When your customers are product designers and managers, there’s immense pressure on your product to be intuitive and insightful, almost to a clairvoyant degree. Product managers anticipate the needs and desires of their users – so they expect to have their own needs anticipated by other product managers. (Can you imagine an endless line of product managers, tier after tier of them managing products used by product managers, stretching off into the horizon of infinity?)
UserVoice, product management software that helps drive strategic roadmap decisions by providing analytics around feedback, manages to stay in step with their demanding user base by employing FullStory’s segmenting and playback abilities. Real-time session playback allows them to see into the heart of customer problems and circumvents the need for laborious, pricey, and biased user testing. Better yet? FullStory captures every single page element and interaction, so Joshua Rudd, VP of Product at UserVoice, never misses an important customer experience.
It’s no secret that one of FullStory’s most beloved features is its record-everything approach to collecting data. Once you place the (surprisingly small) FullStory script in your site, you’re automatically capturing every user and every event, with no need to instrument particular buttons or form fields. UserVoice had tried other analytics tools for product managers, and according to Joshua, “The amount of effort it took to get started was astronomical.”
Even putting aside the time commitment required to place dozens of pieces of code throughout his site, Joshua had to manually select which events to track, often before a feature or site page had been launched. If he wanted to pivot and track something else, it was impossible to retroactively collect data that hadn’t been recorded.
With FullStory, Joshua can look at any funnel, event, customer, or combination thereof, with data stretching all the way back to the moment the recording script was installed on the UserVoice site. “It’s monumental, being able to throw in some code and then figure out what events to track, instead of the other way around.”
It seems natural that UserVoice would use UserVoice for customer feedback and communication. But customers don’t always know the best solutions to their own problems, despite thinking they do.
“Users write in to say, ‘We wish your app did this,’ but that doesn’t tell us what goals they’re trying to achieve,” according to Joshua. “What the user proposes as a solution isn’t always the solution that truly meets their root problem.”
With FullStory, it’s easy to get to the heart of the matter without a long back-and-forth with the customer. “When feedback like that comes in, we watch sessions to identify what the user is doing today to achieve their goals or overcome their obstacles. Then we can understand why they’re asking for a particular solution, empathize, and come up with the solution that’s truly best for the user.”
Traditional user testing has too many drawbacks to discuss here (you’re probably familiar with a few yourself), but the one that UserVoice had the most difficulty overcoming was the lack of relevant user testers. Their customer base is made up of highly specialized professionals in the areas of product development and support. “We couldn’t go out into the street and test on any old consumer,” as Joshua described the issue.
By using FullStory, UserVoice isn’t testing people like their customers, they are their customers. And better yet, they’re sitting at their own desks, using their tools, and communicating with their teams – not being watched through a one-way mirror in a testing facility.
“When customers come into the office to test, they’re not in their natural environment. With FullStory we get contextually relevant information.”
TL;DR: Instrumenting every link or button was a no-go for UserVoice – that required pre-cognizance of every customer quirk and idiosyncrasy. Joshua chose FullStory for playback because its record-everything approach leaves no stone un-turnable. But along the line, he encountered more benefits, including an unprecedented level of customer behavior insight, and instantaneous, relevant user testing.
“FullStory has proven really valuable,” Joshua said of the first few times he tried the platform. “It’s given us a whole new level of insight we didn’t have before.”
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