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The right UX research tools can be game-changers, helping you to distill insights from user behavior and apply them to build impactful experiences. 

However, with so many tools on the market, it might be challenging to pick the best ones for your project. 

That’s why we decided to give you a snapshot of the best tools our colleagues have either used or tested, highlighting their key features and their pricing models. 

Table of contents


Ethnio makes it easy to manage your research participant recruitment

Ethnio is a research participant management platform, built by researchers. According to its creators, it was designed with the idea that recruiting participants who care about your product and what it offers provides better quality results than recruiting random users who may or may not have any affinity for what you are building.

Targeted at UX researchers, designers, PMs, marketing specialists, and anyone who is conducting user research, Ethnio can help you intercept people that use your interface from your website or app.

Although the tool was designed to help with live recruiting, you can also use it to schedule participants in advance, recruit for in-person interviews, and build participant pools for other types of UX research.

Interestingly, it also allows you to pay your participants for their time, wherever they might be located, by sending electronic rewards such as Amazon, PayPal, and eGift cards, or other rewards of their choice. 

Key features:

  • provides one central database for all your research participant interaction
  • offers hundreds of payment options in any currency, with no hidden fees
  • allows you to send out screener links via email or post on social media
  • intercepts respondents from anywhere in your product ecosystem, through web or iOS/Android
  • makes scheduling a breeze by managing multiple time zones and providing numerous options to modify and manage all types of scenarios and participant touchpoints 


  • a 14-day free trial is available
  • paid plans start at $79, but unless you’re a light user you’ll need to upgrade to one of the more advanced packages


Tremendous can help you stay on top of payments

Tremendous can be incredibly useful if you’re looking for ways to compensate your study participants. 

The platform allows you to pay people around the world exactly how they want to be paid. It gives the recipients a choice of cash transfers, prepaid cards, gift cards and charity donations.

Tremendous also takes care of all the logistics, including currency conversions, money movement, cross-border regulations, and reporting.

Key features

  • offers an easy way to distribute digital incentives and rewards globally
  • provides a number of reward options, including reward gift cards, prepaid Visa cards, and cash
  • facilitates transfers in bulk and automatically by integrating with its API


  • Tremendous is free to use—you only pay the face value of the rewards 
  • if you send over $200,000+ a year in rewards, you may qualify for discounts or custom pricing

Optimal Workshop

optimal workshop
Open Workshop can help you analyze the findings of your UX research

Optimal Workshop is a UX platform that offers multiple testing methods with specialized tools for card sorting, tree testing, first-click testing, surveys, and user interviews.

It provides access to its recruitment panel of 50+ million participants with a variety of targeting options and 80 languages to choose from. For highly targeted participants, the tool offers a custom recruitment service.

You can place your recruitment orders through the Optimal Workshop app. The tool claims you should see them filled in as little as 4 hours. 

The platform also offers visualizations to help you make sense of the data you gathered. 

Key features

  • offers card sorting, tree testing, first-click testing, surveys, and a qualitative research tool
  • provides visualizations and analytics
  • has an intuitive in-app recruitment panel that gives you access to 50 million people 


  • although the platform does offer a free plan, it’s fairly limited 
  • its most popular package, with unlimited studies and participant responses, is $166 per month
  • there’s also a custom Enterprise plan


Recollective's comprehensive toolkit provides you with everything you need to run UX research

Recollective is a cloud-based software platform with a  suite of features for qualitative and quantitative data gathering, moderation, and analysis. 

It comes with recruiting and onboarding tools to bulk import participants or enable self-registration from email invitations or social networks.

Its comprehensive toolkit provides you with everything you need to run projects in a single platform with centralized data and a streamlined user experience.

With a simple and intuitive interface, the platform can be used as a DIY tool or with a range of support options.

Key features

  • helps to tailor your research to address different segments of participants using asynchronous activities or discussions, real-time chat, and live video interviews
  • can be used for qualitative, quantitative, and mixed research methods
  • supports over 25 languages


  • to get a quote, you need to get in touch with Recollective’s sales team 


Smartlook offers cross-platform analytics

Smartlook is a cloud- and mobile-based analytics solution that provides the “why” behind user behavior. 

Thanks to its always-on session recordings, you can record 100% of your traffic and see the entire user journey. 

The tool also allows you to generate heatmaps for selected areas of your mobile app, and segment and automatically organize them into galleries for easy searching. 

With its cross-platform analytics, you can easily analyze users’ behavior on your website and in your mobile app. 

Key features

  • always-on session records of the entirety of users’ interactions with your product
  • click, movement, and scroll heatmaps
  • cross-platform analytics to track the entire user journey with one tool
  • crash report  pinpointing where a problem occurred, including which user interaction preceded it


  • there is a free plan available with 3,000 monthly sessions, one-month data retention, and some of the basic features
  • paid plans start at €55 per month


Trymata can help you set up remote usability testing

Previously known as TryMyUI, Trymata offers two product suites that you can use together or separately: a usability testing suite and a product analytics suite. 

The product’s usability testing solutions include remote usability testing, moderated user testing, impression testing, UX Diagnostics, and System Usability Scale, to help you set up studies for any kind of digital product on any device. 

With its live product analytics tools, which include session replays, website visitor logs, goal tracking, and heatmaps, you can discover how your users interact with your product and where they encounter bottlenecks. 

When used together, these two product suites can provide in-depth feedback and a holistic view of user experience.

Key features

  • intuitive and easy-to-use remote usability testing and moderated user testing 
  • session replays of every single user session 
  • access to Trymata’s panel of over 500,000 demographically curated testers to every time you run usability tests


  • there are various packages and the prices depend on the suite you need


user testing
UserTesting is one of the industry's most comprehensive UX research solutions

With UserTesting, you can get rapid customer feedback on almost any customer experience, including websites, mobile apps, prototypes, and real-world experiences. 

The platform provides audio and video recordings of people as they engage with your product and complete the tasks you specified. 

It offers one of the industry's most comprehensive UX research solutions, and the research methodologies it provides include:

  • Moderated and unmoderated studies
  • Longitudinal testing
  • Focus groups
  • Survey questions and numeric rating scales
  • Competitive benchmarking
  • Net Promoter Score
  • A/B testing
  • Time on task analysis
  • Click maps, navigation tree testing, and card sorting

What’s more, with UserTesting you can recruit your own customers to participate in user tests.

Recently, the platform launched a new behavioral analytics capability that uses machine learning to automatically identify and view moments of friction as customers interact with your digital products.

Key features

  • moderated and unmoderated studies 
  • access to a diverse and inclusive audience via the UserTesting Contributor Network
  • ML-generated Instant Insight that automatically reveals patterns, anomalies and correlations for task-based questions


  • you need to request a trial to test the platform 

Happy Scribe

happy scribe
Happy Scribe provides automated transcriptions

If you run a lot of user tests and interviews, Happy Scribe can save you plenty of time by providing automated transcriptions. 

Its dedicated transcription editor not only makes it easy to make changes to the text but it also allows you to collaborate with all your stakeholders by sharing your transcripts in view-only or edit mode.

You can then export the file in a number of different formats to use on other platforms. 

Happy Scribe also supports plenty of languages and integrates seamlessly with a wide range of third-party apps, including Zapier and YouTube.

Key features

  • no limits on upload size or length 
  • offers collaborative workspaces 
  • intuitive editor with multiple export formats 
  • automatic subtitles with translations 


  • prices vary depending on whether you need automatic or human-made transcriptions and subtitles

User Interviews

user interviews
User Interviews offers access to a panel of over 3 million research participants

One of the most well-known platforms, User Interviews can help you conduct user testing by building your own pool or accessing its panel of over 3 million vetted research participants from 7 countries. 

The platform also offers a research CRM that allows you to build rich user profiles, port data in and out, and conduct research with all your favorite tools and methods. 

Key features

  • Research Panel with access to over 3 million research participants
  • participation tracking
  • screener surveys


  • individual sessions on the pay-as-you-go plan with participants sourced from the panel are $45; monthly packages start at $175 for up to 60 sessions per year
  • if you build your own panel, paid plans start at $250 per month


Miro is a "digital whiteboard" platform

Miro is a "digital whiteboard" platform that can make it easy to brainstorm and collaborate with others on your UX research projects. 

The tool allows you to create notes and designs, and communicate through embedded video calls or online chats. 

In UX research, Miro can be used to organize the process into a single board that can be worked on collaboratively by your entire team. Whether it’s creating journey maps or user personas, Miro has the right templates and solutions in place. 

Key features

  • real-time collaboration for the entire team
  • 1000+ ready-made templates for various processes
  • integrations with over 100 third-party apps


  • the free plan offers a single workspace with 3 editable boards
  • for more workspaces and boards, you’ll need to upgrade to one of the paid plans which start at $8 per month when billed annually 

Elevate your UX research with surveys

Each of the tools on this list has its unique strengths, and the one you pick will ultimately depend on the type of research you need to carry out. 

However, there is one tool that you’ll always need: a survey. Whether you're collecting opinions about your research process, gathering feedback post-user testing, or looking to understand a particular touchpoint on a user journey, surveys can offer a goldmine of insights in an incredibly cost-effective way.

With Survicate, you can seamlessly integrate surveys into your UX research and automate the entire feedback collection process. Simply sign up for our 10-day free trial, select a survey from among hundreds of ready-to-send templates, and enjoy automated insights.