This is a really great interview with Scott Belsky, cofounder of Behance, over on Design.blog. He hits on the “first mile” of a product—the initial interaction a user might have and why it’s so important:
A failed first mile cripples a new product right out of the gate. Your product may get lots of downloads or signups, but very few customers get on-boarded and primed to the point where they know three things: (1) why they’re there, (2) what they can accomplish, (3) and what to do next (note: users don’t need to know how to use your product at the beginning, they just need to know what to do next!). Once a new user knows these three things, they have reached “The Zone.” Fantastic businesses are built when the majority of users that express interest in a product are able to get on-boarded and into The Zone.
If you’re not following Design.blog just yet, I would recommend doing so. The team behind it at Automattic is creating some really awesome content.
Pairs well with: How to Power User Onboarding with Small Wins