A muted question which we often find our customers asking is – OK, Where do I begin with user onboarding? So today we’ll try to help answer this question.
Map a Customer Journey
To quote Samuel Hulick of UserOnboard: You don’t acquire users, they acquire you. Your users are searching for a solution to a problem, which your product or service will ultimately help them acheive. To find you they will go through a journey. This journey may begin with a search engine query, conversation with a friend or something they read in a news article or a blog post like this one. Somewhere along that journey they will land on your page.
Begin by analyzing and mapping a typical journey for your target customer. Ask yourself: How do people find my product and what expectations they may already have coming to my page? Then create a step-by-step visual guide of the screens your users will see and actions they can take on your page. This way you can figure out how to structure your onboarding as you seek to communicate the value of your product.
Guide to Value
The real value and goal of customer onboarding is customer success. Hence, the function of customer onboarding is getting your visitors to success by using your product. With your user journey map in hand build your guidance around value points of your product. Introduce the core value and help new sign up achieve first win with your product.
This small victory will establish a foundation of trust in the product, which you can build on by introducing recurring value from using the product, getting users to adopt new functionality and strengthening the relationship to the point where existing customers can recommend you to others.
Test and Communicate
When it comes to usability design nothing is carved in stone. Every product is unique and caters to its special group of customers, and this may require finding your unique interaction design approach. Build your onboarding process and test it for optimal result. You may not get it completely right the first time, but mistakes are a proof that you’re trying and success is just around the corner.
Finally, talk to your customers. Honest feedback is the best research you can have. Monitor their progress and ask them about their experience, frustrations and thoughts. More often you will find that people can’t tell how they want things to be done, but they will for sure be able to tell you what they don’t like. Capture this feedback and iterate.