Eight UI design practices to help your app get more subscribers


Date: 14 February 2020

A customer uses an app on her smartphone, and decides whether to upgrade to the premium version.

So, finally people are downloading and using your app. What a feeling, right? Well, congratulations. But are you getting paid subscribers?

One of the biggest challenges that developers and publishers face is getting paid sign-ups. It turns out that everyone’s trying to break out of the same cage. And thankfully, it isn’t as hard as it seems.

Here’s a list of UI design practices that will help your app get more paid sign-ups.

1. Ensure ease of access

If I was considering paying for an app, I would be put off if I found it was too complex to use.

Yes, it’s great to offer a ton of features. But are you making sure that the features aren’t hindering the ease of access, visibility or convenience of use?

Users may not care much about these factors when the app is free to use. However, when money is at stake, they’ll turn picky and won’t accept UI negligence.

And as they will pay for the premium app only if they love the free edition, it’s your duty to make sure that the UI is simply killer in both paid and free versions.

2. Display the offers at the right time

As you try to lure people into signing up for your offer, timing becomes crucial.

Take this for example. A user opens your app and spends some time looking around. They use it for a while, and then come across your offer to upgrade to the paid-for model.

Now, there’s a chance that the user is ready to take the desired action. However, if we give the user more time to getting used to the app and its features before showing the offer, more people may be interested in getting the premium version.

This is because, when a user has used your app for a good amount of time, they have developed trust in it. And when they see your offer after this time, the offer becomes more convincing.

3. Make use of data

You have access to the app’s analytics, right? This is the time you make use of that info.

Track data for your most used features and pages. See how you can enhance their usability or place some paid add-ons that users might like to buy, or bring out personalized offers for different users based on their varying interests in your app.

The idea is to track and test, and track… and test… and update the UI based on the results.

This will enable you to constantly upgrade the UI quality, resulting in more paid subscribers and brand advocates.

4. Play around with push notifications

Have you ever noticed how payment apps become more active with push notifications when you are passing by a restaurant, cinema or shopping centre?

This is powered by geotagging, combined with a smart marketing campaign that serves actionable and relevant information to users as they walk past a place that can create business opportunities for the app.

And it's not just about geotagging. There's a bunch of other techniques that can go well with push notifications. For example, you would know when your app's users are most active, the pages that they surf the most, or the features that attract the most traction.

Combining all this data, you can come up with a suite of push notifications that are actionable and conversion oriented.

For example, La Redoute, one of the biggest e-commerce apparel retailers in the world, significantly lowered their cart abandonment rates with push notifications.

The aim was to bring back lost customers and retrieve abandoned carts. So, they started a super-personalized push notification campaign. The emphasis was on "super-personalized" content: the push notifications had links to the users' carts, where they could recall their forgotten shopping intentions.

Also, this is one fine way to boost site traffic on your target pages.

5. Use pop-ups that are attractive, actionable and easy to close

We all know the good, bad and the ugly side of pop-ups. When they are good, they perform. When they are bad, they distract and repel. And when they are ugly, they evoke irritation and annoyance.

It’s not about playing it safe by eliminating pop-ups from your UI strategy. The idea is to create attractive and actionable pop-up banners that please the eye, attract the mind and are also easy to close.

6. Smartly limit/offer access

Limiting your app’s access on the free model to encourage users to buy the premium deal is like walking a tightrope. You have to maintain a perfect balance between what you offer and what you don’t.

If you offer a lot, they may never go for the premium version. However, if you ask them to pay before they can even open your app, you may eb putting users off before they even get to know you.

So, think it through. Limit your app’s access smartly ensuring the right balance.

7. Rework your CTAs

CTAs (calls to action) are the most crucial buttons for kicking off conversions. Whether you are promoting a product, a service, or even your app’s premium version, without an actionable and smartly designed CTA, your app will cease to sell.

The solution is simple. Educate your team about the importance of actionable CTAs and how to create them.

Here are the qualities of a high-converting CTA:

  • A button, not a hyperlink: Hyperlink CTAs can crop up in an email campaigns, or on carelessly/lazily developed websites. They are highly unattractive, not actionable, and often fail to acquire any attention at all.
  • Good CTA wording: As the main aim of your CTA is to encourage users to take action, you must create persuasive copy. Put yourself in the consumer’s shoes - what would make you click? Discuss copy with your content team before rolling out a CTA update. A/B testing is one crucial practice for optimizing your copy.
  • The right colours: Colours and colour combinations play a vital role in CTA optimization. While using pink on green or pink on red may not be a great idea, a green CTA button over a white or red background can work wonders. However, as every business is unique, test different colour combinations and see what works best for you.

8. Fine-tune the checkout process

While sometimes users simply flow down the conversion funnel, often they take forever to move one step ahead. In the worst-case scenario, they abandon their purchase before the checkout page.

There are a number of techniques that can help you optimize your app’s checkout process. For starters, here are a few tips that you can use:

  • Keep it short: Nobody likes checkout forms the length of a bank account application. Weed out the unnecessary form fields and keep it no longer than a two-step process. The quicker a user walks through the process, the sooner you get your money.
  • Include various payment methods: Gone are the days when credit, debit and internet banking were the only payment methods you needed to offer. This is the crypto age, so you should accept payment by as many methods as possible. Some of the most popular online payment platforms are:
    • PayPal;
    • Amazon Pay;
    • Google Pay;
    • Apple Pay;
    • X-Payments;
    • Bitcoin;
    • Braintree;
    • Payzine;
    • Due.

Copyright 2020. Featured post made possible by Christopher Pappas MBA MEd, Founder of eLearning Industry's Network, which is the largest online community of eLearning professionals.

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