Strategies for Using In-App Video to Enhance the User Experience

Jenna Rodrigues
July 19, 2022

When a user opens your app, they’re only going to continue using it if the experience is enjoyable. One way to enhance the experience and keep your users engaged is with in-app video.

The video format is useful in many ways. People watch videos to be entertained, informed, educated, and for any combination of those purposes. It should come as no surprise then that an in-app video can be an extremely useful tool.

Here are a few strategies for using in-app videos to bring your user experience to another level.

General In-App Video Tips

Before looking at ways to use in-app videos to drive user engagement, here are a few general tips to keep in mind to get you started.

Set Video Triggers Logically

Like all good UX, your features should help the user rather than interfere. This is why thought needs to be put into when and what triggers an in-app video. You run the risk of alienating users if you have an in-app video every time they sign in or each time they perform a single task. Instead, think about the user’s probable workflow and incorporate videos at opportune times to help them, not slow them down.

Keep Videos Short

Your in-app videos need to get to the point quickly. While users find video content engaging, they’re not going to want to sit through a 5-minute video showing how one feature works. Less than a minute is ideal for any in-app video.

Always Remember Accessibility

Any time it comes to design, it’s critical to pay attention to accessibility. In-app videos are great for many users, but for some, they simply cannot be viewed or heard. It’s important to include text-based content that accomplishes the same task as the video. Think of in-app videos as a supplement to written content, not a replacement.

Start With a Welcome

The first time a new user launches your app is your opportunity to make an impression. When you include a video to welcome a new user to your app the first time they use it, you immediately create an engaging experience during the onboarding process. This video is also your chance to provide a high-level overview of the different features of the app.

First impressions are crucial. Recent data indicates that 25% of apps that a user downloads to their device are only opened once. To make sure your target audience doesn’t become a part of that 25%, you need to ensure a user’s first time opening your app is memorable. We talk all the time about user engagement, and this is important from the moment the user is first introduced to your app.

Use In-App Videos for Tutorials

A welcome video is a great way to introduce users to your app, but additional video tutorials illustrating how to use specific app features can help keep your users engaged. Hopefully, you’ve built your app with a clean UI and an intuitive UX so using the app shouldn’t be particularly difficult. However, users will still benefit from short video tutorials to see features in action before doing it themselves.

These videos can be a great supplement to your ‘help’ section. They’ll also make the users feel more engaged, as the video format stimulates their senses far more than reading written instructions or even viewing photo-based instructions.

Guide Users Toward Your Target Outcome

In-app videos can be used as a means to gently nudge users in the direction you want them to go. Videos can be integrated as a natural way to gradually move your user along from point A to point B. Point A is of course the first app launch, and point B is whatever the end goal of your app is. This depends on what your business model is of course.

For example, if your app is a software as a service (SaaS) solution, then your goal is probably to get users to pay for an account subscription. You probably won’t want to push for the sale in your welcome video. That could turn users off.

Instead, use feature-based videos to encourage them to subscribe. This can be particularly useful if your service has a free tier and a paid tier. As they use various features, prompt them with a video showing off a related feature that is available in the paid tier. Providing actual videos of this feature in action can be far more effective than simply describing it.

Key Takeaway: In-App Videos Are Effective When Used Strategically

Video content is big now, and you can use it to enhance your app’s user experience. The important points are to welcome your user, show them how to use your app, and ultimately guide them toward whatever your call to action may be. Just keep in mind that videos shouldn’t be too long and you don’t want to overwhelm your users. Only trigger videos at key points in your app.

If you’d like help using in-app videos in your next project, the professional team at Camber Creative has years of digital product experience.

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