The Best User Research Companies in The Windy City

Looking for a top user research agency in Chicago?

Look for user experience agencies that specialize in user research. User research is the data collection process that lays the foundation for exceptional user experiences. While there are many advantages to user research, be wary of bad user research.

For example, when looking for a user experience agency to hire, ask about the role user research plays in its design process. A sign of good user research is when it occurs at the beginning of a project – throughout the discovery stages. User research is a tool to learn about user needs and challenges, not to validate an existing idea for a feature.

To assist you in your search for a partner, we’ve compiled this list of the top user research firm in Chicago. Browse descriptions, feedback, and awards to find which can best suit your company’s needs.

List of the Best Chicago User Research Companies

  • 1

    Fuzzy Math

    Fuzzy Math is a Chicago, IL user experience company with around 15 employees. The company, which was founded in 2009, has a user-centered design approach to drawing up interactive applications and devices for enterprise and midmarket businesses. Their clients are primarily in the healthcare industry, as well as consumer products, financial services, education, and others.

    Notable Project

    Fuzzy Math partnered with an insurance company to create product and service design, which required reading over 600 pages of brand research. Fuzzy Math's online reports for the insurance company had an open and click-through rate of about 85%.

    "The presentations they’ve developed and that we’ve delivered to our leaders have always been well-received. They designed an online report...that speaks to how well-designed, clear, and useful their work is." - Design Strategist, Large Insurance Company

    Former clients
    Wells Fargo
    TaxAct
    Mayo Clinic
    IBM
    Allstate
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    21 Clutch reviews
    Awards

    Best Internet Health Application By Health Care Communications: Silver (2012)

  • Tell us about your project

    NEED HELP SELECTING A COMPANY?

    Based on your budget, timeline, and specifications we can help you build a shortlist of companies that perfectly matches your project needs. Schedule a free consultation with a Manifest Analyst.

  • 2

    UX 4Sight

    UX 4SIght is a Chicago-based UX-design agency founded in 2009. Their team of approximately 10 employees mostly services midmarket to enterprise-level clients in the financial, educational, and medical sectors. They specialize in streamlining web and mobile applications for an optimal UX.

    Notable Project

    UX 4Sight designed a website for an OBGYN practice. They delivered mockups before launching into web development. The finished solution led to a 35% increase in the customer's client acquisition. 

    "The new site has a stronger and much more professional brand, which has instilled trust in patients in our services." — Owner, OBGYN Practice

     

    Former clients
    Verizon
    Disney
    Seaworld
    University of Chicago
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    2 Clutch reviews
  • 3

    Table XI

    Table XI is a mobile app and custom software developer based in Chicago, IL. Founded in 2002, they are a team of 50 curious minds that specialize in building websites, mobile applications and custom digital experiences for companies ranging from startups to well-known brands.

    Notable Project

    Table XI recreated the website of a global events company, building a video player and an iOS app to deliver content, all with no site downtime. After the migration, the app and site functioned seamlessly. The client recommended Table XI for their cost, clarity, and adherence to deadlines.

    “Table XI has been a key component in our growth, and without them, we couldn’t move forward.” – Founder and CEO, International Events App.

    Former clients
    Chicago Ideas
    Dickson
    Keiser
    Northwestern University
    Tyson Foods
    Discovery Financial
    AccuWeather
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $75,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    42 Clutch reviews
  • 4

    ArtVersion

    Founded in 1999, ArtVersion is a web design industry veteran. Headquartered in Chicago with other locations in Portland, OR and San Francisco, CA, ArtVersion's team of 14 provides web design, UI/UX design, graphic design, and branding.

    Notable Project

    A visual media consultant hired ArtVersion to create a new logo and ended up producing an entire branding campaign, website, and blog. The client has seen positive results from the work, even after the partnership ended.

    "I feel like they’re almost a member of our family. They’ve been great over the years, and I was actually able to work with ArtVersion remotely for the first several years. To me, being able to communicate clearly with a client and understand their style and goals, even when we haven’t sat together face-to-face says a lot." – Founder, Visual Media Consultant

    Former clients
    Toyota
    Johnson & Johnson
    Shell
    Qualcomm
    Northwestern University
    Sears
    Morgan Stanley
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    25 Clutch reviews
    Awards

    2017 Vega Digital Awards , 2015-2017 Awwwards: Honorable Mention , 2016 Vega Digital Awards , 2016 CIO Reviews: 20 Most Promising Web Development and Design Solution Providers , 2013 American Design Award , American Pixel Academy: 2012 Mazie Award

  • 5

    Sandstorm Design

    Sandstorm Design is a brand strategy and UX agency founded in 1998. Based in Chicago, the team of 31 employees specializes in UX/UI design, web development, and branding. They primarily serve midmarket clients in the consumer products and services, health care, and education industries. 

    Notable Project

    Sandstorm Design assisted a health care consultant by building a billing app that allows doctors and billers to work more efficiently. They also help with other projects, such as scheduling and organization efforts. Overall, the client was impressed with the results. 

    "The team is nice and easy to work with." – Director of Marketing, Heath Care Consultant

    Former clients
    Crown Holdings
    NOW Foods
    University of Illinois Chicago
    University of Chicago
    Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS)
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $100,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    7 Clutch reviews
  • 6

    Codal

    Codal is a full stack agency located in Chicago, IL. Their 90+-person team works in mobile app development, strategy, e-commerce development, and UX design. Their clients include enterprise companies and startups. Over the years they have worked in consumer products, business services, health, and education.

    Notable Project

    Codal worked with a gift-giving company on the UX and UI for their online and mobile platform. The company helps users manage outreach and donations for important family events such as birthdays, anniversaries, or holidays. Codal built a web application that tracked these events in the user’s life. Codal built and integrated wireframes for the app.

    “They have been my partner more than a developer. From early on, they have been focused on providing solutions across the board.” – Founder, Gift Service

    Former clients
    Pepsi
    Stokkup
    United Airlines
    ShowroomSquared
    DoSomething.org
    Indicard
    Tabd
    Next Door Self Storage
    Feeding America
    FirmHero
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $75,000+
    group50 - 249 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.6
    4.6
    20 Clutch reviews
  • 7

    Mightybytes

    Mightybytes is a full service creative firm located in Chicago, Ill. With about 10 employees, Mightybytes supports clients by providing UX/UI design, web development, and SEO services. Mightybytes is also a Certified B Corporation, which was very important to the nonprofit client.

    Notable Project

    Mightybytes built a website for a nonprofit with the goal of educating a local audience about sustainability issues. Once the website was complete, the nonprofit invested in a second phase of development.

    "They are truly one of the best project-managed firms I’ve ever worked with. They are extremely efficient. I would recommend them to anyone looking for a Web development firm." - Director of College Partnerships, Nonprofit

    Former clients
    DePaul University
    Allstate
    Chicago Community Trust
    YMCA
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    9 Clutch reviews
    Awards

    Top Agency: Top SEO Agencies in Chicago (2017) , Web Design Rankings: Ten Best Chicago Web Design Companies (2018)

  • 8

    Digital AMMO

    Digital AMMO is a digital product agency headquartered in Chicago. Since 2008, the 4-person team has supplied branding, web design, and UX/UI designs to small and midmarket businesses. 

    Notable Project

    Digital AMMO rebuilt a website to provide resources for seniors and disabled people on behalf of a smart home automation research organization. They designed the navigation, implemented SEO, abided by accessibility guidelines, and translated technical research into easy-to-read content. The website exceeded the client's expectations in its design and ability to serve the intended community.

    "Digital AMMO listened intently to our ideas and vision to create content that clearly reflected what we were trying to communicate." – Executive Director, Smart Home Automation Research Collective

    Former clients
    Zuckerman Investment Group
    Code Platoon
    HM Healthcare Partners
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    15 Clutch reviews
  • 9

    Centretek

    Centretek is a full-service IT and digital marketing company based in an Ellicott City, Md. They have about 45 employees that have developed websites and mobile apps since 2001. They focus on Drupal development and UX/UI design for the healthcare, non-profit, and education industries.

    Notable Project

    Centretek conducted a comprehensive Drupal website redesign for a collegiate medical center as part of an over $200,000 engagement. Working within brand guidelines, they collaborated on wireframes. They spearheaded the entire frontend build and hosted the backend on Rackspace. Since launching the new platform, conversions have notably increased, yielding more appointment bookings regularly.

    "Centretek really cares about their relationships with their clients. They take accountability seriously, which gives us a great sense of confidence." -Senior Director of Marketing and Communications, University Medical Center

    Former clients
    Inova
    State of Maryland
    Stanley Black &;Decker
    Corvias
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place La Grange, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    7 Clutch reviews
  • 10

    Punchkick Interactive

    Punchkick Interactive is a digital development agency in Chicago that was founded in 2006. It has more than 30 employees and specializes in custom software development, UX/UI design, and mobile app development for enterprise and midmarket clients.

    Notable Project

    Punchkick Interactive created a website using WordPress for an insurance company. The site was built for mobile, but is as responsive as possible on all devices. The team started with research and consulting, then designed the UX design and performed some initial user testing. The client was very happy with the finished product, citing an increase in leads.

    "The website is a vehicle for driving leads to our doorstep. Also, the efficiencies on the backend save administrators considerable time." –Assistant VP of Marketing, Insurance Company

    Former clients
    Marriott
    PetSmart
    Home Credit
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    3 Clutch reviews
  • 11

    Vault Innovation

    Founded in 2012, Vault Innovation Group is a 10+-person team based in Chicago, IL. Their services include mobile app and web development and UX/UI design. They also offer branding and post product launch services.

    Notable Project

    Vault Innovation developed a content management system (CMS) for a globally recognized media company. Their work included building wireframes on the frontend and identifying and adding missing elements to the backend. They built the entire CMS from start to finish.

    “Project management was really sharp. I would hire the project manager for my own team in a second.” – VP of Consumer Marketing, Media Company

    Former clients
    GamerzArena
    Flo
    Gig Scout
    HeroKey
    Chicago Tribune
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.7
    4.7
    18 Clutch reviews
  • 12

    Eight Bit Studios

    Founded in 2008, Eight Bit Studios is based in Chicago, IL. They work on mobile apps, customer software development, and UX/UI design for clients of all sizes. The team of 35+ employees serves key industries, including education, gaming, and business.

    Notable Project

    Eight Bit Studios redeveloped a product for an augmented-reality gaming platform. They had to review the platform to learn how as operating and then piece the platform back together. They were able to ensure all code worked properly.

    "They had to learn a lot about our platform in a short amount of time, which they did very capably. And there’s a great vibe emitted by their whole studio. They’re very professional, friendly, and eager to deploy their deep technical knowledge.” – CEO, Augmented Reality Gaming Platform

    Former clients
    Echo Logistics
    UL
    New Balance
    Trident
    and Hasbro
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $75,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    27 Clutch reviews
  • 13

    Symmetri Marketing

    Symmetri Technology is a web developer based in Northville, Mich. and founded in 2008. Their team of 6 employees who specialize in web development, web design, and UX/UI design for midmarket and enterprise clients in the education, manufacturing, and advertising industries. 

    Notable Project

    Symmetri Technology updated the website of a global automotive supplier. They modified the existing Drupal site to include a content management system, which the client wanted in order to make the site easier to navigate and use. The client was impressed with the new site and said that it was bringing in more traffic. 

    “They were always extremely flexible throughout the implementation process. They were absolutely invaluable.” – Manager of Identity & Design, Global Automotive Supplier
     

    Former clients
    National Geographic
    Kettering University
    The Detroit Zoo
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    5 Clutch reviews
  • 14

    Grand Studio

    Grand Studio is a digital strategy and product design consultancy headquartered in Chicago. Founded in 2018, they now have about 15 employees who specialize in UX/UI design services. Their clients are typically in the financial services, media, or retail industries. 

    Notable Project

    GrandStudio managed the discovery, design, and development of a product suite for a nonprofit subsidiary. Following interviews with internal stakeholders, they developed a design methodology, conducted consumer interviews, and performed user-testing. The deliverables exceeded expectations and established a lasting positive impact on the client's development initiatives. 

    "Our team still remembers them because of their amazing people and communication skills." — Director of Strategy, Nonprofit Subsidiary 

    Former clients
    Allstate
    American Express
    NBA
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer

    Undisclosed

    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    3 Clutch reviews
  • 15

    TangoCode

    TangoCode, founded in 2015, is a woman-owned custom development company. The company is headquartered in Chicago, with additional offices in Montevideo, Uruguay, and Cuenca, Ecuador. Their team of 41 employees specialize in custom software development, mobile app development, and AI. They work with mid-market and small businesses that are mostly in the advertising & marketing, financial services, and automotive industries. 
     

    Notable Project

    TangoCode did mobile app development for an arts and social impact nonprofit. The client needed a mobile app that would help promote their new initiative to a younger audience. TangoCode developed the app for iOS and Android, and they used TestFlight and Nevercode to test the app. The company has built a relationship with the client, and the client was happy with the app. 

    “Their team created really beautiful designs. They developed an app that is very much on brand, implementing our logos, colors, and patterns into the platform.”— Chief Communications Officer, Arts & Social Impact Nonprofit
     

    Former clients
    Barnes & Noble
    Aprimo
    RentPath
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    7 Clutch reviews
  • 16

    Chromatic

    Headquartered in Chicago and made up of strategists, designers, and developers, Chromatic is a fully distributed team that supports clients with web challenges. 

    Notable Project

    Chromatic rebuilt websites using Drupal for a magazine publishing company. At the clients request, they focused on improving the UX and adding useful custom features. Adhering to  SEO best practice expanded the site's online visibility. Chromatic offered a perfect balance of technical ability and thoughtful accommodation.

    "One of our properties saw a 50% increase in organic traffic from Google and other search engines after being moved to the new platform."–Director of Product Management, Magazine Publishing Company

    Former clients
    Maui Jim
    Imprivata
    American Hospital Association
    Harvard University
    Farm Journal Media
    BoatTEST
    Segal Benz Communications
    Meredith Publishing
    Casper
    Martha Stewart
    Parents.com
    Outside Magazine
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.9
    4.9
    9 Clutch reviews
  • 17

    Rival 11 Studio

    Rival 11 Studio is a design firm founded in 2019 and based in Crystal Lake, Ill. Their team of fewer than 10 specializes in UX/UI, web, and other design services for clients that work in the fields of advertising, business services, and health care.

    Notable Project

    Rival 11 Studio designed a website for a digital consultancy. The consultancy wanted a website that had a focus on its overall aesthetic. The website ended up meeting the standards of the consultancy.

    “If clients are looking for somebody who can provide that level of honesty, work with Rival 11 Studio.” - Principal, Digital Consultancy

    Former clients
    Usman Group
    Venture-G
    Bottles
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $1,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Crystal Lake, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    1 Clutch review
  • 18

    Conifer Research

    Conifer Research is a research and design agency that has been offering market research, UX/UI design, and business consulting services to their enterprise and mid-market clients in the consumer products, health care, and hospitality industries since 2001. Their team of 50 employees is based out of their office in Chicago.

    Notable Project

    Conifer Research recently worked on research and business planning for a sound company. They provided market research management and looked into an expansion initiative for the client. 

    “Their ability to think outside the box and be nimble stood out. They brainstormed and were involved in the work, which allowed them to find creative ways to get at the answers we wanted.” – Former Creative Director, Sound Company

    Former clients
    McDonalds
    Sonos
    PepsiCo
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    1 Clutch review
  • 19

    Vokal

    Based in Chicago and founded in 2009, Vokal is a mobile and digital agency with nearly 50 employees. Their team specializes in web design and development, mobile app development, and digital strategy.  

    Notable Project

    Working with an in-house team, Vokal helped an industrial distributor build a mobile e-commerce platform, developing the application and managing the engineering aspects. The app is responsive and has received positive reviews in the app store. 

    "It was a collaborative process and they became our true partner." —Senior Director of E-Commerce, Industrial Distributor

    Former clients
    Whole Foods
    Spot Hero
    Walgreens
    Groupon
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    4.8
    4.8
    5 Clutch reviews
  • 20

    SYNERGY Consulting

    SYNERGY Consulting is a development agency based in New York with more than 10 experts. Founded in 2006, they specialize in mobile app development, custom software development, and UX/UI design solutions for clients ranging from small companies to large firms.

    Notable Project

    SYNERGY Consulting developed a website for a restaurant. SYNERGY Consulting worked on both front and backend development for the website. The site originally had problems but they were eventually resolved.

    “I would consider him rehiring him for the hotel itself.” - General Manager, Restaurant

    Former clients
    SummerTech
    JLD Evaluations
    Uplift
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IN
    5.0
    5.0
    12 Clutch reviews
  • 21

    Futurehaus

    Futurehaus is a digital product and strategy company based in Chicago. The company, founded in 2010, has a team of less than ten that provides UX/UI design, web development, mobile app development, marketing strategy, and digital strategy services to small and midmarket companies in the business services and consumer products & services, as well as nonprofit organizations and government agencies.

    Notable Project

    A trafficking & exploitation nonprofit hired Futurehaus to develop its website. The website is to help educate the general public about commercial sexual exploitation issues, feature profiles of survivors of sexual exploitation, and serve as a vehicle to encourage additional organizations to partner in its advocacy. After the website was launched, Futurehaus was tasked to maintain it. The website recieved good feedback from visitors and attracted a growing number of organizations to join.

    "We were very pleased with both the skill and the compassion they showed in their design and execution of the website." - Founding Co-Chair, Trafficking & Exploitation Nonprofit

    Former clients
    Cleancio
    Year Up
    Exelon
    Jugl
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $25,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    5 Clutch reviews
  • 22

    Kalapa Design Studio

    Kalapa Design Studio is a studio founded in 2020 in Chicago. With no more than 10 professionals, they provide branding, web design, and UX/UI design solutions for clients in the fields of advertising, business services, and IT.

    Notable Project

    Kalapa Design Studio developed a WordPress website for a private network management business. The business needed customized web pages for their site. Kalapa Design Studio provided exactly what the business needed.

    “I can’t recommend their team enough!” - ole Proprietor, Private Network Management Business

    Former clients
    Apple
    AWS
    Google
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $5,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    5 Clutch reviews
  • 23

    Foxbox Digital

    Foxbox is a mobile app development company based in Chicago. Founded in 2018, the team of 40 specializes in mobile app development, UX/UI design, and web development. They work with small business and midmarket clients.

    Notable Project

    Foxbox worked on React Native mobile development for a meal kit subscription service. They updated the code for an Android and iOS mobile app using React Native. In addition, they also mentored the in-house staff in the technological application to independently maintain the project. The client appreciated the expertise they brought to the project.

    “Their knowledge is extremely deep in a fairly new technology. They have worked well with people, which we valued because of the mentoring aspect.” – CTO, Meal Kit Subscription Service

    Former clients
    Anthem
    Home Chef
    X Co.
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $50,000+
    group10 - 49 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    10 Clutch reviews
  • 24

    ProdRocket

    ProdRocket is a Chicago-based MVP development studio founded in 2019. Their team of 1–2 employees primarily serves startups by providing web and mobile app design and development. They also provide UX/UI design, marketing strategy, and app marketing. They're particularly proficient in the WordPress and React Native frameworks.

    Notable Project

    ProdRocket developed a market strategy for a content marketing and networking startup. They collaborated with the client to define the client's revenue model, target market, and channel strategy. Their work enabled the client to attain users and quickly attain revenue.

    "Yes, we’ve launched the platform and have quickly got adoption - with dozens of projects and already generating revenue." — Founder & CEO, Content Networking Startup

    Former clients
    BookMigo
    Motivity
    TuneKey
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    2 Clutch reviews
  • 25

    Theydo

    Theydo is a design studio headquartered in Chicago. The company has less than 10 people, and they specialize in UX/UI design, branding, and web design. 
     

    Notable Project

    Theydo designed a new website for a cryotherapy service. The client’s original website simply had a webpage for their machine sales, but they wanted to build a custom website exclusively for the machine sales. Their goals were to increase leads for machine sales through organic internet searches, and they wanted more visibility for their machines. Theydo consistently met with the client, and they used PHP, HTML5, and JavaScript to create the website. The company also added Google Analytics for the client. After creating the website, the client increased their sales.
     

    “I've doubled my revenue from machine sales from this point last year. Neal and Bart delivered a really high-quality product and design in under a month.” — Co-Founder and CFO, Cryotherapy Service 
     

    Former clients
    Tickety
    Interaction Studio
    Woders
    $ $ $ $ $
    equalizer $10,000+
    group2 - 9 Employees
    place Chicago, IL
    5.0
    5.0
    5 Clutch reviews
Tell us about your project
NEED HELP SELECTING A COMPANY?

Based on your budget, timeline, and specifications we can help you build a shortlist of companies that perfectly matches your project needs. Schedule a free consultation with a Manifest Analyst.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR PROJECT