Take a user trip
WHAT IS A USER TRIP?
A structured user trip lets you walk in your target audience’s shoes and experience the world from their perspective. The technique provides a useful framework for immersion into an issue and drawing insights from self-observation.
How you go about your user trip will very much depend on the situation and your preferences. There are no hard and fast rules beyond simply taking the journey as a “user”, then reflecting on it.
HOW TO USE IT?
To get most out of the exercise, split a user trip down into three phases:
1: Set-up a journey map
To start, map out a user storyline related to your issue, breaking it down into the key stages of the route or journey.
Be explicit about who’s shoes you will be walking in. Define the role, persona or point-of-view that you will take for this trip and the context for the story.
The journey map worksheet is a useful template to draw key points in your planned trip. You can download the worksheets below.
2: Perform and reflect
Run through the whole scenario. Don’t worry if things don’t go to plan; just keep going from beginning to end.
Once completed, reflect on your experience using the refection worksheet. This helps you focus on key aspects through the journey.
For each stage in the journey think about:
Information and signage
How well informed or guided did you feel? What knowledge gaps or difficulties did you face?
Choices and decisions
What were the decision points in the process? What facilitated or hindered them?
Actions and interactions
What actions did you take. How easy where they to perform? What feedback did you get during the process?
Feelings and emotions
What emotions did you feel throughout? What aspects, if any, made you feel better or worse?
Desired and undesired outcomes
What was the result and what different outcomes would you like? Are there any immediate changes you could make?
3: Vary and repeat
Repeat the exercise several times. If possible, change aspects of the scenario and the persona to gain varying perspectives.
The user trip worksheets are included in our free PLAYBOOK, a collection of 30 of our favourite tools and techniques.
Download them all now in the PLAYBOOK.