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What is Product Experience and 10 Tips to Improve PX

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    Home / Product / What is Product Experience and 10 Tips to Improve PX

    I've spent the majority of my career as a product manager.

    And I can say with my chest that product experience is, should, and often must be the top priority of any product manager's agenda.

    And still, it's a tough task.

    You can make the product, but to experience the product is on the user sphere of the cycle.

    👉 And that experience is what leads to success.

    And so, to put an emphasis on just how much product experience matters, in this article, we'll go over:

    • What product experience is,
    • What the difference between user experience and product experience is,
    • Why product experience matters,
    • How you can start to improve product experience,
    •  A good example of an excellent product experience, and
    • Tools to get you started off on improving product experience 

    Don't have the time? Here's the TL;DR:

    TL;DR

    • Product experience (PX) should be a top priority for product managers, focusing on the in-app user journey.
    • PX is different from user experience (UX); specifically, the experience within the app that essentially impacts product and user adoption.
    • PX is vital for customer loyalty and reputation, influencing how users perceive and engage with the product.
    • Some best practices for PX are engaging onboarding, listening to feedback, educating users, maintaining consistent information, optimizing content, setting up early warning systems, and building trust, all contributing to customer satisfaction and retention.

    Let's get started right away ⬇️

    What is Product Experience?

    Product experience (PX) or in-app experience is the part of the user journey that takes place inside a product, mostly as a digital experience. Often used interchangeably, user experience and product experience, are, in fact, different concepts. Product experience, and especially digital product experience, is basically the part of user experience that happens in-app. So, even though they are not the same, a positive product experience can affect user experience positively as well.

    IGI Global defines Product Experience as:

    “The awareness of the psychological effects elicited by the interaction with a product, including the degree to which our senses are stimulated, the meanings and values we attach to the product, and the feelings and emotions that are elicited”.

    This definition can be simplified as a kind of perception the customers have as a result of their interaction with the product from the moment they log in until they stop using it. So we can say that anything that happens within the digital boundaries of the product is defined as product experience.

    What is the Difference Between Product Experience vs. User Experience?

    As we mentioned above, product experience is a part of the user experience for most products, and in a grander sense, both belong inside customer experience as a whole for most SaaS products.

     Apart from the fact that one is a piece of another, PX and UX differ in that:

    • Product experience happens in-app; user experience happens in-app, via email, website, and other media,
    • Product experience aims for product adoption; user experience aims for user adoption, and both serve to improve customer retention and adoption,
    • All users go through a product experience, but not all users using a product go through the full user experience (for example, your team admin receives the emails from a product, which is a part of user experience)
    • While product experience is almost entirely the product team's responsibility, user experience includes the contributions of sales, marketing, and support teams and, in some cases, other teams as well.

    There are more differences between UX and PX, but essentially all there is to understand the difference is, again, that PX is a part of UX.

    And why do we care so much about product experience? 👇👇👇

    Why is Product Experience Important?

    Here's the thing about PX: it's a big deal in user experience but doesn't always get the spotlight it deserves.

    There's no easy formula for perfect PX, but getting it right can make your business stand out and keep your customers coming back for more.

    👉 And on top of all that, SaaS is practically our world by now.

    Products aren't just things people use; they're part of our daily routines. They're where customers learn, discover, and really feel the value of what they've bought.

    👉 So, here's the straight talk: if your PX hits the mark, customers will love it.

    But if it's not quite there, they might start seeing your product as a bit of a hassle. And nobody wants that.

    The bottom line is, a great PX:

    • Keeps people using your product longer,
    • Builds loyalty, and
    • Pumps up your reputation.

    Paying attention to what customers are saying and tweaking your product to fit their needs isn't just a good idea – it's essential. Staying ahead in today's market means making every part of the product experience count.

    And that, folks, is why you gotta check out some of the best best practices for better product experiences. Let's get into it ⬇️

    what is product experience

    10 Best Practices & Tips to Improve Product Experience

    Improving product experience as a product owner is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity.

    Here are 10 tips for you to improve your product experience today:

    Tip #1: Make Onboarding Fun & Easy

    First up, time to be real.

    Do you think you’re doing enough in terms of onboarding new users efficiently?

    I’m going to assume you don’t because 9 out of 10 product managers/owners I meet don’t. And they do admit it.

    To understand the importance of user onboarding for a compelling product experience, you might wanna flashback to any time you've felt stranded when you found yourself in the dashboard of a product with no decent tutorial whatsoever.

    Not a very positive experience, huh?

    This feeling, generated by a product experience with no or poor onboarding, can result in customers becoming inactive, even leaving bad customer feedback and reviews, and worst case scenario, churn.

    No customer satisfaction or customer loyalty, and at one point, no customers.

    But we can fix that with one simple solution. Let me introduce you to an old friend of mine...

    Enhance Product Experience with the Right Product Adoption Platform 🚀

    Meet UserGuiding, the product adoption solution you need.

    UserGuiding is a product adoption platform with key product features like:

    👉 Product tours, walkthroughs, interactive guides,

    👉 Hotspots, tooltips, in-app messaging,

    👉 Gamified user onboarding checklists,

    👉 Resource centers,

    👉 In-app surveys,

    👉 Analytics, segmentation, targeting, and localization,

    And a lot more!

    Give it a try 👇

    Once you decide your approach to onboarding users, the rest is easy.

    You already have your product roadmap, product contents (your key features and user interface), and every possible valuable insight your user might need at hand. With that, it's easy enough to ease your entire customer journey in 3 steps:

    1. Design a user onboarding experience with interactive elements with customer touchpoints in mind,
    2. Add a touch of personalized experiences and gamification with checklists,
    3. Offer help where needed with resource centers and other help elements

    And you have a better, personalized product experience supported by a solid onboarding process. You're welcome!

    Tip #2: Listen & Monitor Effectively

    A good customer experience is a long conversation.

    And a good product experience is a substantial part of that conversation.

    And if you aren't listening carefully, it's really hard to meet customer expectations of your product.

    Fresh-faced startups are often rather compelling and endearing because they don’t have huge resources, teams, and the means to be cold and heartless data-driven machines. They need to get, well, up close and personal with their users and scale.

    Touching off from such a wholesome, pure, and social foundation projects them in the right direction.

    👉 So whatever stage you are in, it is important not to lose that sentiment.

    To be successful, this level of helpful, friendly, and genuine listening must translate into modern forms of monitoring:

    • How are you getting feedback from your users?
    • How much is personal vs. purely digital or automated?
    • Are your monitoring systems updated, or would calling them legacy be an understatement?

    Purely analytical data is powerful stuff, but it’s not the whole picture.

    SaaS users want to know they’re being monitored for better-personalized experiences.

    So it is your responsibility and a priceless best practice to listen to feedback from users, take action accordingly, and keep your product at least as good as it has been from the start. 

    Tip #3: Act on User Feedback

    Let’s assume your user monitoring systems fit like a glove.

    👉 The question is, are you effectively leveraging this information in ways that hit company goals while also increasing value for your customers?

    Startup SaaS companies don’t usually have the resources to run things through expensive corporate consultants, high-quality focus groups, research panels, double-blinds, etc.

    Do you feel like startups have months and months on end to get this figured out?

    For plenty of us, talking to people we’re looking to serve and provide value for isn’t technically or logistically hard. At least, it shouldn’t be.

    But taking that information and using it to potentially increase some aspects of PX can be a challenge.

    🚨 Extra Tip: What About Unsolicited Feedback?

    Do you know where your users are talking about your SaaS (and competitors) online that you aren’t in control of?

    Some examples include social media, forums, niche consumer watchdog platforms, the comment sections of large software-affiliate/review sites, or comment sections under video-based content in your industry.

    There are so many, because of how balkanized the internet has become.

    Today, it’s REALLY easy to lose sight of just how big it really is. Users aren’t all forthcoming. They aren’t all going to hand you the most groundbreaking feedback on a silver platter.

    Sometimes you’re going to have to go out and find it.

    No, not everything you need is one quick internet search away. Here and there, you may need to go beyond the first page of results in your searches.

    👉 Once you get this, LEVERAGE IT, and let your users know you go the extra mile to proverbially keep your finger on the pulse of their needs, values, and desires concerning your product.

    Tip #4: Educate Your Users

    Here are the 3 sides to this triangle:

    🔹 General Information Marketing 

    Now as we know, PX is the job of product teams. But content marketing isn't. 

    However, the VAST majority of your potential users are likely to find your product through education-based rather than sales-based content – blogs, articles, news releases, videos, and so on, that shows them how your solution is the solution to their need or problem.

    👉 So, for a better product experience in the endgame, starting out with informative content marketing is a valuable strategy.

    🔹Product Specific Education

    Again, while not always directly under pure product teams, a substantial percentage of overall user satisfaction (especially when you’ve got a more complex, high-ticket, high-value SaaS) comes from their ability to find the answers they need within the ecosphere of your content.

    👉 Popular options are branded ‘Academies,’ general knowledge bases, forum-based support within open-source approaches, and extensive FAQ sections.

    🔹New Features & Functions

    It is important to ensure users know how to get to and extract the value they want from your SaaS.

    You simply cannot reach any reasonable retention rate goals otherwise. Don’t just expect people ‘to get it’ or assume you’ve made the maze braindead-easy to navigate.

    👉 Users need to consistently see and experience the value of your product, or it will swiftly wither on the digital vine.

    product experience best practices

    Tip #5: Keep Product Information Consistent and Personal

    You set the bar for your product information and how it’s presented to users.

    If you paint a picture of luxury, then display an outdated SaaS platform…KPIs will naturally suffer.

    And if you only show them the best stuff on this platform, but not on this one, then the entire brand will suffer immensely.

    Product-specific information that touches users should be consistent, personable, and in line with user expectations.

    So, make sure to:

    • Give users rich, optimized, current, and curated data through every channel ✅
    • Polish! Don’t look disorderly. Fix sloppy mistakes. Address poor copy instantly ✅
    • Personalize, personalize, personalize for maximum relevance and effectiveness ✅

    👉 So, be it through marketing or the impression you give through your product design, make sure the positioning and messaging align with your brand for a good base for an even better PX. 

    Tip #6: Involve the Whole Company in PX

    If enhancing product experience isn’t a priority of every single one of your departments, then you’re missing out on some immense potential.

    What this means is, first and foremost:

    • Educating your company on the fundamentals of product experience,
    • How very specific PX teams work in relation to PX-focused companies, and
    • What it can do for the company at large – impacting everyone.

    👉 The good thing is, you don't really have to instill that idea overnight. You can gradually make the change and make PX a priority for everyone onboard. 

    In fact, this is happening to a larger and larger slice of B2B and B2C SaaS market share in most cases already.

    Tip #7: Define Specific Roles and Responsibilities

    On the other hand, it’s easy to put that on paper for, say, development teams, sales staff, or even your customer service.

    It’s another story being explicit about what this responsibility entails.

    The question is:

    How do they translate their work, their integral part in the greater machine, into the value your users are willing to pay for?

    Development

    Product teams work with dev teams ensuring focus on high-priority actions, of course, with both KPIs and the users in mind. 

    👉 Users asking for features/functions that differ from core aims is nothing unheard of, so PX plays the middleman to ensure the right people are in the loop.

    Sales

    What your sales staff can do is stay on the same page with users and development to deliver genuine, consistent, and easily understandable value.

    And hopefully not promise features that are completely unplanned 😬

    👉 In many ways, sales staff are the final bastion of hope to set the bar where it should really be so that there aren’t any surprises.

    Customer Service

    Most users don’t separate a direct experience with your product and the experience of engaging your customer service – they’re intimately connected.

    👉 CS reps can be there to rescue a product experience when users have run into challenges. These, in turn, can become opportunities for optimization through your PX team.

    how to enhance product experience

    Tip #8: Set Up Early Warning Systems

    With the sheer mountain of potential options at their disposal, product leaders establish early warning systems to act as filters.

    They don’t need to know about each and every tiny detail customers are complaining about.

    Let’s face it, some of that data-river isn’t valuable to anyone. Sorry users 🤷 

    So, what falls onto your shoulders is to make sure these systems are prioritized. Not along general or ‘basic’ lines, but deliberate.

    🔹 Which signals are the most important for your product and customers?

    🔹 Can you foresee customer churn or at least read into customer behavior?

    🔹 What is customer success for you, and where do you draw the line between customer success and a prolonged customer lifetime?

    As you comb through all that content in all its many forms (emails, social, CS, etc.), there should be a way to recognize the high-impact opportunities and answer these questions as well.

    Tip #9: Continuously Optimize Your Content

    This tip is pretty basic and goes without saying.

    But unless you are extra careful, digital companies and digital product experiences can break down just as quickly as brick-and-mortar businesses.

    That is, unfortunately, a fact.

    But don't fret just yet. Product teams can be those sets of eyes to keep all product-based content where it needs to be – landing page copy, in-product copy, onboarding copy, and all else.

    Once product-based content of any kind is left alone for more than a month, things can start going downhill fast. So make sure you are careful there.

    Tip #10: Build and Maintain Trust

    Here's a weird and uncalled-for metaphor:

    Two people give you each a fork. The forks are exactly the same, look exactly the same, and smell exactly the same. One of the people is someone you know and trust, the other, not so much.

    Which for you use? Of course, the former.

    You believe it’s the cleaner fork.

    You want people to feel that same sort of feeling when engaged with your product so that over time your brand equity is built and increased in tandem.

    On a different note, product people should also be mindful of the different degrees of trust most users associate with certain channels. And listen, this is extremely fluid.

    Consider the dynamic changes and developments in social media platforms in early 2023. One minute a channel you’re on is considered THE channel. Three months later, it’s despised (being boycotted) by a third of the population. You know what I mean 🫣

    So, harbor trust, but make sure it's on the right channels and through the right methods.

    You might regret the energy and effort you put in.

    Conclusion

    Product experience is simple.

    You answer to your users' needs and desires within your product, and you're sailing smoothly.

    How you build the base to reach the best product experience might get complex, however. But hey, there are all the best practices and tips I gave you, right above ⬆️ 

    Give 'em a try and see the difference between happy customers and satisfied users.

    Not quite there still?

    Give UserGuiding a try to solve the root of the problem 👇

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is product experience management?

    Product experience management refers to the task of understanding users' experiences inside the product and improving them, creating opportunities of upsell and upgrades where necessary, and making sure the user journeys are smooth and on-point always.

    How do I improve product experience?

    Product experience can be improved by analyzing user behavior and adopting product analytics to understand pain points and fixing them, and also by using no-code tools such as UserGuiding to improve user onboarding and make it more efficient and fun.

    How do marketers enhance product experience?

    Aside from the tips we've shared in the article, especially as marketers, you can communicate with your target audience to identify their pain points, collaborate with the product team in fixing these, and use no-code tools to create and introduce UX elements that improve PX yourself.

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