Schedule Time & Gather Materials
- Time for Preparation of the Low-Fidelity Prototype: 1 – 2 Hours
- Time for Testing: 1 – 2 Hours
- Testable Prototype (paper, or laptop with clickable prototype loaded)
- Compensation for participants (for example, low-value gift cards, $5 bills, etc.)
- Recording device and/or notebook and pen
Carry Out This Method
- Choose what needs to be tested. This might be the intuitiveness of a single interaction or affordance, a general layout, a short workflow or process, or the text clarity. This is not the best method for testing complex tasks, large blocks of text, layout or long task flows.
- Choose a public place – a public square, shopping mall, coffee shop, or conference – where many types of people gather. Offer people a small compensation, like a gift card to pay for their coffee or a $5 bill, to look at your interface prototype and share their thoughts.
- Direct your participant attention to the part of the prototype that needs testing and perform a brief think-aloud test. Ask them to perform a task and see where they click, ask their general impression and expectations for the results before the interaction.
- Record your observations and test as many people as possible. Depending on how busy the location and test duration, you can test between 10 and 100 people.
- Collect the results and share them with stakeholders and the product team.
Try These Tips
This testing method can be customized or adjusted as needed in order to accommodate the researcher’s budget and schedule. Change locations, compensation, or prototype as necessary, but be aware that times of day alone can introduce new user types. The more variables you introduce, the less reliable the data.
Explore More Resources
- UX Booth: The Art of Guerrilla Usability Testing
- Userbrain: 7 Step Guide to Guerrilla Usability Testing: DIY Usability Testing Method
- Interaction Design Foundation: 10 Hints for Carrying Out Better Guerrilla Usability Testing
- UX Magazine: Getting Guerrilla With It
- UX Magazine: Failing Fast: Getting Projects Out of the Lab
- Graphic Mint: Oh no you didn’t just say Usability Testing
- CurryBetDotNet: 10 tips for ‘ambush guerilla user testing’