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Five-second test | Definition

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What is a five-second test?

A five-second test is a method of user testing that allows you to measure the first impression users have of your product.

As the name suggests, the first impression is limited to a period of 5 seconds. 5-second tests are often used to check whether websites, apps or products communicate their intended message effectively, quickly and intuitively.

In this type of test, the respondent looks at the design of a website or app for 5 seconds. Afterward, they are asked questions. These may relate to, for example, what the respondent remembers. Personal impressions of the product can also be part of the questionnaire.

How do you interpret 5-second test results?

The most commonly considered topics of a 5-second test are the following:

  • Do people understand the product or service?

  • Does the product communicate the message clearly and directly?

  • Do people feel like they will benefit from the product?

  • Can people remember the company or product name?

Not only can the test be performed quickly, but the initial analysis of the results does not take much time. Ideally, respondents' answers are sorted, categorized and prioritized.

The first basic mood of the respondents can be recognized after a short time. However, in order to obtain more in-depth results, a detailed analysis of all respondents' answers should be carried out.

What are the advantages of a 5-second test?

Compared to conventional UX methods, a 5-second test has the following advantages:

  • Speed: A 5-second test can be performed within a few minutes (usually less than 5 minutes.) Preparation and evaluation can be done in a relatively short time.

  • Portability: A test can be performed in almost any situation and at any location. Conceivable test environments are e.g., in the office corridor, on the street, in the test lab, or via online testing.

  • Efficiency: Usable test results are generated easily and quickly.

  • Flexibility: Any object can be tested, e.g., websites, apps, company logos, or packaging designs. The objectives can vary widely. Possible objectives include testing the appearance, design, element placement, perception, user experience, or overall impression.

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