Custom Network: Create a Network


At a Glance

Custom Network allows you to invite anyone to join networks for tests you want to launch. This article explains the steps to follow when creating a Custom Network.


Custom Network is available on the following subscriptions:

Flex plan Seat-based plan
Essentials Startup
Advanced  Professional
Ultimate Premium


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Before you can use your networks, you have to create them. There are three steps to creating a network with Custom Network:

  1. Create the network and add a logo.
  2. Create a profile form for people to enter their information.
  3. Invite people to join the network.

Let’s look first at the profile form itself, then how to build a profile form, and finally, how to create a test with the networks you create in Custom Network.

Understanding the Profile Form Builder

The profile form builder lets you add questions for people to answer when they join your network. These questions are called attribute types. You can also specify the format of answers to the questions. For example, you might ask people to provide their favorite color and restrict answers to 15 characters.

Here are the attribute types you can add to your profile form:

  • Textbox People enter anything—limited to 170 characters.
  • Single Select People select only one item from a list.
  • Multiselect People select one or more items from a list.
  • Whole Number People enter positive whole numbers.
  • Decimal People enter positive numbers with decimals.


As you add attributes to the form, you enter a question. Next, give the question a filter name so you can select it when you create tests.
Note: There is no filter name for the freeform Textbox attribute. You can see people’s answers when you look at their profiles, but you can’t filter by Textbox answers. For Single Select and Multiselect, you add the answer options that people select.

You can request personally identifiable information (PII) for each attribute you add to the profile form. If you have a BAA signed with UserTesting, you can also request certain Protected Health Information (PHI).

Once added to the form, attributes get an Options menu (…).

  • Choose Show Options to include PII in the network data checkbox. Choose Show Options again to hide the checkbox without deselecting it.
  • Choose Duplicate to make a copy of the attribute with all the information you added.
  • Choose Delete to delete the attribute.

All questions must be answered, so make sure you provide an option people can select when none of the answers for single select or multi-select questions apply to them, such as a 0 or N/A.

Please note: Anyone with the URL can join your Custom Network.

Understanding PII for Custom Network

When you create a network, you can set the network’s PII status by selecting Include PII in network data. This lets anyone on your account with access see PII when looking at a profile. PII and email addresses are also included when you export a network. There are some restrictions on the personal information you can collect. You should never collect:

  • PII provided by minors who are 17 and younger
  • Credit card numbers
  • Personal financial account numbers
  • Driver's licenses, social security numbers, passport numbers, or other government-issued documentation
  • Specific genetic information
  • Health plan beneficiary numbers
  • Account numbers

When asking for sensitive PII, it is recommended that contributors be advised in the invitation email that any personal or health information will be collected so that they can decide to opt-in or out. Always check with your internal policies and applicable data laws before collecting this information. Examples include:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Home Address
  • Phone number
  • Basic demographic information
  • Medical information, including treatment or health history (only if you have a BAA signed with UserTesting)

Note: Categories of PII data vary by jurisdiction. Please review our Data Processing Agreement, Content Policy, and Privacy Policy for more information.

Important: Once someone joins a network, you cannot go back and change the PII status to hide PII or exclude it from exports.

For each question you add to the profile form, you can select This is PII. To comply with GDPR or CCPA, you need to select This is PII for each question requesting PII. This protects any PII people provide in their answers, such as names or phone numbers.

If you did not set the network’s status to Include PII in network data, no one can see it. We store all PII in a secure way and delete it when you delete a person from a network or when a person asks to be forgotten.

Let’s see how all this comes together by creating a network and building an actual profile form.

Creating the Network

  1. From the dashboard, Contributor networks from the navigation panel.
  2. Select the Custom Network tab, then click Create network.Screen_Shot_2022-07-07_at_1.48.20_PM.pnga. Network Name: Enter a name for your network.
    b. Internal Name: If your team or account refers to the network by another name or a name you don’t want contributors to see, enter it here.
    c. Company Name: Enter the company name.
    d. If you want everyone on the account to see PII and include it in network exports, select Include PII in network data.
    e. If you don’t intend to pay contributors, select Turn off contributor payments.
    f. Custom Branding: After creating your network, you can include your logo on the branded landing page and emails to contributors by dragging the logo file to the drag area. Note: the minimum logo size is 64px X 64px, but we recommend a 100px X 100px logo to be centered better.
  3. Click Create.


Building the Profile Form

  1. Click the name of the network you created, then click the Attributes tab.
  2. Drag attribute types to the left to build the profile form. Explanations of the attribute types are above in “Understanding the Profile Form.”
  3. When you are done, click Save.
  4. Click Get Link.
  5. Click Copy Link.

This provides a link that you can send to the people you want to join your network. If you need to copy the link again later, choose Invite from the network’s Options menu (…), then choose Copy Link

Using Referral Codes

Add another dimension to filter your tests with referral codes. Use referral codes to invite people from different social platforms, or people who attended a conference, or fans in a loyalty program, and more. When you launch a test, you can select people based on the referral code they used to join a network.

To use referral codes:

  1. Choose Invite from the Options menu and click Copy Link.
  2. Paste the link into a text editor, such as Notepad on Windows, or TextEdit on macOS. Invitation links always end with /join:
  3. Type ?RID= at the end of the link, followed by a referral code:
  4. Email the invitation link with the referral code to anyone you want to join.

When you’re ready to launch a test, select Referral Code from the list of filters in the sidebar, then select a referral code to include the people who signed up with that referral code.


Once some people complete their profiles, you’re ready to launch tests to your new network.

For Contributor Support, visit the Custom Network Support center


Learn More

Need more information? Read these related articles.

Want to learn more about this topic? Check out our University course.

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