Does your UX toolbox look a bit empty? You can’t expect to do the job right without the proper tools.

Let’s check out some of the best UX tools to try in 2016.

Tools to Enhance UX

1. Lookback

The user research tool Lookback lets you record the screen, face, voice, and clicks/gesture of the user all in the same playback document. This goes a long way when reviewing the data — syncing facial expressions and verbalized thoughts with the actual activity, in the same video, gives you more accurate data than relying on one person’s explanation alone. It’s also a lot quicker, and doesn’t burden with unnecessary interrogations.

Lookback works for iOS, OS X, AppleTV, and Android.

LookBack

2. UXPin

The collaborative design platform UXPin lives up to its credo of making design a team sport. Their easy-to-use interface lets you create anything from wireframes to advanced prototypes for feedback from your team, which means you can spend more time getting to the right idea.

One of the best features of UXPin is that you can upload all your design deliverables into the platform to create a “home base” for your work. You can also drag and drop Photoshop and Sketch files into the tool to prototype each layer of your mockup.

UXPin

3. UserTesting

While Lookback is a more DIY research tool, UserTesting offers more involvement (if you want).

This trusted UX research service can handle everything from recruitment, designing tests, conducting tests, delivering data such as videos of the user, data analytics, presentation design — even project managers to keep everything on course. These options are all scalable, so you can lean on them as much or as little as you need.

The basic plan offers video recordings of test, while the Pro plan (with Free Trial) comes with all the fixings.

UserTesting

4. MURAL

The organization and collaboration app MURAL works a lot like a digital, multi-location whiteboard… but even better. You can use more than just a marker, with a system that supports files from YouTube, Vimeo Slideshare, Google Drive, and Evernote.

The usability and interface are pretty self-explanatory, like a real whiteboard. For those times when you simply can’t get everyone in the same place at the same time, this UX tool comes in handy.

MURAL

5. Reframer

Optimal Workshop’s Reframer tools helps you can your team not only collaborate on observations, but also uncover trends and patterns in qualitative data. Test-observers can capture, tag, and rate observations online and in real-time during the test.

While most other research tools focus on data collection, Reframer improves collaboration, enabling greater participation from across the team, and data analysis, with features aimed at pattern-finding.

Reframer

6. Sketch

Bohemian Coding designed Sketch as Photoshop made specifically for digital design, with less features for photography and image manipulation, and more centered on interface design for web and mobile apps. This they accomplished, with many of the beloved Photoshop features intact, with special allowances for designers: the automatic integration of CSS logic, creating and exporting assets in different formats, new layers for new objects, and more.

Sketch is only available for Mac.

Sketch

7. POP (Prototype on Paper)

Paper prototypes have a lot of benefits digital ones don’t, namely time, cost, and ease of making. Of course they lack the more advanced features of digital tools, but luckily the app POP (Prototype on Paper) lets you have the best of both worlds.

POP lets you photograph paper prototypes and add interactive options. This tool is perfect for designers who work best with their hands, allowing them to test their artistic creations without worrying about the technology gap.

POP

8. XMind

Like MURAL, XMind improves collaboration between your team, but with more focus on organization. The UX tool’s best feature is its Mind Mapping, which visualizes your project’s goals, timeline, requirements, and progress.

This style of visualization improves comprehension and avoids miscommunication. And with its automatic cloud storage, XMind works even better with large groups.

XMind

9. Google Drawing

When certain documents require visual aids, the art tool Google Drawing lets users create basic shapes and diagrams with enough complexity to create charts. For UX designers, this means a quick and easy way to create simple buttons, icons, and other visuals without the hassle of more involved apps like Photoshop.

All files created in Google Drawing are saved in Google Drive for easy synchronization across all devices.

Google Drawing

10. Crazy Egg

The data collection tool Crazy Egg describes itself as “a pair of X-ray glasses that lets you see exactly what people are doing on your site.” To this end, it offers analytics like heat maps and click maps.

Certain analytics only go so far, and if you’re still unclear about why users aren’t converting, Crazy Egg might be what you’ve been missing. The Heat Map reveals where users are clicking (and how much), and the Scroll Map shows the how far down your users scroll. The Overlay tool reveals interaction data by element, and the Confetti tool shows all clicks with filter options.

Crazy Egg

Conclusion

Have you used any of these tools? Did we leave out your favorite? Share your opinions and any tools we missed in the comments now.


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The 10 Best UX Tools for 2016