Mobile App Onboarding In Action (Or Not)

Mobile App Onboarding In Action (Or Not)

I recently started using Jive. Here's the good news: it's a great way to manage projects and communications across colleagues. So naturally, given that I was finding the service so useful, I was keen to add the mobile app. That's natural of course, because for any service that relates to communication or time management, mobile has to be part of the solution. We keep our mobile phones with us all day long, so they are the perfect way to get hold of each other and be reminded when something needs to get done.

But it was on installing the Jive app that I experienced my first serious issue. So serious, in fact, that it took me some time (and some friendly and helpful colleagues) to get past this hurdle:


I'm going to admit this stumped me. What, precisely, is my "Jive URL"? It turns out that what this screen is looking for is the 'home' URL of my company's Jive instance. But two things strike me as making this a poor initial app experience:

  1. What would be wrong, exactly, with simply asking me to log in and then figuring out what Jive account my details are associate with? This is, after all, pretty standard and something used elsewhere (see below)
  2. Even allowing for there being an issue with the approach above, the total absence of any contextual help of advice left me floundering. Granted, I'm not necessarily hard to confuse, but surely this was asking a bit much for a bear of average brain?

Onboarding matters. If you doubt that, recall that 19% of app downloads are used precisely once. Retention figures suggest that less than 10% of users last longer than a month with any given app. And that is a huge amount of acquisition spend wasted. Fortunately Jive is a good enough product to have made me persevere. But would I have done the same for an e-commerce vendor or travel app? Unlikely. That's why it's absolutely vital that new users can answer two questions as soon as they arrive: "Why am I here?" and "How does this thing work?". In the case of Jive, the first was already answered: the second was barely addressed. Lastly, as promised, here's the Asana equivalent. Now that wasn't so hard was it?