Aspireship provides on-demand training in SaaS sales through an online portal, and for graduates of the program, they help with job placement.
Skilled SaaS sales representatives are in high demand at the moment. In fact, they are so in demand that Aspireship’s partner companies are willing to subsidize the cost of online SaaS Sales training, in exchange for access to high-quality graduates. Through these subsidies, there is no cost to students who graduate the program within 30 days. It is free, there’s no catch.
Problem / Opportunity
Aspireship has seen a plateau in the rate of user signups. There is an opportunity to research how users interact with the site, and make improvements that will increase sign-up rates.
Before we could start working on solutions, our group needed to properly frame the problem, through the eyes of the user. In what ways does the current Aspireship site work well, and where does the site fall short of meeting user needs and expectations?
Five usability tests were conducted to help answer these questions.
When first experiencing the site, users had an overall positive reaction. They said it felt professional and high-tech. However, users began to dive deeper into the site, they consistently ran into the same blockers. In they end, users reported a low level of confidence in signing up for the Aspireship program. Blockers can be summed up in two main categories: Unanswered Questions, and Distrust of Pricing.
Unanswered Questions: Users reported wanting to know more about the curriculum, how Aspireship would help with job placement, and data on success rates.
Distrust of Pricing: Users reported not believing that the service was actually free. 100% of users thought that there would be hidden fees, that the service was a scam, or that there was a hidden catch somewhere.
The good news is that Aspireship can provide answers to all of these questions, and the service genuinely is free to the user. How can we better convey this information, and work to build trust with the user? Again, let's look at it from their perspective.
4 out of 5 people could not find the information they were looking for.
5 out of 5 people do not trust that the service is actually free.
To better see the website through the eyes of our user, our group mapped the path, or "journey" taken by the typical user through the site. This map is based on data from Google Analytics, and insights gained through user testing.
Check out this PDF report if you'd like to get to know our user better, and dive into the thought process driving their actions.
On the current site, according to analytic data, about 5% of users who visit the Aspireship website sign up for the program. What's holding back the other 95% of users?
When a user comes to this site, it means they are likely looking to get into into SaaS Sales. Changing careers is a big decision, but even the smallest details can determine how that decision is navigated, and whether or not the user will choose to go with Aspireship.
Every time a user clicks a button, and that button doesn’t act as expected, it undermines confidence.
Updating how the information is laid out on the site, and minimizing what was presented in the top level navigation allows for a more intuitive navigation.
Changing some of the language to more accurately reflect the content helped users better understand what Aspireship is offering. For example Classes was changed to Courses to more accurately represent the program. Another example is the Pricing page was eliminated, and this content was integrated into the flow of the Courses page.
Each decision our group made about architecture and language was the direct result of research, and once design changes were made, it was validated with user testing, unless those changes didn't deliver the results we wanted, in which case we'd update the design and test again.
We asked users helped organize content on the site in a way they thought most intuitive. Through conducting a series of three card sorts (one open and two closed) with a total number of 32 users, we were able to organize the high-level information on the site in such a way that makes sense to the vast majority of users visiting the site.
Now when users click a button, the content is as expected, no surprises, each new click on the site building confidence that Aspireship’s SaaS sales training course is the right decision.
What would you think if you went to a website and the product was advertised as free? Does it sound like a good value to you?Would you trust it?
In this section, I will explain how we helped users trust that the Aspireship SaaS Sales training program is truly free for 30 days.
100% of people interviewed did not trust that the service is actually free.
The original pricing section, the Free version and the Pro version are presented side by side. Users interpreted these as two distinct programs, but didn't understand the difference, other than the price.
For the first revision of this section, we created a low-fidelity prototype that reduced the section to its most basic visual components.
U revealed that the current underlying structure of how the information was presented lead users to make the incorrect assumptions about the relationship between the two sections.
The two separate Get Started buttons on the Free and Pro versions, when clicked, lead to the same place. They are the same program, and everyone who signs up gets the first 30 days free.
In the final version, there is only one Get Started button, and users are able to easily understand that the 30 Day Trial is Aspireship Pro.
The word “free” is left out all together because, as user testing revealed, this word can trigger distrust in users.
The final version has almost the exact same content as the original version, with minor modifications to design layout and rephrasing of the word “free”. By making these research-driven changes, we were able to more clearly communicate the pricing structure, and inspire trust in our users.
The more we refined and tested, the more consistently we got positive feedback on the site.
Through this iterative testing and refinement, a story began to emerge, one that anticipated questions that users would ask, and presented them exactly the right information at the right time.
Users reported enjoying the experience, and felt confident that they had everything they needed to sign up for Aspireship.
We built an interactive version of the final design that was presented to the client.
You're welcome to view the final design through this link:
Please note that only the Home Page, Courses, Get Hired, and About Us are developed. The other pages were outside of our scope for this three-week project.
As of May 2021, Aspireship is currently incorporating these findings and design recommendations into their current site. We are eagerly awaiting analytics results to see how the new design will impact sign-up rates.
Stay tuned for updates!