Hmmm, Cool New App — Should I Bother With It?

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You’ve most likely asked yourself a similar question before signing up for a new web or mobile app. You may have been excited about the promise of what the app could do for you, but you still had to decide: should I bother? Do I want or care enough to invest my time, attention, effort, or money?

According to Lean UX expert Laura Klein, the “Should I Bother?” question highlights one of the biggest blocks to converting users to the next level in a product. Depending on the product and the user’s current level of interaction with it, the next level could mean: signing up for a service, returning regularly, or converting into a paying customer.

In her webcast, “The Three Reasons Users Don’t Convert,” Laura explains the major issues that prevent users from converting to the next level within a product. She briefly covers the Lean UX testing methodologies that can be used to solve each issue. Her book, UX for Lean Startups, is a great resource for expanding on those methods.

Users Don’t Get the Product

People spend very little time checking out a new product before deciding whether or not to use it, so it’s important to test the main messaging of the product to ensure that people get it. Testing methodologies:

  • Five second tests
  • Guerrilla usability testing
  • Site intercept

Outcome: adjust and clarify the product messaging as needed so people can quickly grasp what it does.

Users Don’t Need the Product

The product may be solving a problem, but not one that the target users actually have. Testing methodologies:

  • Contextual inquiry
  • Observational testing
  • Customer development

Outcome: clearly understand a specific group of people’s context and issues, and then ensure that the product solves their unique problems.

Users Don’t Want It Enough

This brings us back to the first idea; the user might understand what a product does and see its value, but does she care enough? Is it worth investing precious time, attention, effort, or money? Will it be more trouble than it’s worth? Testing methodologies:

  • Usability testing
  • Pre-build commitment
  • Price optimization

Outcome: ensure that the product solves a big enough problem and has the right price point to match customer needs and goals.

By addressing these common issues around customer conversion, companies can build better products that more effectively meet people’s needs.