After making a revised onboarding circulate for a fintech app, my design group had simply three days to check and fine-tune it for our shopper. As a result of we didn’t have sufficient time to assemble consumer suggestions, I wanted one other option to shortly refine the circulate and show its influence.
I developed an evaluation methodology to streamline the onboarding steps and quantify how a lot easier that they had change into. Once I offered the up to date circulate to the shopper, they authorised our design, and we instantly applied the adjustments.
Since then, I’ve used the identical method to strengthen present consumer flows for extra shoppers. It’s a easy methodology that saves time, improves usability, and reveals the effectiveness of your design selections to stakeholders.
Consumer Circulate Evaluation in 4 Steps
Consumer flows map out the trail a consumer should take to finish a job, corresponding to onboarding, subscribing, and checkout. Designers might make consumer flows in the course of the product improvement course of or as a part of common UX evaluation after a product has launched (particularly when updates and new options are applied).
A product’s consumer circulate is vital to UX, and it must be used alongside consumer analysis and consumer path analytics. The Interplay Design Basis underscores its significance: “The higher you facilitate the consumer shifting from begin to end on a specific course of—the simpler the product is to work with and the extra seemingly that you’re to ship an superior consumer expertise.”
Any designer or design group can make use of this four-step circulate evaluation to improve UX and assist customers full duties that help enterprise objectives. As an example, I’ll apply the method to an app onboarding instance.
Map the Present Course of
Step one is to look at the consumer path by noting every motion required to finish the duty, corresponding to gestures, face scans, or viewing updates like snackbars. Right here’s the onboarding circulate instance labeled with every step the consumer takes. On this case, the circulate makes use of 5 actions: wait, scroll, faucet, kind, and comply with an exterior hyperlink. Whether or not you create a digital consumer circulate or a bodily one with boards and sticky notes, it’s useful to position the motion labels close to the associated screens (or display screen representations) to visualise the steps.
This instance circulate entails many steps throughout a number of screens, and it’s clear that it must be streamlined. However the variety of actions isn’t the one measure of how demanding a course of is for the consumer. Some steps are extra taxing than others. For instance, it takes extra bodily effort to kind than to faucet. To guage the consumer circulate, we’d like a option to quantify every motion.
Rank Actions by Complexity
The following step is to think about the time and psychological or bodily effort every step requires. For instance, deciding between two choices calls for psychological vitality, even for seemingly small selections. However, typing takes bodily effort (significantly on cell). Different actions might solely take psychological effort with no bodily motion, corresponding to ready for a snackbar to vanish. The mixed psychological and bodily effort that customers should take to succeed in their objectives is the interplay value.
I like to recommend creating a easy hierarchy for the actions in your consumer circulate, from best to hardest. Figuring out an motion’s issue is just like ranking the severity of usability points: As a result of subjectivity is concerned, you want constant standards (on this case, time and psychological and bodily effort) when evaluating the actions in opposition to each other. (When you’ve got the chance, observe customers working with the prototype to assist affirm your rankings.)
Subsequent, assign every motion a coloration and some extent worth. I favor crimson for probably the most difficult and grey for the best. The tougher an motion is to finish, the upper its level worth must be. Right here’s how I broke down the actions in our consumer circulate instance:
There could also be variable complexity even with the identical exercise. Scrolling will normally be a easy job, however what if a consumer is scrolling to learn a sophisticated authorized doc? In that case, you can create a label that displays the complexity higher, corresponding to Learn.
In case you’re working with a group in particular person, attempt placing the screens up on a board and utilizing colourful sticky notes for the motion labels. This can be a enjoyable option to visualize the consumer circulate as a gaggle and see the method from a brand new perspective. For distant collaboration, attempt on-line whiteboard instruments like FigJam or Miro.
When you’ve labeled every motion, multiply its assigned worth by the variety of occasions it seems within the circulate. You’ll be able to then add the factors for every motion collectively to create what I name an “effort whole.” (We’ll speak extra about what this quantity means later after we measure influence.)
Streamline the Consumer Circulate
When you’ve calculated a baseline effort whole, return by the consumer circulate and determine locations you might be able to mix or simplfy steps. Give attention to lowering the variety of actions or changing complicated actions with easier ones. As an example, you may usually scale back tapping by combining screens. That stated, it’s finest to not merge screens that include complicated info. For instance, customers might get overwhelmed if in case you have cost and consumer info fields on the identical display screen. That’s why it’s higher to goal to lower complexity reasonably than concentrate on lowering the variety of screens.
It’s also possible to incorporate automation to ease the consumer’s burden. As an example, an app may routinely fill in a safety code despatched by way of textual content or detect the consumer’s nation in order that they don’t must kind it.
In our consumer circulate instance, screens two by 5 are advertising and marketing microcopy and a welcome message. There’s no want to make use of a number of screens for that info, so we are able to mix them. You may additionally make the keyboard routinely open each time there’s a display screen with an enter area so the consumer doesn’t need to faucet earlier than typing. Some enter fields could be mixed into one display screen, such because the username and e mail deal with. Whereas not relevant in our instance, one other option to make onboarding extra environment friendly is to incorporate superior options, corresponding to permitting customers to scan cost playing cards as an alternative of typing the credentials.
Decreasing this circulate from 15 screens to seven makes it simpler for the consumer to finish the important job of account setup. Most apps don’t want in depth onboarding processes or explanations. As a substitute, it’s finest to maintain onboarding temporary and centered on vital steps.
It’s possible you’ll must show to your shopper or different stakeholders that the streamlined consumer circulate you’ve created is value implementing. For instance, the shopper could possibly be hesitant to take away onboarding screens that showcase the app’s many options. In case you obtain pushback in your proposed adjustments, it’s finest to help your case with numbers. Spotlight the variety of customers who go away the app earlier than finishing onboarding, or who obtain the app and don’t use it once more. It’s also possible to share examples of apps which have extra seamless onboarding flows with the shopper to show the distinction in expertise.
Even additional, with this consumer circulate evaluation methodology you may quantify the influence of the improved circulate. To do that, calculate the entire effort rating of the brand new model, and examine it to the unique rating.
Realizing the trouble scores of each consumer flows, we are able to quantify a change in usability between the 2 variations and use the end result to help our design selections to stakeholders. To take action, merely divide the distinction between the brand new and authentic flows (29 factors) by the primary rating (78 factors) and multiply by 100. Within the case of our instance, the brand new onboarding circulate is 37% easier than the unique.
I wish to share the adjustments with shoppers in a presentation to underscore the influence of the updates and the logic behind eradicating actions or steps. Testing the circulate with a number of customers can assist you validate the outcomes of the design course of. If wanted, you may repeat all 4 steps to additional streamline the circulate.
A Extra Environment friendly Product Improvement Course of
After utilizing this methodology, affirm that the circulate equips customers to efficiently navigate the product and obtain their objectives by gathering suggestions. As well as, analytics will present the place customers go away the product or fail to finish a job and any adjustments within the bounce price as a result of updates. With the fintech app I first tried this system on, we decided by qualitative testing that customers had been happy with the brand new onboarding course of and didn’t expertise interruptions when the product was up to date.
I’ve discovered that this four-step consumer circulate evaluation method is a fast, efficient manner to enhance UX and maximize effectivity within the product improvement course of. Use it to simplify duties for customers and to quantify the influence of your design selections.