CXL Minidegree: Conversion Optimization Part [7/12]

Aaron Baker
5 min readDec 13, 2020
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

In our rush to launch products, we often overlook the importance of user research. A lack of data can result in missed opportunities and poor product decisions. User research helps you, as a; product manager, marketer, developer — prioritize your users and create more useful products for them, which ultimately leads to increased profitability for your company.

User research is a vital part of product development and can help you build better products. However, certain things to keep in mind when conducting user research: — User research shouldn’t be a one-time thing.

User research is all about understanding your customers and what makes them tick. It’s about getting as close to the customer as possible so that you can understand their needs and behaviour.

User research is a great way to gain insights and get feedback from your users about your products. It’s not always easy to get people who are willing to give you honest feedback, but it’s well worth the effort.

What is user research?

User research is a critical part of the design process. It’s important to ask meaningful questions about what your users are trying to achieve and what they expect of your product.

It’s essential to be aware of the biases and assumptions you have, as well as those you are prone to having. This means being conscious of what information you consume and how that information impacts your thinking.

The best way to stay ahead of your competitors is to do user research. You can learn from the experiences of others and make sure you’re solving users’ problems. It’s essential to understand what customers want, not just what they say they want.

The benefits to your organization

Improving your business is all about data. You need to have a firm grasp on your user’s habits to figure out what they like and dislike and what changes would benefit them.

Tasks that are rework-prone are considered to be the riskiest ones. A lot of rework is caused by incorrect assumptions and poor planning. Higher customer satisfaction is only achieved by building a relationship with them.

Most users are unlikely to return to a brand that they don’t have a positive experience with. The only way to build that relationship is by consistently delivering excellent customer service and optimizing your users’ experience.

The differences between user research and market research

Market research is an integral part of any business. It’s critical to understanding the preferences and behaviours of your target market. But there are some key differences between user research and market research that you need to understand to get the most out of your data.

It’s important to remember that you are solving a problem for a particular group of people. To keep you on track during your research, we use personas to identify the most critical issues. User and Marketing personas often overlap in their characteristics. However, they serve two distinct purposes.

User personas help you understand what your users really need from your business. It’s important to realize that they want the same things you want but in a slightly different way. They play an integral part in developing your product or service as they give you a better understanding of your users’ problems and how you can solve them. User personas are centred around usability and defining key outcomes.

Marketing personas are about discovering who a customer is and how they make buying decisions. Marketing personas are about understanding your customers’ motivations, their concerns, and their goals. They can be very broad or very specific to a particular demographic. They are a way to make sense of the buying decisions customers make when they visit your website. Using marketing personas can help you understand what customers want, which will allow you to focus your marketing efforts better.

How different research techniques help you answer other questions.

When defining your research objectives, it’s critical to consider these three things.

  1. That your research questions are drive by the organization’s goals.
  2. There need to be apparent differences between behavioural and attitudinal research, and when they should be used.
  3. When you gain your insights, you must ensure that it is incorporated and every stage in the product development lifecycle.

Defining the right questions.

It’s essential to drill down on objectives to get to the right goals and tie your research to them.

Examples of goals:

Company-wide goals?

Example: Grow revenue from subscriptions by 20%

Department Goals?

Example: increase daily active users by 1,000 each month.

Feature Goals?

Example: Reduce the number of support requests we get about our out-of-the-box integrations by 50%.

Use “who, what, where, when, why and how” to help you develop questions.

Goal: Reduce the number of support requests we get about our out-of-the-box integrations by 50%.

  • Who: Who is currently submitting these support requests? Are they the same few users? Different Users?
  • What: What is the content of these tickets? Are there clear patterns and categories?
  • When: How many support tickets do we currently get each week?
  • Where: Are these tickets related to any specific technical configuration or platform?
  • Why: Why are users struggling with our integrations? Is our documentation inadequate? Is something unclear in the UI?
  • How: What ends up being the resolution to these tickets?

Open-ended vs close research question

Open-ended question: Is your research exploratory? Are there a lot of unknowns?

Example: What are the problems people experience when they try to fill their medication?

Close-ended: Do you have apparent assumptions or beliefs? Can their confirmation or falsification affect your business?

Example: Users who haven’t been exposed to our brand are significantly less likely to purchase our premium plan.

You need to make sure that you are doing your best not to build research on faulty assumptions

Final Thoughts

I give this first week a 4/5. There was some time spent on introducing CRO that I imagine being helpful for the uninitiated. Still, for me, I’m looking to get a more in-depth understanding of running successful testing programs.

Until next week!