BlogUser Involvement: Why it is Important in the Development Process?

News flash, “Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian, sisters, have urged Instagram to stop imitating TikTok.” 

This hot issue last month caused a stir and made Meta face some backlash.  

Kylie Jenner, with 361 million followers on Instagram, and her sister Kim Kardashian, shared an image saying “Make Instagram, Instagram again. (Stop trying to be TikTok I just want to see cute photos of my friends.) Sincerely, everyone.” 

In a post, Mr. Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram said that the platform was shifting to video and that people liked and shared more videos than photos, irrespective of changes to the platform. 

“I need to be honest,” he said. “I do believe that more and more of Instagram is going to become video over time.” – Adam Mosseri 

What does this situation say about the value of customer feedback? Should businesses involve their customers in the development of new features or changes to their apps or software? 

Collecting and analyzing feedback is an important part of app development. If you don’t understand what your users want, your app is doomed. 

In today’s competitive and changing market situations, innovations originating from customer needs are an effective way to support market success. Users can provide more information and input if they are involved and be given a part in the system development cycle. 

Though you might believe you know better than your users, listening to their opinions is critical at all stages of the product life cycle. 

The benefits of user involvement during app or software updates 

Here are some of the advantages of frequent user involvement: 

1. It shows areas of improvement.

Getting user input or feedback allows you to track overall customer satisfaction and gain a clear understanding of what customers want in particular.  

Use the information gathered to identify problem areas and efficiently resolve the issues that users are experiencing.  

Their involvement can provide more reliable methods of developing and organizing features. By working with users, system developers can obtain data and information directly from them, understand their needs, and assist them in gaining an initial understanding of the new features.  

When users have a positive experience with your new app or feature, they will not only return to your product or services but will also recommend it to their friends and family. 

2. It helps you develop a better customer experience.

A well-thought-out customer experience (CX) is a factor that ensures the user’s goal is met successfully. The better the customer experience you provide, the happier your users are, and the more successful your company is. 

The Jenner-Kardashian wasn’t happy about the new features of Instagram as they felt like it was copying another platform.  

To improve CX, you must first understand what areas are failing and what needs to be improved. Then involve your users in the process of improving your apps or features. How? 

Ask them. The simplest and most effective way to find out is to ask those who use the product and have firsthand experience with all issues. There are plenty of ways to do that. Surveys live chats, emails, and so on. 

3. It makes the user feel they are important and valuable. 

Customers feel like they are a part of the business when they are asked for their suggestions or feedback, and this in turn establishes a relationship with the company. 

Customers fulfill a public duty by providing reliable information about their experience with your service, while also motivating the business to improve for their clients.

Final thoughts… 

User involvement can help the system developers to get fast and easy usable feedback. 

Getting your users involved in any type of changes or development you plan will provide valuable input to various technical decisions to be made. Their participation may be more valuable because those decisions are more socio-technical than purely technical.  

Their opinions embody themselves, not the programmers, the system analyst, or the company itself.  

Instagram’s backlash against their test version of a video-focused platform let the team temporarily reverse course.  

“I’m glad we took a risk — if we’re not failing every once in a while, we’re not thinking big enough or bold enough. . “But we definitely need to take a big step back and regroup.” – Mosseri 

Now, Meta has discontinued a test version of its Instagram app that enraged many users, including the most followed celebrity users, Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian.
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