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At-Home Testing

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At-Home Testing

During market research product testing projects, it may be decided that the best method of testing a product is for participants to take the product home with them and to use it for an extended period of time. This is known as At-Home Testing.

This method of product testing is generally a qualitative research method, but not exclusively, which can play a very important role for clients when they are carrying out new product development.

The participants’ responses can be fed back to the researchers throughout and/or after the designated At-Home Testing period in a number of ways. For example, this can be via a telephone survey, a written diary or during a face to face focus group session. Any follow-up sessions or surveys will be scheduled in advance at a pre-determined date.

At-Home Testing can be more advantageous when compared to other research methodologies that are frequently employed during new product development and testing. One major advantage is that participants will be able to test the product to a much greater extent than if they were taking part in another method of testing, such as a traditional hall test. Naturally, they will be able to test the product for a longer length of time than hall tests, which usually only last for a short period per participant. At-Home Testing may also allow the participant to use the product in ways or situations that are not possible to replicate in a hall test situation. These factors can lead to more robust and accurate feedback about the product.

A potential draw-back of At-Home testing could be that the researchers would not be present when the product is being tested. Obviously this means that the researcher would not gain first-hand experience and not be able to gauge the immediate reaction of the participants.

At-Home Testing can be used for most different types of product categories, for example electronics, food and drink, cosmetics, health and fitness or home products.

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