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We are defining the usability process for our company and are looking at tools for prototyping and remote usability testing. We would like to use Balsamiq Mockups to do our inital designs but have a couple of questions:

  • Can Balsamiq Mockups be used to create simple prototypes with task flows?
  • Can I then use these with Usabilla to test the flows of a task given to a user?

If not are there any other tools available that can acomplish this?

// Emil

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6 Answers 6

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Like jensgram said there is the ability to link between mockups in Balsamiq. These also persist in the exported PDF documents that Balsamiq generates, but not HTML which I think would be needed for Usabilla.

There is a Balsamiq to html exporter tool http://www.napkee.com/ but I have never used it and do not know if it maintains the links you setup in Balsamiq.

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Just to be clear: a) Usabilla doesn't support linked pdfs. b) Usabilla seems to be a solo page analyser. I mean, you can test one page task, but, if you want to test "findability", by allow the user to search/find certain things on a website, I believe you cannot do that with Usabilla. –  MEM Apr 10 '11 at 16:11

Can Balsamiq Mockups be used to create simple prototypes with task flows?

I may be misunderstanding the question but if you're referring to interactivity within Balsamiq Mockups then yes and no: Balsamiq supports simple (click-) links between "pages" but—as far as I'm informed—does not support any other user input. Keep in mind that it's a mockup tool.

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It's exactly this type of simple interactions we want. Question is if for instance Usabilla (or another tool) can be used for remote usability testing along with these simple interactions? Maybee it is possible to use Balsamiq all the way? –  Emil H Jan 12 '11 at 12:24

We just posted a blog post about this the other day: User-testing your myBalsamiq wireframes with Usabilla

Hope it's helpful!

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You also have Axure that creates interactive html mockups. It's a very powerful tool, which also enables interaction beyond simply navigation transitions.

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You can use VerifyApp to run a linked test, or for a more complete service Userlytics will let you test a prototype (or a live URL). I've used Userlytics a few times ($299/test) but have yet to try the linked test in VerifyApp Premium ($29/month).

Userlytics is quite flexible in that it will let you upload a few different formats for your prototype, including PDF, PNG, HTML. I've created my PNG files in Fireworks and then uploaded my prototype.

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I've started using Invision with exported images from balsamiq mockups to create interactive mockups. You can add a screen sharing tool (webex, gotomeeting) for remote testing.

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