· Step Four: Before you launch new features, touch base with experienced users to learn more about any pain-points they are experiencing and what's on their wish list. And be sure you are still compelling to prospects; do they have a positive impression after their first 5 seconds on the site?

Click here to download an article Dorrie Paynter wrote about using qualitative research in web site development. Published in QRCA Views Magazine.