Amplitude Office Hours

Onboarding and Activation with Thomas Siegl

Activation metrics play an important role in understanding user behavior and driving success for product management to remain profitable. Thomas Siegl, the founder of Kasva, a digital product and growth agency, joined the team at Amplitude for this Office Hours session. Learn new ways to analyze your onboarding journey and hear what other users are asking.

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“The time of cheap customer acquisition cost is over... over the past few years, it's becoming tougher and tougher.”

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Thomas Siegl

The significance of activation metrics

Activation metrics measure user engagement with a product. These metrics detail a range of focus areas, including user sign-ups, onboarding completion rates, adoption of product features, and product usage rates. They’re a great starting point for teams who are just beginning to experiment with improving their growth. Just a quick look at your paid ads performance will tell you the days of cheap customer acquisition are over. So it’s important to make the most of every signup, and optimizing your activation is a great way to do that.

Product teams continuously analyze and monitor these metrics to gain valuable insights into changing user behaviors. This makes it easy to identify what works well and which areas need improvement. The desired result is to improve the activation process and reach user goals.

The significance of activation metrics

The activation funnel

Similar to a traditional sales or marketing funnel, the activation funnel represents the several steps a potential product user takes from initial interaction to becoming actively engaged.

Understanding and visualizing the different stages of the activation funnel is imperative. You use this to pinpoint more accurately when users drop off in the activation journey, whether from not finding what they need or experiencing activation friction.

From here, optimize the stages to improve conversions and retention. Activation metrics bridge acquisition and product, and a natural way to bring together product and marketing teams.

Two critical stages of activation are the aha and habit moments. The aha moment is “when a customer experiences for the very first time the value proposition of your product,” while the habit moment is when “your customers repeatedly perform… a core action of your product.”

The activation funnel

Funnel analysis

One of Amplitude’s most popular features is the funnel analysis tool. This capability enables teams to better visualize and analyze how users progress through predefined sequences. These include specific events or actions within the product detailed in the Amplitude platform after tracking set-up.

With accurate funnel analysis, product marketers can identify potential bottlenecks and opportunities for optimization within the activation process. The data is updated in real-time, aiding in the vital decision-making process for the next steps. In the video, I identify a large drop-off in my funnel chart, which shows at which stage people are falling out of the activation process, highlighting a key area to improve. To further understand this, look at both the current funnel stages, but also the conversion rate between stages over time.

Funnel analysis

Segmentation capabilities

You can group users in the onboarding and activation stages of the product journey into specific categories. Amplitude has powerful segmentation capabilities that you can define and tailor within your dashboards.

You can segment users in whatever way will benefit your activation tactics and can be categorized by specific demographics, such as age or location, job roles, or user behaviors.

The segmentation feature enables you to gain deeper and more valuable insights. To go beyond a basic funnel with segmentation, to determine exactly what factors influence users’ responses to the activation process, including what might deter some users and who those users are.

From here, you can tailor their activation strategies and trial different tactics for each user segment.

Retention data

Some teams put all their efforts into the earlier stages of the buyer journey. However, retaining users by ensuring continuous engagement is just as important.

The data correlated and formatted within Amplitude can show how many users continue to engage with a product long-term and when and why they begin to drop off.

Retention data analysis is crucial in understanding how well your product serves users. Suppose you notice users begin to lose interest in the product only a few weeks after they start to engage. In that case, you can investigate more ways to ensure prolonged satisfaction, which will, in turn, improve customer loyalty. Retention analysis is a great way to identify your habit moment - by looking at different return events, you can gauge which experiences are driving users back into the product.

Retention data

Final thoughts

Activation metrics are integral to the success of any product strategy. They provide valuable insights into user behavior patterns that can help guide future decisions about product optimization. Use these charts to form hypotheses, which you can test, and iterate on to see what improvements you can make over time.

Leveraging analytics tools like Amplitude encourages a data-driven approach. Product teams can collaborate from a singular platform and optimize the activation process to drive user engagement and achieve sustainable product growth.

Final thoughts

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