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For many people, working from home as a website tester would seem an ideal career. You can work at your own pace reviewing websites, testing features and relaying back information on how well the sites work. Just be aware that for most of these jobs, the pay starts out on the low side and increases based on your speed and efficiency.
Basic Skills Needed
You don't need a college degree, special certifications or programming experience to get a job as a website tester. Most companies require a more basic set of skills. For example, you need to be fluent in English and an effective communicator, both written and verbal. You should also have a critical eye and not be afraid to point out problems with a website, such as a log-in section that doesn't work or a video that won't load. In addition, you must be able to talk in a microphone and explain what confuses you about a site, such as having a hard time locating a place to contact someone with a question. You should be able to perform all required tasks, including recording video screencasts of your work as you progress through the website. Finally, you must be able to write a summary about your experience and the pros and cons of the site.
Equipment That You'll Need
The equipment you'll need varies from company to company. Some companies simply require that you have a computer with the most updated browser software, a microphone and a webcam. Other companies require that your Mac have at least OS X 10.8 or your PC have at least Windows 7, as of publication. And you should have a high-speed DSL connection. If you're also testing mobile websites, you might need a phone with a front-facing camera, at least iOS 7 or higher for iPhone or iPad, and at least Android 4 for Android smartphones.
How the Job Works
For most of these jobs, you'll join a community of website testers and create a profile. The site will notify you when new jobs are available and you can claim the ones you're interested in. Website testing jobs typically deliver a specific set of tasks that you need to perform on a website. You'll record video as you're testing the site and comment in your microphone each step of the way about what's confusing and what's easy. At the end of the test, you'll write a summary of your experiences. As of publication, your pay might range from a $10 for a test that takes about 15 minutes, up to $25 for a 20-minute test.
How to Find Testing Jobs
You can find testing jobs by searching for website tester jobs online and locating companies that look for these services. These types of companies include UserFeel, WhatUsersDo, Try My UI and You Eye. You'll have to complete an online application that may include a questionnaire, java detection and a microphone setup. You'll also need to complete a sample test that includes a sample video and audio recording and a written summary of your experience.
With features published by media such as Business Week and Fox News, Stephanie Dube Dwilson is an accomplished writer with a law degree and a master's in science and technology journalism. She has written for law firms, public relations and marketing agencies, science and technology websites, and business magazines.