Let's face it, user onboarding is hard. But only 2.2% of website visitors and 5% of mobile app users will become paying users, so it pays to get it right. Luckily, with only a few tools you can create a great user onboarding experience without much work. Here are a few to get you started.

User Onboarding Tools for Both Websites and Mobile Apps

Onboarding Guides – What if you could show every new user how to use your app in a different way? With Appcues you can by making personalized onboarding guides. Let's say you want to teach Twitter users how to add their Twitter account. But you also want to show Facebook users how to integrate Facebook. With Appcues, you can give both users different tours without changing your onboarding experience for everyone.

Onboarding Messages – Your new users will need a lot of help. But they'll rarely ask for it. If you don't want to spend all day personally contacting each user, you'll need a trigger-based messaging tool like Lifecycle to do it for you. Lifecycle helps you automatically email, text, or send push messages to web and mobile users based on what they do in your app. So anytime a new user doesn't complete a purchase, visits your FAQ page, or gets stuck on a certain part of your app, you can automatically send a message to help. There are a lot of ways to use messages to onboard your users, here are just a few ideas.

Animated Tutorials with GIFS – Sometimes it's better to SHOW users how to use your app than explain it. And nothing's easier than using an animated GIF. The good news is, apps like Gifgrabber, Licecap, Schnapps, and Record It make GIF creation dead simple. Just make a GIF that shows users how to use your app and add the GIF to your onboarding emails, FAQ page, or app walkthroughs.

Deskolia – No matter how great your user onboarding experience is, someone will have questions. And the last thing you want a new user to do is fill out a form to reach you. This is where Deskolia or Helpscout comes in. Deskolia is the online helpdesk software that makes your customer support feel human. There are no forms and no robotic auto replies. Just answer any new support ticket within Deskolia and your users will get a reply that looks like a regular email.

Video Feedback – Watching someone use your app can provide amazing insights about your onboarding experience. But without tools like Usertesting, getting this kind of feedback can take forever. Usertesting helps you "look over the shoulder" of hundreds of people while they use your app. You get recordings of real people using your app so you can find ways to improve your onboarding.


User Onboarding Tools for Web Apps

In-app surveys – Sometimes you want to know what users think about your app. And it's easy to get answers with simple, one-question surveys. If you want to know anything about your app, use a tool like Webengage, Feedback Daddy, Survicate, Qualaroo or Survey.io to get answers.

zopim

Live Web App Chat – If you want to help users while they use your app, try live chat tools like Olark or Livechat. If a new user is confused or has questions, you can help them before they get the chance to leave.

hopscotch

App Walkthroughs – The jury's still out on app tours. Some people think they're a must have, others think they just annoy users. It's just something you have to test yourself. Luckily, you don't have to build your own. You can use one of the ready-made options like Shepherd, Hopscotch, Iridize, Tour My App, and Walkme. If you're using Bootstrap, you can try the free Bootstrap Tour.

wistia

Onboarding Videos – When an animated GIF isn't enough, go with video. But Youtube won't cut it here. You want a video that matches your site design and keeps users in your app. You need Wistia. Wistia is a simple and beautiful way to add onboarding videos to your site. You can even update your video without removing it and get heatmaps to figure out where users need the most help.

GravatarGravatar makes your users feel welcome during onboarding. There's a sense of familiarity when they launch your app and see their face. You also save users a few minutes by prepopulating their image. It's the little things that make your onboarding great.

Web App Analytics – A good analytics tool will be first to alert you of onboarding problems. You can see where users drop off in the funnel and use the data to optimize. You can use the tried-and-true Kissmetrics, the free and complex Google Analytics, or the new Calq.io. There are also many others on this list of 66 app analytics tools.

inspectlet

Record User Sessions – Tools like Clicktale and Inspectlet record your users' sessions. You can use these recordings to watch exactly how users use your app to improve your onboarding experience.

We write posts like this all the time. Why not subscribe?


User Onboarding Tools for Mobile Apps

apptentive

In-app feedback and survey tool – Good user onboarding requires user feedback. And Apptentive helps you get it. Apptentive helps you have two-way conversations with new users. You can even survey users to get feedback that will help you improve your onboarding experience.

hipmob

In-app chat and FAQ – When new mobile app users have questions, they don't want to email you. This makes Hipmob a must-have onboarding tool. Hipmob give new users a way to live chat with you. Your new users can also get quick answers from your in-app FAQ.

countly

Analyze User Onboarding – A mobile app analytics tool like Countly and Appsee will help you get the data you need to improve your onboarding experience. You can see exactly how long it takes a new user to create an account, what they do after they sign up, and how long they stay around their first session. If you want more mobile app analytics tools here are 30 more options.

watchsend

Record user sessions – When analytics tools can't tell you why users aren't properly onboarding, recorded app sessions will. Tools like Watchsend and Lookback show exactly how new users use your app so you can improve the experience.

splitforce

A/B Test Your Onboarding – After you collect data and watch recorded user sessions, it's time to experiment. You can start a simple A/B test using tools like Splitforce and Taplytics to test which changes improve your user onboarding experience most. If you need more mobile a/b testing tools, here's a list of 20 you can choose from.

P.S. If you need more mobile app tools, articles, books, etc. check out this list of 217+ mobile app resources.

Clearly there are more user onboarding tools available. But I've listed the few that can help you create a great user onboarding experience in just minutes.

Did you find this user onboarding post helpful? If you think I missed any user onboarding tools, email me at steffan@lifecycle.io and I'll add it to the list.

Ready to change the way you connect with your customers? Sign up here.