User Onboarding

A powerful way to increase user retention and satisfaction is having a dynamic user onboarding strategy.  You’ve seen those apps where you create an account and then the app walks you thru a series of steps to help you familiarize yourself with the app.  Duolingo and Justinmind are just two examples of good user on boarding experiences.

For your app, you’ll want to think about what type of user onboarding you’ll want to implement.  While you don’t need to implement a full-featured user onboarding experience for your MVP, you should be thinking about it and perhaps create some mockups.  Here are some user onboarding ideas to consider for your app

Welcome email

When a user creates an account and logs in, sending them a Welcome email which includes some “first time user” pointers on how to initially use your app.  SendGrid sends a nice Welcome email and includes a button which brings new users to a getting started “Checklist”.  If your MVP requires a user to create an account to login, a basic Welcome email is easy to implement.  Bubble has integrated email capabilities making it very easy to create and send customized emails to users – automatically as part of a workflow.

Video Tutorial

Creating a video tutorial that walks users thru your app is also easy to create.  If you’re familiar with the “Tell-Show-Do” approach to teaching, a video tutorial is a “Show”.  There are lots of tools available (some for free) to create a video right from your laptop.  For instance, Quicktime has a built in “Screen recording” capability allowing you to walk thru your app explaining the different features.  As with the Welcome email, you may want to consider creating some videos to help users navigate thru your app.  Video is an extremely powerful way to help users learn how your app works.  Sites like YouTube and Vimeo allow you to upload your videos so you can share them.  Bubble has built in capabilities which make sharing YouTube or Vimeo videos a snap.  Here’s an example of a Video Tutorial from Bubble.

Interactive Lessons

Following on with the Tell-Show-Do approach, Interactive Lessons are a “Do”.  This is a more sophisticated teaching tool which you’ll probably want to focus on once your app is more stable (i.e. further along than MVP – perhaps Beta or full launch).  Within Bubble, you can create Interactive Lessons however they will require a bit more work on your behalf to keep the users on track and “out of trouble”; you want your users to have a successful experience.  Here’s an example of an Interactive Lesson from Bubble.


Another way to create a good user onboarding experience is to allow users to customize or personalize their account.  Quora, Pinterest and Medium all provide good examples as users need to define what areas interest them.  If your app provides lots of diverse content or selections (i.e. a news/data aggregator, an ecommerce site, etc) then allowing your users to customize the content they see will help your users experience.

There a lots of different ways to help your users onboard to your app and this blogpost provides just a few samples.  Helping users feel welcomed and reducing the time for them to get value out of your app is very important because there are so many things competing for their time.

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