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What's the vision for product tours?

  • 9 March 2021
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HI! I was evaluating other digital adoption platforms and I already like the direction Intercom is taking. I want to understand what's in store so that I can be confident that I made a decision for the long term.

 

What's planned for product tours? For example, are things like Tooltips and Checklists in plan?

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Best answer by Milan 11 March 2021, 10:06

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Hello @sanjeev n​ , As far as I know, the Intercom roadmap is not public.

 

Q - For example, are things like Tooltips and Checklists in plan?

A - Users including me requested this feature in @Product Wishlist​ group.

 

It's hard to say if this request will be implemented. However, the Intercom product team always looking for feedback in Interconnect and implements it.

 

I may not know exactly what Vision the Product tour will have in the future, but I know that the best team is working to create it.

Thank you, Roy! I'd understand the decision to not make the roadmap public but I was just wondering if there's any mention of the direction in which the product is taking. I'm trying to understand if Intercom will (if not today) eventually build deep capabilities in onboarding/product tours.

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Hello @sanjeev n

I was wondering about this for the last 2 years, even before they launched Product Tours but announced it during one Intercom event.

Since then some time passed and it was finally live. I had high hopes for it as back at that time I've been already dealing with other Digital Adoption Platforms and since Intercom was already used I thought it would be great to migrate everything to Intercom. But realized that Product Tours is pretty basic compared to what I needed back then. So we did not go with Product Tours.

 

However, Product Tours is a great tool to start with especially if you are already using Intercom heavily. I like how it can be integrated into other features like chat and Series.

 

What it lacks is better options for styling (as does Intercom in general). It does not have any advanced triggering options, no advanced logic.

 

If you need complex user tours, with a lot of logic, branching, Intercom Product Tours is not for you.

 

Will Intercom improve Product Tours? Probably yes, but I highly doubt that it will be competing with real DAP any time soon, maybe if Intercom acquires one of the smaller DAP players.

 

BTW, with the help of some devs, you can simulate the checklist (dev can create a menu with links to product tours and can track who clicked on it and put a checkmark if it is clicked). I've worked on cases where devs even took over the logic and they were launching different Tours I made based on the activity of the user on the page and thus creating the one longer Tour, like it had a capability to branch.

I like how it can be integrated into other features like chat and Series

Yes! This seems impressive and the fact that I can control both in-app and outside-app experience in the same product. This gives me so much flexibility.

 

I'm hoping that it will but it doesn't make sense for me to use both Intercom and other digital adoption tools. It's too expensive. I've gone with Intercom, hopefully it gives us what we need.

Hey @sanjeev n​ 

 

Zoe here from the Product Team @intercom.

 

We're actually in the early stages of evaluating potential enhancements we could make to Product Tours this year. I don't have anything to share at this point, but we'd love to hear thoughts and ideas about what would be most useful for you and why 🙂.

 

Tooltips and checklists are two ideas we're considering. Could you expand on how you intend to use these?

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Hey @zoe s​ 

Glad to hear this! As someone who used WalkMe, Chameleon, Pendo and Appcues, besides Intercom Product Tours, if you wish, I can give you a huge list of things that would be great to have (or should I say some are mandatory to have). Here's some:

 

  1. Customization, at least some. I have never seen the tours (from other solutions) that are not at least to some extent aligned with the UI of the app. It's really unnecessary to have the profile icon and the name, make it optional (this is such a low effort thing for your devs). Also, some styling if possible although I see that this is generally your mantra - that everything looks the same across all the features, with almost no customization (kudos to whoever led the Banner development and made it possible that we have at least some customization).
  2. Better logic. Currently, the Tours are just straightforward. There is no branching of any kind. This practically makes Product Tour useless for some slightly complex flows. You've made this in Series (yeah, I know, you might say "combine Series and Product Tours" but I guess there are many users who just need Product Tours as an add-on and will not go to upgrading to get Series just because of this). Also, I had cases where there was an element that can be collapsed/expanded, and it remembers its state so does not get reset on each page load. And I had an element that I needed to point to within that element. I made a Tour that assumes the expandable element is collapsed (as this is the case for the first-time users) and then added a step that points to an element. Obviously, this Tour does not work when the element is already expanded. We need logic, branching, that will cover both scenarios and that Intercom will know which path to go to based on the visibility of the elements.
  3. More triggers! Trigger on hover! Please. If I have a drop-down that shows on hover, I can not make a Product Tour with that step. Trigger after x seconds. I can come up with more...

 

I've tried covering more things within these 3 bullets, hope it helps!

If you wish to hear more - feel free to ping me!

Cheers!

Everything @user382​ said +

 

  1. Persistent tooltips. The little question mark things that stay with the UI forever and can be invoked on click. That way, whenever a user gets stuck they just click on the question mark and they get context on the feature
  2. Navigating to other URLs. Today, we are dependant on the user clicking a button as part of the flow. Tools like AppCues let you navigate the URL completely. This is very useful for a first time user where we want to show them
  3. FAQ Boxes Okay, this might be a luxury. I know that everything is triggered via the Intercom widget but sometimes, we would like to inform users on the page. For example, we'd want a persistent box right below the password field explaining the password policy. Or, one liner explaining a feature on the bottom of the page. You might argue that this should be part of the UI itself but this is mostly assisting the product functionality and hence part of product experience.

Thanks both! I've just finished a deep dive of our competitor offerings so these points resonate a lot with me. Will keep you in the loop as we progress our thinking here and have more to share. Rest assured that tour improvements will be top of mind over the coming months 🙌

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