The process of product development is often lengthy. The most important element at the end of this process is product testing. Free product testing offers benefits to both businesses and consumers.
Releasing a product without testing opens the business to potential damage to sales, reputation, and even legal action. Product development always has room for error, but errors mean lost money.
This is where free product testing comes in. Selecting several consumers, via online participation or a marketing company, to experience the new product or service before it is public will give you crucial feedback.
This feedback could be used to report back to the development team and improve weaknesses or inconsistencies with the new product before launching it to the public.
Product testing is important for all businesses. To fully understand the importance of product testing and how it’s done, let’s look at all aspects of the testing process.
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Product Testing – Free Product Testing & Paid Product Testing
You may be wondering if the brands you support conduct real product testing, and the answer is yes. At least they should be. Most major brands have multi-million-pound testing budgets.
Free product testing is an excellent way for smaller brands to implement an effective testing strategy.
What is Product Testing?
Product testing has been every mass-produced brand’s key quality indicator for decades.
This ensures that whatever product you’re using is up to code with legislation regarding advertised standards.
Product testing also aims to educate consumers about the product’s intended purposes and whether it suits their needs.
In addition to ensuring that all quality and safety standards are met, product testing involves ironing out bugs and problems and figuring out ways to boost cost-effectiveness.
Major brands using free product testing and putting their product out there not only allow for a much larger sample size and data pool to process. It also allows for more varied and useful user feedback and stress testing.
Product testing is usually done by a group of consumers invited to participate. They will be given the product and then will test it for its desired purpose and give their feedback.
Free Product Testing for Brands
Free product testing is a very cost-effective option for many smaller companies. Brands may engage consumers directly or through a dedicated market research agency. Even outsourcing free product testing is relatively inexpensive.
Typically, all you pay a market research company to do is find and organise your test subjects.
Rather than paying your test subjects, you’ll typically offer them a chance to win one of your products or a raffle prize in exchange for their time and opinions.
Check out some of the platforms we’ve listed later in this article for guidance on where to find product testers.
Benefits of Free Product Testing:
- Receive detailed consumer feedback on new products pre-launch – Testing helps identify flaws or needed adjustments before going to market.
- Increase brand awareness and social buzz – Testers often share about products on social media, exposing brands to new audiences.
- Gain user-generated content like reviews, photos and videos to use in marketing.
- Understand if pricing, messaging or positioning resonates with target customers.
- Identify ideal customer segments to target initial sales and marketing efforts.
Approaches to Free Product Testing:
Brands provide free product samples to social media influencers, bloggers, and review site users in exchange for reviews based on their experience with the product.
Select testers can access a free trial of early product versions to provide feedback and identify bugs before full market release.
Brands recruit participants for guided discussions on everything from product concepts to advertising campaigns to get qualitative feedback.
Ongoing community of target customers who regularly take surveys, provide reviews, participate in studies and give feedback on company products or services.
How To Become a Free Product Tester – Influencer Marketing
If you want to become a free product tester for businesses, a good place to start is to have a quality blog with matching quality content.
Your content should be relevant to the industry you would like to be a tester for and the audience associated with that industry.
Your blog should offer different information on what these consumers might be looking for and how the companies can use your online presence as a channel for their free product testing opportunities.
By maintaining a consistent YouTube presence and updating your content periodically, you can guarantee companies worldwide will be more aware of your online presence and target you when it comes to free product testing.
This generates hype for you and them, so it’s a win-win if you deal with the right people. The power of online video marketing is undeniable.
By staying on the social media influencer route, you could become a free product tester by investing in your Instagram presence. Use the following you have on Instagram and any similar social media platforms.
Advocate the brands you admire the most through your posts. Start small with reaching out to brands; don’t consider going straight to the big leagues until you establish your brand ambassador status.
There are also a few guidelines and general etiquette tips to keep in mind before diving straight into free product testing:
Make It Believable
Say you stumble upon a survey on a product testing site asking whether or not you clean your windows. Even though you probably don’t even consider that process, that survey looks for people who genuinely want to clean their windows more easily.
It’s about some new glass cleaner or the next generation of laser-guided window wipers. Is this something you want to test?
Know what you’re looking for and genuinely make an effort to appeal to the people in charge, as if you could genuinely benefit from the opportunity to give their product a spin.
And at the same time, don’t make yourself look unreliable should you be even slightly interested in trying out the latest technology in window cleaning.
Go All Out
Marketing companies that set up free product testing events appreciate it when your feedback is insightful for the average consumer.
They also like it when your reviews and relevant media, such as videos or photos, do the product the justice it deserves. This means spreading information about what they’re offering and generating hype.
Ensure to include more detailed extra information on the product you have been testing.
Adding all that extra info shows the company you’re interested in and gives them opinions about what to add or modify to the product before unleashing it to the public. And it makes them rely more on your opinions and reviews for future products.
Free Product Testing Sites: How to Become a Product Tester
When looking to become a free product tester, the first step is to look into product testing sites and find the best product testing companies. We have looked into a few of the best product testing sites to get you started on your free product testing journey.
This guide can also help you find free product testers if you’re a brand.
These companies are known to give out various products depending on their affiliations but don’t go in thinking you’ll be drowning in loot. These sites are also primarily free to join and participate in.
Should any product testing site ask for your credit card details or personal credentials that seem shifty, we recommend you exit stage left and find a different opportunity.
In product testing programs, BzzAgent stands out as one of the more well-known and prolific gateways into the trade, especially in the United Kingdom.
It’s not quantum physics to figure out the game plan here: They send you a thing. You review it and show it to your friends and family, share it on social media and leave a review on their site.
Add a generous amount of word-of-mouth marketing, and they’ll let you keep your stuff. Your chances of receiving even more stuff increase as they invest in you.
Usually, they send your loot directly to your doorstep for testing purposes or keepsies. Other times, they’ll just send you a voucher or some form of a claim for a free pickup at any store that supplies the product in question.
Getting into it is as simple as can be if you’re a resident of the US, UK or Canada. All you’d need to do is sign up, create your profile there, and periodically check for product testing campaigns now and again.
Do make an effort to try things you want, though; it’s not very professional to just grab everything in sight.
You’ll have to inform the folks over at BzzAgent about all the feedback you got from your reviews and word-of-mouth marketing efforts for them to take a liking to you and offer you even more campaigns.
People’s opinions on BzzAgent have generally been positive, with users receiving multiple opportunities to try out various gear and get a gift through vouchers or coupons.
If you thought that Amazon was just an online store, you wouldn’t be alone, but you would be wrong. Amazon is host to untold amounts of reviews for all of the products they have on offer.
So it only makes sense that an industry titan like Amazon would have its product testing initiative, Amazon Vine.
If you’ve left many reviews on Amazon’s many varied items for sale, and if people have found them more helpful than anything else over the years, you’re eligible to be invited to the Amazon Vine scheme.
It works because Amazon Vine picks reviewers for specific items based on their bids on the programs.
They’re either accepted or rejected to review said items, with the difficulty of getting accepted depending on the product type. Experienced “Voices,” say that reviewing a newfangled and shiny electrical appliance is much harder than your garden variety book.
Go and have a look at any of the marked Amazon Vine reviews out there on Amazon.
You’ll quickly notice how expansive, detailed and almost all-encompassing it is, complete with pictures and even video of the products being displayed and thoroughly tested.
So it’s safe to say that Amazon Vine delivers on its promises.
They demand a level of dedication in their reviews that most might find too time-consuming and daunting. This is a good choice for those who want to avoid sharing their opinions on social media.
This product testing site is more exclusive than your free product testing choice. Influenstar is an invite-only free product testing service. You’ll need to request an invite and wait a bit before they send you any confirmation via email.
After you get your invite, you sign up and fill out your profile as much as possible, making sure to link your social media accounts and websites to your profile for increased visibility.
Spreading their brand awareness and that of the products via social media sharing is key to the success of sites like these. After signing up and fleshing out your profile, Influenster will send boxes full of samples and free swag for you to try out.
These “VoxBox” packages are available after being invited to qualify for them on the site and jumping through the ensuing survey. You’ll have to wait for their email confirmation before getting your hands on your VoxBox.
After that, it’s pretty standard proceedings from then on.
You test out your new loot, write a few reviews full of honest opinions and take from your experiences. This will boost your image and ranking to the folks at Influenstar. It’s worth a spin if you want to cover as many bases when it comes to free product testing.
Super Savvy Me
This site primarily uses coupons and information about the various Procter and Gamble brands. It also happens to run the Savvy Circle, a product testing initiative dealing in Procter and Gamble’s various products through free product testing campaigns.
You can claim many beauty and grooming products from brands such as Wella, Braun, MaxFactor and Olay.
The catch with Super Savvy Me is that it’s a lot less frequent with the programs it offers than most of the other free product testing sites. But when it rains, it pours.
When you eventually DO get accepted for a trial, they shower you with a lot of free loot. They even throw in a gift or two, simple stuff like towels and sundries, though, so don’t get your hopes up too high.
The masterminds at the Savvy Circle like it when its users put in much effort regarding detailed reviews about their product tests.
They’ll have you leaving in-depth reviews on sites like Amazon and posting about your triumph on social media. They have a system where you’re continuously rewarded for your contributions to them and the product’s parent company.
This is a tried and true free product testing site for anyone looking to become a free product tester at home.
Toluna is a product tester that follows your standard survey and product testing where you get to try out free products from brands such as Maybelline and Nivea just to name a couple.
All you need to do is to sign up, and it’s completely free.
Although it’s more about how fortunate you are, since there’s a more limited number of items up for grabs, you’d need to apply for each item one at a time on their product testing page and go through several surveys.
As Toluna has a massive member base, it’ll always be hard to receive free products to test. However, they pay you after each survey you complete, so that’s something worth noting.
Most of the items you can expect from Toluna are cosmetic and sanitary.
Why Use Free Product Testing?
When you become a free product tester, you can potentially receive many free products from brands you know and love. And for nothing but some dedication and a simple investment of your time.
When it comes to free product testing, the sky’s the limit for how much you can accumulate over the years, and it’s a great way to scrimp and save if you’re a frequent tester.
This opens up doors for brands to cheap and effective product testing and assurance as part of the sales and marketing process.
The payoff for long-term investment in free product testing is, without a doubt, a worthwhile endeavour.
Free Product Testing FAQ
Q: How many testers should brands aim for?
A: Most experts recommend testing with at least 100-200 representative customers to get sufficient feedback. Testing with 1,000+ provides even more data.
Q: What incentives can be offered for free product testing?
A: Free products, discounts, early access, public acknowledgement, and giveaways are popular incentives without paying testers.
Q: How long should the testing period run?
A: Anywhere from 1 week to 1 month is typical, depending on the product and usage time needed. Schedule follow-ups after initial testing as well.
Q: What are signs my product is ready for public launch?
A: Consistently positive feedback, few identified flaws and high product satisfaction scores from testers are good readiness indicators.
Free Product Testing Conclusion:
Product testing with real target users before launch is invaluable for gaining unbiased insights into how your offerings resonate. This guide has outlined various approaches, tools, and best practices that brands, big and small, can leverage to test products for free.
From recruiting engaged testers to gathering feedback across social platforms, today’s options make building an effective testing program scalable and affordable. While testing takes effort, the long-term benefits of improving products and marketing based on data-driven consumer preferences are immense. Use testing as an ongoing way to engage customers and drive innovations rather than a one-time pre-launch requirement.