Project Overview

I performed usability testing on a web app called Get Five Stars. Then I created wireframes of my solutions to the problems that I found from testing.

The goal of this project is to improve the conversion rate of trial users becoming paid users by finding and fixing usability problems that new users experience. Through testing I discovered several usability problems; two of the major problems are covered in this case study.

About Get Five Stars

Get Five Stars allows business owners to build a database of customers and send them requests to leave feedback on their business. If a customer leaves positive feedback, the system encourages those customers to leave the feedback with one of the major review sites, such as Yelp and Facebook, which enhances the businesses’ online marketing efforts. Get Five Stars offers multiple ways to build a database and manage feedback.

GetFiveStars is a automated platform that helps businesses of all sizes gather feedback, evaluate customer satisfaction, generate testimonials and help them grow online reviews.
— Aaron Weiche, CMO of Get Five Stars


The first step I took was to review the app for potential usability problems. I highlighted a few areas that I thought could be problematic and created scenarios for the test. I also created some scenarios for high value sections of the app that I didn’t see glaring usability problems, which was an excellent strategy because I discovered some problems in areas that I didn’t expect.

I created a fictional business called Eddy’s Pies to help users perform their tasks. I gave users login credentials to an account and information about the business necessary to complete each task so they didn’t have to make up information on the spot.

Pilot Test

I wanted to run a pilot test to get a feel for and to make adjustments to the test if necessary. I learned a lot about and got some great feedback from Get Five Stars, so the pilot test was a success.

I made some tweaks to the scenarios after reviewing the results of the pilot test. Running a pilot test was great because it allowed me to see how someone reacted to the scenarios and make necessary adjustments before running the full test on all participants.

After making adjustments to the test, I ran the test on 4 additional users. Here are a couple problems that I found.

Problem #1: Pricing

I tasked users with a) finding out how much time was left in the trial period and b) to find how much it would cost to sign up for a subscription. Finding the remaining time in the trial period was easy enough, but users had trouble finding the price as this clip demonstrates.

Payment Options — The user can’t see the price from this screen
Payment Options — The user can’t see the price from this screen

Get Five Stars has a tiered pricing structure based on the # of businesses in your account. The fact that the pricing is not clear is likely causing people to hesitate to sign up.

My solution is simple: show the price to the user so it is crystal clear. I also ensured that this fits within the current page framework so that they don’t have to redesign the entire page to fit my solution.

Payment Options
Payment Options
  1. Urges the user to sign up for the service.
  2. Reassures the user that there is no risk.
  3. Tells the user they can add more businesses if they plan on adding more later.
  4. Allows the user to update the amount of businesses they will pay for. The prices should get updated instantly if the user clicks on the update link or focuses on another element of the page after updating the # of businesses.
  5. Price per business is programmed to calculate automatically.
  6. Total monthly payment tells the user exactly what they are paying per month and calculated automatically.
  7. Payment section functions exactly as the current site does so no need to reengineer.
  8. Pay Now button tells the user exactly what they are going to do by clicking on the button.

Problem #2: Communication Settings

When a user adds a customer for the first time, they have to choose how to communicate with customers. There are two options: manual or automatic. Automatic means that Get Five Stars sends out feedback request emails to customers gradually. Manual means that feedback request emails get sent out by Get Five Stars only when the user asks for it.

Customer Email Settings
Customer Email Settings
  • One user didn’t understand what the difference was between automatic and manual. She thought that automatic might mean that Get Five Stars pulls customer data from other sources. Clip
  • 3 users misinterpreted the “emails per day” copy to mean sending a single customer that many emails per day. Clip 1Clip 2Clip 3
  • The screen displays some text that isn’t always relevant to which option the user chose. For example, # of emails per day only applies to automatic mode. Also, there is a message telling users to contact support for more emails per day, even if they didn’t select the max.
Customer Email Settings wireframe
Customer Email Settings wireframe
  1. Sets the stage for one of the most important functions of the app.
  2. Better explanations for each mode and communicates that automatic is recommended.
  3. This question diffuses the misunderstanding that GetFiveStars sends multiple emails per day to a single customer. This section only applies to automatic mode, so only show it when automatic is selected.
  4. The “contact support” message only applies to users that need more feedback requests per day than the maximum, so only show it when the max is selected.
  5. Call this out for the user so they understand this regardless of which mode they selected.


Of course, none of this matters if the goals laid out at the beginning are not accomplished. Get Five Stars is currently reviewing the report that I sent them. Once these problems get addressed I will run the tests again and continue to iterate. I will also watch the metrics to verify that more trial users are converting to paid users.

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