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Andrew Chen @andrewchen
, 13 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
1/ OK, this is an infuriating startup experience: You ship an experiment that's +10% in your conversion funnel. Then your revenue/installs/whatever goes up by +10% right? Wrong :( Turns out usually it goes up a little bit, or maybe not at all. Why is that?
2/

Let's call this the "Conservation of Intent." For all your users coming in, only some of them are high-intent. It's hard to increase that intent just by making a couple steps easier - that'll just grow your low-intent users.
3/

Doing tactical things like moving buttons above the fold, optimizing headlines, removing form fields - those are great, but the increases won't directly drop to your bottom line.
4/

If you're at a company that A/B tests everything and then announces the great results - that's wonderful, of course, but just run the thought experiment of summing together all of those A/B tests. And then look at your top-line results. Rarely does it match.
5/ Similarly, this is a reason to be skeptical of vendors and 3rd parties who have case studies that'll increase your revenue by X just because they increase their ad conversion rate (or whatever) by X.
6/ Couple important lessons: Unblock your high-intent users. For Uber, that was things like payment methods, app quality (for Android especially!), the forgot password flow, etc.
7/ You obv get real net incremental increases on conversion the further down the funnel you go. By that point, the low-intent folks have burned off. You're closer to the bottom line.
8/

When it comes to your product roadmapping, yes you can definitely brainstorm and ship a bunch of +10% increases, but you need to add a discount factor to your spreadsheets to reflect reality.
9/

When you focus on low-intent folks, you'll have to get creative to build their intent quickly. Things like being able to try out the product, having their friends into the product - these are the "activation" steps that generate intent.
10/ Relevant essay on getting users more psych'd here, guest written by @dariusmc from the Dropbox growth team: andrewchen.co/psychd-funnel-…
11/ Many of you have directly experienced the "Conservation of Intent" but now you have a name for it! It's tricky.
12/ This is really a reflection of how working on product growth is really a combo of psychology and data-driven product. You can't just look at this stuff in a spreadsheet and assume that a lift in one place automatically cascades into the rest of the model.
13/ Got a story on this? Would love to hear it in the replies :)
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