In the mobile space, app icons themselves often remind us of activities or notifications happening outside the apps. For example, a red notification badge on a messaging app icon signals unread messages, and a calendar app icon might show the date. However, these external reminders can only create a sense of engagement for the app, because when the users click on them the app opens. What the user does on the app, is the user really engaged with the app is a completely different game altogether.
Once users open the app, the best way to engage users without being intrusive, is through in-app nudges. In-app nudges provide a more detailed and contextual guidance to relevant actions and updates. They can be in various forms like tooltips, coach marks, badges, PIP Videos etc.
What are Badges
Badges are the small red dots or icons or text labels that appear next to a UI element in an app. Badges are used to convey some information about the UI element, which is usually a feature of the app, or a product in the app.
Badges are one of the most non-intrusive yet extremely effective nudges. Badges appear in the app interface for a reason — be it to notify about new messages, awards, or promotions or to invite users to try out something fresh - like your latest feature.
Apps that have many features and complicated interfaces, especially in BFSI, E-commerce, and Hyperlocal industries, or Superapps use badges to quickly and effectively communicate the latest information to their users. Apps from other industries also utilize badges for new feature discovery, as well as promotions, deals, and alerts.
How are Badges Different from Other Nudges
Although in-app nudges are built to improve all the key KPIs of your app, each kind of nudge has a particular impact. Here is a list of all the in-app nudges and their intended purpose in the UI interfaces, the expected user interactions, and the KPIs that could be easily improved with them.
How Badges can Help Build Better Products
New Feature Discovery
Features are built by development teams intensively after product managers do full research on the needs of the app. Indeed a lot of resources are invested. So the next task is to market the feature. Not just outside but inside the app as well.
Announcing a feature through flashy banners obstructs user flows. Badges are the best form of in-app nudges to lead users to discover new features. Apps use badges all the time to create awareness about their new features.
Badges are non-intrusive yet tend to increase feature discovery rates by more than 20%.
To Keep or to Kill a Feature
Badges help in improving the discoverability of a feature. Once a user discovers the feature, it’s easier to understand if the feature is leading to any increase in the key KPIs that it is aimed to improve.
By using a product analytics platform product teams can establish a correlation between the number of users who discovered the feature, to the baseline metrics of the impacted KPI. This enables them to quickly understand if the feature is really working in the intended fashion.
The decision to keep or kill a feature early on is now in the hands of product managers.
What usually takes long cycles to understand, can be done quickly by implementing the usage of badges for discovering features. Iterate faster and build better products.
In this article, we have created a foundation as to why badges are important for product and marketing teams. With this understanding in place, let’s dive into some real-world examples of successful implementations of badges from leading companies.