Product Experience 101: How Can PMs Create Experiences Customers Love?
What’s product experience (PX)? Why does it matter? And most importantly, how do you create product experiences that delight your users?
These are the key questions that we discuss in the article. We also look at a few examples of companies delivering outstanding product experiences.
Let’s dive in!
- Product experience (PX) is the overall response that the product evokes in users when they interact with it.
- User experience (UX) refers to how easy it is for users to accomplish their goals inside the product.
- Product experience is affected by factors like usability and accessibility, user interface, product features, the platform it’s built on, and content strategy.
- Great product experiences lead to higher user engagement, increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, more revenue, reduced costs, and greater product-led growth.
- Product experiences are mainly the domain of the product teams.
- Personalized onboarding improves PX because it allows users to discover the relevant features in less time without being overloaded with unnecessary information.
- Contextual in-app messages give users the information they need at the time they need.
- Analyzing user behavior allows you to track the impact of product experience as well as identify ways to improve it on a granular level.
- Collecting feedback is essential to improve product experience because it helps you understand customer needs and user expectations.
- Iterative testing allows you to improve product experience incrementally. A/B testing, usability testing, or session replay analysis are examples of techniques you can use.
- Rocketbots delivers an outstanding PX by onboarding users with interactive walkthroughs.
- Loom uses contextual in-app prompts to drive upsells.
- Slack collects user feedback with in-app surveys to inform PX improvements.
- Userpilot allows you to collect user feedback, analyze in-app user behavior, and drive engagement with targeted contextual in-app messages.
- To see how you can enhance your product experience with these features, book the demo!
What is product experience (PX)?
In short, product experience describes what your users are feeling when they’re interacting with your product.
What affects the quality of PX? Some of the factors include:
- Usability and accessibility
- User interface
- Features and functionality
- The platform it’s built on
- Information architecture
- Content strategy
User experience vs product experience
Both user and product experience are related to user sentiment and satisfaction with the product. However, they differ in scope.
Product experience is the holistic experience that the user has inside the product. It’s made up of the UX and the emotional and perceptual responses that it produces.
And if you’re wondering how customer experience fits into that, it’s even broader. Apart from the product itself, it’s shaped by factors like marketing, ease of purchase, or the quality of customer support.
Why is it important to create a great product experience?
There are a number of reasons why it’s worth investing in creating quality product experiences for your users.
- Higher user engagement: when the product is easy and fun to use, users are more likely to engage with it.
- Increased customer satisfaction: user can achieve their goals easily and in less time.
- Higher customer loyalty and retention: linked directly to engagement and satisfaction levels.
- Increased revenue: users who witness a good PX are more receptive to upsell messages. Also, higher retention means higher customer lifetime value.
- Lower customer acquisition costs: customers happy with the experience will promote the product for you, which is the foundation of product-led growth.
Who owns product experience?
The main responsibility for designing an outstanding product experience is on the product management team. It’s their job to build accessible and easy-to-use products that deliver value.
However, they can’t do this without the support of their colleagues across the organization. For example, customer success teams are responsible for personalizing the PX for different types of users, while customer support ensures users get all the support they need.
The elements of a great product experience
So how can you deliver a great product experience for your users? Here are a few must-have elements to remember.
Personalized user onboarding
Personalized user onboarding allows new users to discover the features that are relevant to their use cases without overwhelming them with unnecessary information.
With the right tools, it’s easy to design.
Start by collecting customer data through a welcome survey. Ask them about their goals and roles in their organizations and then segment your users based on their responses.
Assuming you’ve identified the features each of your user personas needs, design onboarding flows that will guide them through each of them.
Contextual in-app messages
When driving engagement with more complex or new features, use contextual in-app messages.
What are these?
Basically, they appear at the exact moment and place the user needs them. For example, if your user has just finished editing a video clip in your app, an in-app prompt, like a tooltip, could show them how to share it via their preferred channel, like YouTube.
Customer behavior data analysis
Product analytics are essential to delivering a great product experience for two reasons.
- Customer journey analysis allows you to understand user behavior at various touchpoints.
- Feature adoption analysis enables you to make data-driven decisions to refine your in-app messaging and onboarding strategy.
- Retention analysis gives you insights into the long-term impact of changes to the product experience.
- Milestone analysis gives you insights into where users experience friction and drop so that you can optimize their experience.
You can use Userpilot’s goals dashboard to set and track important milestones in the customer journey.
Customer feedback is the most direct way of obtaining information about user sentiment and satisfaction with the product experience.
The two most common survey types for this purpose include customer satisfaction CSAT surveys and Net Promoter Score (NPS) surveys.
CSAT surveys ask users to grade their experience on a scale while NPS surveys ask them how likely they’re to recommend it to their friends or colleagues.
To gain a deeper understanding of what users actually think about the PX, it’s best to follow them up with qualitative questions.
Continuous testing and improvement
In addition to tracking product usage and collecting user feedback, ongoing testing is necessary to improve the product experience.
What kinds of tests or experiments could you use to enhance product experience?
- A/B testing – enable one version of the product experience to half of your users while the other 50% experience another version. Then you watch which performs best.
- Usability testing – give a user a task to perform and watch how they do it. Then interview them about their experience.
- Session replays – use Hotjar or FullStory to record how users interact with the product and use these recordings to identify ways to improve the UI.
Best product experience example from successful SaaS companies
How do companies in the software industry implement these ideas in practice to deliver great product experiences for their users? Let’s check out a few examples.
Rocketbots interactive product walkthrough to educate new users
Rocketbots (now Respond.io) is a cloud-based multichannel communication platform that enables businesses to automate their customer interactions.
To onboard its new users, the company uses interactive walkthroughs.
They take users through the key features and contextually prompt them. Once the user completes a task, a new tooltip appears to introduce another feature.
The process continues until users have activated the most important functionality and are ready to start using the product independently.
Loom contextual message promoting a new feature
Loom is a well-known video messaging platform. It makes it easy to record and share short videos to communicate with your teammates and users.
Loom offers a free plan that allows users to perform the most basic tasks. However, there are limits. For example, the videos are capped at 5 minutes and some features are missing.
For example, when a user reaches the 5-minute limit, a prompt to upgrade appears. Another example is; when users finish recording a video, a modal gives them the option to upgrade so that they can automatically remove filler words to make their videos sound more professional.
Slack in-app survey to collect sentiment feedback
Slack is an instant messaging platform used by many SaaS teams.
To gauge user sentiment toward the product, Slack uses in-app surveys.
In this way, Slack can assess the overall sentiment as well as identify ways to improve its product experience.
Userpilot: The best tool for enhancing product experience in-app
Userpilot is a product adoption platform that you could leverage to design delightful product experiences for your users.
Here are the most relevant features:
- In-app surveys – to collect and analyze user feedback in-app. This also includes quantitative and qualitative NPS data.
- Goal tracking – for user journey and milestone analysis.
- Feature tagging and tracking – to assess feature adoption.
- Heatmaps – to identify ways to make your UI easier to navigate.
- Advanced user segmentation.
- UI onboarding patterns – tooltips, modals, banners, hotspots, etc. to drive product engagement and feature adoption.
- Event-based message triggering – for contextual in-app guidance and surveys.
- A/B testing: to run experiments on various onboarding flows.
A product experience that satisfies users and allows them to achieve their goals will improve overall customer satisfaction and loyalty and will drive product growth.
If you want to see how Userpilot can help you with that, book the demo!