How To Put Yourself In The Shoes Of A New User Over And Over Again

new user

The user experience (UX) of Sendtask is what makes or breaks us. If we succeed in building a good product, we create an experience that is fun, friendly and self-explanatory. Most important are the first few steps a new user takes in our app. In today’s day and age, people don’t spend minutes on trying new apps and products – they spend seconds. This is why the new user experience is extremely important.

It is easy to get distanced from this experience once you are a frequent user – or even a developer or designer on our team. Everything becomes familiar and it is difficult to see what’s self-explanatory and what’s not. Once we realized this, we built a system that helps us put ourselves into the shoes of a new user over and over again to remind us of these critical first few steps.

We do this in two exercises: onboarding feedback during our weekly call and group user feedback call during our retreats.

Onboarding feedback during our weekly call

Part of our weekly call is one person speaking about the best three things and the worst three things in a new user’s experience. Prior to the call, they ask a friend or other new user to go through the sign-up and onboarding process of Sendtask and then learn about their experience.

On one side, this is important because it forces this team member to dive deep with a new user and their experience with the product. On the other side, our team member might work on something that has little or no influence on the experience a new user goes through and we think that it is important that everyone knows about this crucial topic and learns about how well we’re currently doing first hand.

Group User Feedback Call

We schedule a call with one of our users (or groups of users in the case of companies) during the retreat and the whole team participates in the call. This is typically a longer call of about 45 minutes and covers more than just the onboarding experience.

We use this call to understand:

  • How the user found Sendtask
  • What they use it for
  • What works well for them
  • Which features they are missing
  • What was confusing
  • What was clear and straightforward

It’s been best for us to ask open-ended questions and let the users talk. Their feedback is worth gold and often answers very clearly what to focus on and how to prioritize our feature pipeline.

We also use the call to show them some hidden features. «Hidden» not because these features are actually hidden, but because our documentation is way behind and we know we can do a much better job at explaining the complete feature set of Sendtask.

Conclusions

These are two elements we use to put us in the shoes of new users and to become conscious of the things we’re doing well and the things we’re not doing so well yet.

What processes do you use to make sure you get an unfiltered view of your user experience?

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