The prosaic answer is: You won't avoid it anyway. The actual launch of a product is one big (involuntary) test. And so it may easily turn into the most expensive feedback of your life. Once the product is launched, you have little opportunity to change anything quickly and without bleeding money. If the product is not meeting user expectations or solving their problem, utter failure is probably the most telling indicator. It sounds like a valid reason to organize user testing, doesn't it? You can easily conduct it on a prototype built for a fraction of the implementation cost before you start the development.
Yet user testing is often a completely neglected discipline of product development or is given the lowest priority. This is usually due to a lack of time, resources, but also an overly strong, biased, and not data-driven belief in the product and its success. At Applifting, testing is almost the daily bread and butter of our UX team. That's why, based on our experience, we've taken the liberty to boldly prepare a list of the most important reasons to convince you to organize user testing.
You will save a lot of money
If there's a really strong argument for conducting user testing, it's money. But it is also the most common excuse to skip this method. Most naysayers argue that it won't give them anything tangible like it does in development. That's true, but the real benefit is knowing that you are actually creating a desirable product that will be profitable. At the same time, you will save a lot of money by not having to constantly redo a launched finished product over and over again. Besides, if you have a sufficiently fine-tuned product, users will not overwhelm your support team with their cranky questions and complaints. On the contrary, if the product is user-friendly and desirable in their eyes, then people won't be reluctant to spend money on it.
You'll know your users better
A common phenomenon we encounter in practice is the very naive idea that we know everything there is to know about our potential users. Few people undertake even the most basic market research, user interviews, or any other auspicious activities that should be carried out before development, but even this is usually not enough. Things can't be created in a vacuum--the user perspective needs to be continually involved in product development. Having the future user confront the creation of the product through testing is one useful tool to achieve this. Sometimes, you will get confirmation of your existing hypotheses about users' thinking and decision-making; sometimes, you will be literally shocked to find out that the user is not practising what you were so firmly convinced of.
You'll find the trouble spots
Identifying and correcting problematic features of your product is one of the elementary parts of product development. But finding bottlenecks is not easy. Let your users do this job. Go through key features, processes, and interactions with them as you test. You'll probably already get a rough idea of where the blind spots are during development, and that will give you a hint of what to focus on during testing. You'll find out what parts of your design frustrate users, what they don't understand, and what deters them from converting or buying. If multiple usability comments or misunderstandings from different users pop up in the same place, it naturally means it needs fixing.