Animation for the sake of “cool” can often hurt conversions since it’s distracting, but not always. There are 4 ways animation, when used properly, can actually strengthen UX. And better user experience can lead to higher conversions.
Do you have a product? With users?
If you answered “yes” to both of those questions, you have an amazing untapped source for product research. And I’m not talking about your users.
I mean, sure, you should be listening to users and observing them. A lot. But there’s another group of people who can provide you with incredible insights into your product.
Look, don’t get me wrong. I fundamentally agree with a lot of the thoughts behind the annoying catchphrase “mobile first.” For example, I agree that mobile devices are now the primary (if not only) mode of connecting for many markets. I also think that having some sort of mobile strategy is absolutely required for every product.
Often, entrepreneurs ask me something to the effect of, “What’s the best way to let new users explore my product?”
My answer is almost always a variation of, “Stop it.” In order to be slightly more helpful, let’s look at why this is a terrible question.
Let me tell you the story of far too many startups. A few people have a brilliant idea. They go off and spend six months to a year building it. Then they launch it into the world and wait for the users and money to come pouring in.
I tend to go back and forth between being a consultant and working on a team. That’s why I cancelled my FreshBooks account. I was leaving consulting and no longer needed it.
If you’ve ever been a user experience designer, you’ve probably heard people say something like this when starting a new project:
We want to make it delightful and easy to use.
We need to do some user research.
We want to improve our onboarding process.
We think it needs a walkthrough for new users.
We want a persona/photoshop mockup/wireframe/landing page/insert deliverable here.
All of these statements are absolutely useless. Why? Because none of them help you decide what to work on or how to improve a product.
Today I’d like to talk about why that feature you’re building has taken twice as long to build as you thought it would and why it will be hard to use once you’ve shipped it. The problem is that you didn’t really think it through before you started coding.
You shouldn’t have to be a growth hacker to care about growing your product’s user base. Understanding growth is important for Product Managers, UX Designers, and Entrepreneurs, too.
I get a lot of questions about when companies should talk to users and when they should ship code and learn from their metrics. Of course, the real answer is that you should do both constantly, but there are times when one is significantly more helpful than the other.