Evolve Your Product

A common theme with web tools I use daily are very jarring and big changes to the core functions of the product. Overnight. There were many times where I find myself using a tool on a Friday, and come Monday, the entire UI changes dramatically. It then can become very difficult to find the actions I use, which may lead to frustrations.

How many times have you heard your peers say “oh, Company A changed their app again!” and “What happened? I can’t find anything anymore?” The solution? Evolve your product. It needs to be a natural progression to be able to get your users ‘trained’ to use the function, and not feel forced.  There are some good and bad examples I’ve seen out there.  When Google Maps changed their UX about a year ago, it felt a bit painful and quite dramatic.  There was always a way to escape out of the new UI and continue to use the classic one.  What I noticed they did from an outsider’s perspective was that they gradually made changes over time during the beta period.  The changes were quite small but significant enough that the user experience continually improved over the course of time.  Today, I don’t consciously realize I am using the new UI.  The transition was smooth.  Striving for this as a product manager is a goal.