Onboarding is the process of making sure that new users quickly learn how to use a certain interface and get used to it. In fact, onboarding shows how simple and easy to use the solution is, so that the people you want to use it understand that they will be able to reach their goals quickly and easily.
When do you need onboarding? When your website or app is different from what your users are used to, most of the time. Overall, this article is for you if you want to give your target audience a cool interface that makes them want to use your product again and again.
Rules for Onboarding
Onboarding is, in essence, the first time you meet a user. So, you’ll need to be as charming as you can (of course, in the context of interacting with the user through the interface). In other words, use as few words as possible to tell users what they need to know. And of course, try to be as funny and charming as you can. This works for digital products as well; just remember how Google Web Services acts.
So, what is the key to a good start? There are, in general, a few rules:
Beginners should always have the tools and knowledge they need to reach their goals; the onboarding process should be set up so that users are “pushed” to take the desired actions; onboarding should be divided into groups of users based on their demographic and geographic characteristics; UI/UX should be based on user feedback; and there should be as few steps as possible between the target action and its implementation.
Methods for Onboarding
The following suggestions can be made based on all of the above ideas.
1. Put together a short description of your product.
A product introduction is basically a demonstration of how your customers can use your product. Here, you should briefly describe the main features and how to use them. The goal is to make it less likely that your users will get confused by the features you already have and not finish what they set out to do. This “introduction” can be made with things like modals, slides, tooltips, and progress checklists.
2. Push your users to do specific things.
To get a user to do something, you need to know what event in the customer’s journey through your product makes them do something. You should also know when “familiarization” with the product turns into “active use.” This way, you can make it easy for both first-time users and people who use your product often to get started.
3. Segment user groups
You need to realize that each of your new users has different ideas about how your interface works and how to use it. Some of them may have dealt with analogs before, while others may not know how to do the thing they want to do. That’s why it’s so important to divide users into groups and give beginners a way to adjust (and spare the learning curve for those users who already know how to handle most of the features).
Customer research is the most important part of a good onboarding process. You don’t need to go with your gut here; it will be much better to use data from surveys, interviews, and focus group tests. At the same time, it’s very important to ask the right questions in order to get the most accurate picture of what features users like and dislike and how this can be fixed.
5. Cut down on the steps
Obviously, if there are too many steps to complete the goal action, people who don’t like to wait might not use your product again. Because of this, it makes sense to let people use more of your product’s features as they learn more about how it works.
Steps to Create a User Onboarding
Let’s look at the four main steps that go into making an onboarding:
Make sure the product is ready to be used.
Some products are hard for beginners to figure out at first. So, before showing off all of your product’s features, you should think about which ones your new users need to do specific tasks, and only then should you show them more of what it can do.
Where it makes sense, add new user interface elements
After getting feedback from users, you’ll be able to tell which parts of your product are hard to understand. So, you’ll get a full list of what new UI elements should be added to make things as easy to use as possible.
Direct your users
During the onboarding process, you’ll need to get new users interested in your product if you want them to stick with it. Analyze how new users move through the system and then suggest ways to make these features more useful later on (for example, after the trial is over);
Fix and test
No matter how well you design your onboarding, the key to its success is to keep improving it. That’s why it’s so important to test it often with different focus groups and improve it based on what they say.