Designing for a Product-led growth



Designing for product-led growth involves creating a seamless and intuitive user experience that drives adoption and encourages customers to become active users. Slack is a workplace communication tool that has successfully used product design to drive growth and attract millions of users worldwide. By prioritizing the user experience and focusing on solving real problems, product-led design can drive adoption and create sustainable growth for any business.

This approach differs from traditional marketing and sales-driven growth, focusing on acquiring new customers through marketing and sales efforts. Instead, a product-led approach prioritizes customer success and product functionality, making the product the driving force behind the company’s growth. This leads to customer referrals and organic expansion, making it a customer-centric method that has been gaining popularity in recent years.

Findings from the 2022 Product Benchmark report indicate that product-led companies are experiencing rapid growth at more than 100% year-over-year revenue growth, twice as likely as sales-led companies. This is especially true for companies that offer a freemium product.

Example of PLG

For instance, take Paytm as an example. The onboarding process is straightforward and user-friendly. For payment, users open the app, scan a QR code, enter a number, and type in a pin. For those in a hurry, there’s even an option to transfer money to their wallet for quick and easy payments. The ease of use leads to daily transactions and turns users into potential customers, fueling the growth and advancement of the product. Ultimately, customer satisfaction is the driving force behind a product’s success.

Why is designing for Product-Led Growth is Important?

– Attracts customers: Designing for product-led growth can help attract customers to a product through word of mouth without relying on expensive marketing campaigns, which can help companies save money in the long run.

– Increased User Engagement: By focusing on the user experience, companies can create products that are easy and enjoyable to use, which can lead to increased customer engagement and satisfaction.

– Better User Insights: Designing for product-led growth can provide valuable insights into customer behaviour, which can inform product development and marketing strategies.

– Organic Growth: By creating a product that is valuable and easy to use, companies can drive organic growth through word-of-mouth marketing, user referrals, and high levels of user engagement.

– Improved Product Development: By focusing on the product as the primary driver of growth, companies can prioritise the development of features that deliver real value to their users.

– Increased Customer Loyalty: A well-designed product-led growth approach can lead to increased customer loyalty, as satisfied customers are more likely to become repeat customers.

– Cost-Effective: Designing for product-led growth can be a cost-effective way to drive growth, as companies can reduce the need for expensive marketing and advertising campaigns.

– Better Customer Acquisition: By focusing on the product, companies can acquire customers in a more sustainable way, as the product itself is the primary driver of growth.

How to design for product-led growth?

Designers are often instructed to prioritize user-centered design and conduct thorough user research. While market research provides valuable insight into the market potential for a product, designers must consider users’ needs, wants, and pain points. However, it’s equally important to balance users, business, and product. The goal is to create a successful product, not just a product that serves the users. A focus solely on users without considering the viability of the business may lead to product failure.

Most importantly, designers must align the business goals, product functionality, and user needs. This requires understanding the business objectives, defining the target audience and their needs, and ensuring that the product meets both the business and user goals.

A holistic design approach takes into consideration the product, the business, and the users into the picture

By balancing these three elements, designers can create meaningful and successful experiences that benefit both the company and its users.

– Business

Before a designer begins working on a product, it is vital to comprehend its mission and vision. This includes understanding the business objectives, revenue targets, and desired market position.

Designers must also be aware of the various market penetrations. If the product is to be sold in another country, it is crucial to understand the multiple factors that affect the business there.

– Product

When it comes to the product, it is essential to comprehend its roadmap. This includes identifying the critical areas for quick wins and determining which elements of the product are crucial to its success. For example, if the product is divided into 20% and 80%, it is essential to understand the significance of the 20% – this may be a unique selling point. Understanding the deadlines for delivering the product and ensuring that the designer’s creative ideas align with the product roadmap is also essential. Failure to meet these deadlines or misaligning the roadmap can result in an unsuccessful product.

– Users

Understanding users means figuring out how user experience can deliver the ultimate CX

To make the end user successful it’s important to consider few key factors:

A. Unified and seamless ecosystem: A product’s success depends on a well-built and seamless ecosystem with other platforms.

B. Increase retention: Providing a positive and memorable user experience can increase customer loyalty and keep them coming back.

C. Accelerate adoption: A user-friendly design and accessible features can make it easier for new users to get started and quickly adopt the product.

D. Decrease churn: Addressing pain points and providing timely support can reduce the likelihood of customers leaving and decrease churn.

E. Increase active usage: Continuously improving and updating the product based on user feedback can encourage frequent and active usage.

F. Increase end user success: Providing a user experience that helps achieve desired outcomes can lead to increased end user success and satisfaction

 Current and future scope of User Research in design

In user research, the design community typically focuses on demographics, geographics, user needs, and user pain points. However, the modern design philosophy calls for a shift in focus to also encompass psychometrics, firmographics, and market influence in addition to these traditional areas.

1. Psychometrics

Psychometrics in user experience refers to measuring a person’s psychological characteristics, such as personality, intelligence, and emotional states, to understand their behaviour, preferences, and motivations. By understanding these psychometrics, designers can create products and services that are more tailored to the needs and desires of the user. Psychometrics help designers build a deeper understanding of the user, leading to better user engagement, increased satisfaction, and a more positive overall experience.

i. Subject matter expertise- Subject matter expertise refers to the level of knowledge and understanding a person has in a particular field.

ii. Data and analytics – The modern design world uses data and analytics to make informed decisions and improve the user experience.

iii. Influence level – It is the degree of impact a person has on others or a given situation.

iv. Cognitive tolerance It refers to a person’s ability to handle complex information or tasks.

v. Technology proficiencyIt refers to a person’s comfort and ability to use technology.

vi. Language proficiency- It refers to a person’s ability to understand and communicate in different languages.

vii. Lifestyle traits – Lifestyle traits are patterns of behavior, interests, and opinions that define a person’s overall lifestyle.

2. Firmographics:

Firmographics apply very well to B2B and refer to demographic information about a company or organization. Moreover, in the context of user experience, firmographics play an essential role in understanding the target audience and customizing the user experience. 

Some common firmographic data includes,

i. Industry type 

ii. Target market

iii. Target segment

iv. Organizational Size 

v. Business goals

vi. Occupation type

3. Market influence:

Market influence refers to the external factors that affect the user experience. These factors can be economic, cultural, technological, or societal. For example, current trends, consumer preferences, and technological advancements can impact the design and functionality of a product.

i. Domain influence

ii. Competitor influence 

iii. Regulatory factors

iv. Environmental factors

The new-gen design philosophy?

Design is not just about creating aesthetically pleasing products but also a seamless and intuitive user experience. The Newgen design philosophy takes this concept to heart, aiming to revolutionize how we interact with technology. This philosophy prioritizes the user above all else, carefully considering their needs, preferences and behaviour to create products that are not only visually appealing but also functional and easy to use. With the Newgen design philosophy, a better user experience is guaranteed, giving you the tools you need to achieve your goals easily and efficiently.

1. Personalization – Scalability:

Design should be flexible and adaptable to individual user needs and preferences, while still being scalable to accommodate a large user base.

2. Time to task – User engagement:

Design should prioritize quick and efficient task completion, while also engaging and retaining the user’s attention.

3. Contextualization – Navigation:

Design should take into account the user’s current context and provide clear and intuitive navigation to guide them through the experience.

4. Inclusion – Consistency:

Design should be inclusive and accessible to all users, while maintaining a consistent and coherent brand identity.

5. Emotional innovation – Intellectual Innovation:

Design should strive to evoke an emotional response in the user, while also incorporating innovative and intellectually stimulating features.

6. Discoverability – Guided flows:

Design should make features and content easily discoverable through intuitive and guided flows, reducing friction in the user experience.

7. Security – Accessibility:

Design should prioritize the security and privacy of user data, while also being accessible to users with disabilities and different devices.

Wrapping it up

To design for product-led growth, designers must balance user-centred design with business and product considerations and focus on delivering a seamless and positive user experience. The future of user research is moving towards a holistic approach that considers both demographic and psychological factors, ensuring that products are designed to meet the needs and desires of users. By adopting a product-led growth approach, companies can set themselves apart and achieve rapid growth driven by the success and satisfaction of their customers.

This blog is based on our webinar on Product-led Growth. You can watch the recording HERE.

Unlock the Power of Product-Led Growth with Divami Design Labs! Stay Ahead of the Game with Our Expert Design Trends. Visit Our Website Now to Discover More!

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