We’ve previously talked about how market research shapes the user experience, but now we want to take it a step further and understand how that factors into increased engagement among technology users— the whole purpose for improving the user experience. Engagement can mean a variety of things depending on what we’re talking about engaging with. User engagement, in the context of technology, is the evaluation of a user’s interactions with the product. More importantly, it’s the ability to take a user from using your product or service for the first time to increasing or maintaining their usage over time. Strong user engagement is important for a number of reasons:
- Increases the likelihood users will use or buy additional products
- Drives brand loyalty and word-of-mouth marketing to acquire new users
- Develops a better understanding of what customers to target and how
With reasons like above, there’s no excuse foregoing a look at how market research can help increase user engagement.
1. Can Determine Who the Users Are
Before metrics for user engagement can even be determined, market research helps to identify the users themselves. It wouldn’t make sense to try and determine a user engagement score without first making sure you’re evaluating the right users. Besides, gaining a better understanding of users also makes it easier to draw the lines between cause and effect when it comes to their actions. For example, certain users may only interact with a single product feature, knowing who those users are and the qualities they share can help to determine how to target and message to those users.
2. Can Evaluate What’s Most Important to the User
While market research can’t always pinpoint how to approach a user engagement strategy, it can help determine what aspects are most important to users by taking a look at the user’s journey. A user’s journey consists of the touch-points they’ve had with a product, how they felt during those moments, and the actions they’ve taken as a result— this can be difficult to capture because each journey is often different for each user. However, market research can help to quantify the most common and important aspects of the user journey and why it’s important. So while many technologies have an ability to capture parts of the user journey from the back end, validating those outcomes with consumers, discerning why actions are taken, and understanding how the user feels at those points is important to justifying and ensuring the user engagement strategy is strong.
3. Can Refine and Improve
Last, but not least, market research helps to refine and improve the user engagement strategy by identifying the areas product managers should or shouldn’t revisit. Testing any updates or improvements to the product against the target users helps to evaluate the potential impact on engagement before it’s too late. Incorporating user feedback both early and often when it comes to product changes means strong user engagement is likely. Over time user engagement will increase the lifetime of the customer and brands can spend more time on new innovation or acquisition efforts— rather than appeasing current customers.
To learn more about how to incorporate user insights and increase user engagement with technology throughout product development in an agile and iterative way, check out our eBook below. It provides a look at how to gather quality user feedback at every step of product development.