Getting as many qualified feedback from users is key to succeed as a product manager. More and more product teams now have, in their weekly schedule, dedicated time to talk with their users. And now that the Covid-19 restrictions start to disappear, real-life events, meetups and user tests can happen again.
Still, even if you do all of that, you won’t be able to speak with ALL your users on a regular basis and if you have a question, between interview organisation and your users availabilities, you won’t be able to get an answer before the end of the day. And only talking to some of your users increase the risk of making biased choices and missing opportunities of working on more important topics.
Quantitative + Qualitative
So, also having a quantitative approach for your research can be mandatory. This way, you’ll get answers sooner and from more users. That may be the only way to do if you need to collect some information, like information about who they are, what they think about your product, how they rate some parts of it or other tools they may be using, for example.
Both methods are really efficient, depending on your objective and you should not choose one over the other. Being able to use the right method to get the answers you need will become one of your most important skill as a PM.
We recently had a conversation about that with Benoit, the Cofounder of Lokki. Lokki is the preferred partner of all equipment rental companies (bicycles, scooters, scooters, skis, snowboards, snowshoes, camping equipment, etc.). They are helping their users eliminate paper, shift to digital, save time and develop their online presence.
More than 300 companies are using Lokki everyday and if it was possible for Benoit to talk with all his users at the beginning of the adventure, not it would ask him to spend way more time than he has.
So we asked him how he was choosing between interviews and in-app surveys:
As Benoit explains, interviews and surveys creates a cycle at Lokki:
First they start with interviews, then when they need more quantitative data they use in-app surveys and the close the loop with more precise interviews with people identified in the survey’s responses while saving a lot of time.
"When doing my user research, I used to call 10-15 customers every month to ask them about their specific needs, but I needed more insights at scale to get a clearer idea and avoid biases. With Screeb, in less than one week, I've had asked hundred of users and analyzed insights very quickly. This would have taken me 3-4 weeks to run my user research."
The 3 rules from Lokki
So here is what we can learn from the Lokki example:
🤝 Don’t choose between interviews and in-app surveys: do both.
🔎 Choose the right method for the type of answers you need and the stage of your project.
🔄 Create loops: use interviews to spot patterns, then share in-app surveys to have quantitative data and close the loop with precise interviews.