In a previous post, I explained how to quickly validate a business idea: make a sale or a pre-sale asap, or get yourself to a point where you can make a sale, then make it happen asap.
That’s also the best kind of feedback, by the way. Paying users means you’re doing something right. Right?
But what about everything in between? How do you measure your effectiveness as you grow?
Better yet, what if you don’t have the resources to conduct a full study?
I can’t speak to your specific situation at this moment in time (though I would love to), but I can share three ways our clients have done it, without sacrifice.
1) A/B tests
When to use them: when you need to choose between two competing elements.
During A/B testing, two versions – identical except for the element you’re testing — are randomly shown to an equal number of participants. (100 users will see version A. Another 100, version B.) The resulting analytics around the desired outcome decides the winner.
A/B tests are easy and inexpensive to set up, and last no more than a week.
2) Stakeholder interviews
When to use them: when you don’t have access to real users and need feedback to move forward.
We know, stakeholders are not actual paying users. But they are users too, in a way. So if you can’t reach real users, or don’t have any, talking to a stakeholder is better than guessing your way into a solution. The ones we’ve worked with in the past had a pretty good sense for what’s what, and their insights really kept things moving.
Obviously, you’ll want to talk to actual users once you have the opportunity to do so.
3) Help tickets and bug logs
When to use them: when you lack the necessary tracking and analytics to identify friction points and other problems within your app.
I am not making this up. All said and done, some of our clients have scoured their help desk tickets and bug logs in order to locate potential opportunities and areas for improvement. Okay, many of the complaints were small, but some of the smallest fixes resulted in the most significant changes.
So don’t let an impediment stop you. Start from wherever you are, find a way to collect the information, and get going.
Until next time,
image: Public Domain CC0 1.0