Mobile Academy: User Journey

Posted on November 1, 2012

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this was a short session where Andrew showed us a couple of user journey examples, and then had us work on creating a user journey for a project,  or for buying a ticket at the London Underground.

Do you know what it is like to be your user ?

What are the things that will make them come back or go away ?
Do you know what makes your users happy of annoyed ?
when considering a service it is important to know the user’s journey as they use the service,  from the first discoveries or touch points through to finishing with th eservice.
For online services this may well be the main way in which you can determine if a US flow is correct.
He points out that it is not just users that go on a journey but your company as well and showed a graph from Y Combinator,  a company that fund large numbers of startups with a small amount of money.
User Journeys are Good for design or scoping work, and should be used to ensure that everyone has the same understanding of the user journey.
[This user journey can then be used to communicate your product and service,  the user journey is able to show how the service works and why it will be successful,  or where the problems might exist and therefore how these can be addressed]
when you begin to create a User Journey start with the user in mind. [and though you might think this obvious,  when we started working on our user journeys in the practical part of the lesson,  some folks were very stuck in thinking about their product or business and not the user,  and were using terms like “we will” and so on]
Make the journey coherent between touch points, because you need the journey to flow from the user’s point of view, otherwise they may get lost or confused, and confused users tend to walk away from your product or service, or worse bad mouth you on the internet.
A user journey does not just start and finish with the user coming into contact with your product or service, therefore design for use, but also before and after use, think about how the user will discover your service, and how they will arrive at your “front door”.
Also don’t forget that there may be other parts of a user journey after they have finished with the direct interaction with your service,  how will they talk about it, will they come back and so on (see a later session on triggers, called designing a desirable product.
So it’s one thing to design the steps your user takes on their journey,  however what should you be looking for,  what are the key steps.
Look for points to delight you user, or to cover problems or help them out through the difficult parts of the journey.
Evaluate the peaks and troughs of the ux as shown by your user’s actions.  [what he means here, I think, is to measure user’s progress and look at where they spend too much time,  where they leave the process etc,  so that you can then try to work out why,  and fix it.  ]
Understand the cumulative affect of the issues  [ I like this, coz. Often bugs are considered separately, and a host of small problems can be more debilitating than one big issue.]
In the example user journey provided included the concept of moments of truth,  these are the steps that are critical to win over user thinking or actions that are a commitment,  registering, payments, make certain actions etc.
For each step consider not just the actions, but also the user’s feelings, thoughts, and reactions.
[I think this is important,  because so often, in my experience, the product manager or the designer will just assume that the user is enthusiastic, or is desirous of continuing,  and they might not be, or they may be continuing because they have to,  and understanding the feelings etc will help work out the voice of the product and how it speaks to the user.
Here is the template that Andrew suggests is useful for an online type journey.
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