Customer success

How UserTesting revolutionized onboarding and engagement with Pendo

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29% increase in usage of key features

Designed contextual, in-app onboarding

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A good first impression means everything, right? Well, yes, but when we’re talking about people using your software, it’s important that you make a lasting impression, too. 

This was top of mind for Ashley Papagno, the product manager on UserTesting’s customer engagement team. Ashley and her team knew that an efficient, seamless onboarding process is a key driver of long-term user retention. They also determined that delivering ongoing, contextual help in their app was equally important. 

“We have a world-class onboarding program, but not every detail and best practice communicated can be remembered,” Papagno said. “Leveraging the UserTesting platform, we heard the feedback that we needed onboarding in the context of our product.”

The first third-party solution they tried to use was buggy, hard to use, and not well adopted throughout the organization. So, the team brought in Pendo. Pendo’s analytics and in-app messaging offered an integrated solution that supercharged UserTesting’s onboarding. With Pendo, codeless analytics were available to anyone on the team in real-time, and building and deploying guides or multi-step walkthroughs required little to no help from development or engineering.

Automated, contextual onboarding

The previous iteration of the team’s in-app onboarding was a simple, five-step welcome guide. Users rarely made it past step two, and many didn’t return to the product. Pendo has allowed the team to completely rethink how they approach onboarding, turning a one-and-done event into an ongoing relationship with the user.

Using Pendo, the team was able to identify the exact point in the flow where users were dropping off: 99% of users invited to the software were creating accounts and logging in, but many were not beginning to draft a test. This is the first step to collecting valuable human insights with  UserTesting, and engaging with this feature is a key moment that the team knew led first-time visitors to become long-term users.

So, the team embarked on a comprehensive problem discovery process to gather customer insights in the onboarding journey. The UserTesting Human Insight Platform enabled the team to understand the “why,” through a My Recruit unmoderated study targeting UserTesting customers in context to hear their current Jobs To Be Done and any points of confusion. They then used Pendo to design a key piece of an onboarding solution, quickly bringing understanding of the platform via an introductory video all the way through the crucial moment of creating a test. Once the user had begun using the feature, they offered in-app walkthroughs through Pendo guides that were personalized based on the user’s level of experience.

If a user logs onto the platform and begins drafting tests from scratch, the team knows that they’re more experienced users, versus those that opt to use a feature that assists them with creating a test, which happens with new or less experienced users.  Each of these groups is served a different set of in-app guides: The veteran researcher gets less guidance and more tips on advanced features they may want to use, while the less experienced researcher is served multi-step guides to walk them through the basics like writing great screener questions and tasks:

UserTesting used in-app guides to onboard users.

UserTesting used Pendo in-app guides to onboard users.
Examples of tooltips using Pendo in-app guides in UserTesting’s platform.

Since rolling out their new Pendo-powered onboarding and in-app guidance, Papagno said, there’s been a 29% increase in users who make it to the “Draft Test” stage and successfully activate the product.

An ongoing relationship with the user

Onboarding isn’t the only place UserTesting’s product team is leveraging Pendo. They’re also working to increase feature adoption and usage, collect valuable user feedback, and boost retention.

Recently, the team has begun using Pendo to drive adoption of newly released features and parts of the platform that users are unaware of but may find useful. When usage data reveals underused key features, in-product guides help educate users about their function and how to use them.

For example, when the team was revamping the platform’s Share feature, Papagno wanted to understand how useful a certain text box in the feature was and whether it should be removed. Pendo data showed that few people were discovering the feature, but of those that did, 90% continued to use it regularly. They kept the box, redesigned the experience, and used Pendo in-app messaging to direct users towards it to drive adoption. “Pendo gave us a way to really point eyeballs,” she said.

UserTesting revamped their Share In feature using Pendo.
UserTesting used Pendo analytics to help revamp their Share In feature, then used Pendo in-app messaging to promote the newly redesigned feature.

The product team is also using Pendo in-app surveys to collect feedback while users are actively working in the product, rather than reconstructing their experience after the fact. This means users have their needs and concerns top of mind when providing feedback. The data collected supplements the qualitative feedback captured through UserTesting.

“We often ask customers to explain their current ‘job to be done’ on the page to get real-time feedback; this helps shape our product strategy,” said Papagno.

When new features launch, multi-step guides are used to take users through their use, and the team has even been able to get certain features to market quicker by using Pendo guides to fill in UX gaps that have yet to be addressed by the engineering team.

“We’re able to get the features out there and collect really early feedback to be able to roll out a V2,” Papagno said. Pendo helps UserTesting achieve their vision of bringing real human insight into any business decision by empowering teams to collect and share actionable customer insights.

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