How to Onboards New Users?

Saad Khan
User Onboarding Tips

What sets the initial impression of a user’s experience is the onboarding. If the initial interaction is pleasant, chances of a user performing the action you want them to are higher, otherwise, it usually leads to a drop-off. In this article, we will discuss the different ways you can onboard a user and some tips to keep in mind when designing the user experience.

With a lot of focus on the UX, getting a user onboard pleasantly on the application has become increasingly important. Depending on the nature of your product, you choose the best onboarding strategy. Following are three ways you may consider when onboarding a user to your application:

1) Collecting information to show value

Sign Up First User Onboarding

Each one of you so far must have experienced an application that asks you to sign up before experiencing how it would enrich your lives. This approach works generally well when apps become renowned. If the application is fairly new, this often leads to a huge drop off rate.

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However, applications do differ in nature. Some applications may be profile based, asking you to provide information upfront. For apps of this kind, initial signup process is essential.

2) Showing value first before asking any information

Showing value first User Onboarding

To educate a first time user, you need to work hard on ‘activation’. So what exactly is activation? It’s the process of getting a new user to a must have experience. Activation helps new users to understand your product’s value now instead of later.

This approach tends to work great for newly developed apps who are looking to grow their user base exponentially. For example, you must have seen many photo editing applications that let you edit the pictures without asking too many personal details. They allow you to complete your journey on the app, see how it will help you, and at the last moment they ask you for a simple information.

3) Onboarding a user during a conversation

Conversation based User Onboarding

Recently, the trends are also shifting towards signing up a user during a customer support on a website. You may discuss the features of the application with a support representative who shall ask you general information such as your name and email along the course of your conversation, and voila! They sign you up on their application, which saves you from the pain of doing so yourself.

4 tips to improve user onboarding

Once a user has landed on your application, it is essential to keep things focused and simple. Here are some tips to improve the journey of a first-time user:

Keep it easy

First time users may require guidance, but not excessive information to confuse them. Start with your value proposition and take a user onto basic functionality of the application from there onwards.

Simple signup process

To get a user into providing you some information, the signup process has to be as pain-free as possible. Try to implement a one-click sign up process if you are asking for information at some point of the user journey. You can also consider linking the form with Google, Facebook, or Twitter to further simplify this step.

Show rather than telling

Snapchat and Instagram are perfect examples when it comes to showing a first-time user how to use the application rather than a set of instructions telling just to do so. If you blend instructions with actions, a user will be able to understand the functionality quickly.

Educate users as they continue to use

There is no need to provide all information to a new user about your application upfront. Like we mentioned earlier, start with your value proposition. You can educate users about some features from time to time, and always allow them to skip the process. This may include, for example, what action a less prominent button on the app performs to be shown to a user after the first journey.

Wrap up

Onboarding is a process which not everyone gets right from day one. It requires you to listen to your users, by performing tests and analysis, to determine what strategy would be best to onboard your users most effectively. Depending on the nature of your product, you may decide which approaches to test, but do not forget the tips of introducing a first-time user to your application; as first impressions are the most lasting.

Enjoyed reading? Now check out how user experience can affect your brand. and let us know your thoughts by tweeting us @cygnismedia

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