The "Getting Started" page on Mozilla.com is one of our most viewed Web pages, with an average of 525K page views per day (following the download.html page and what's new page).
According to Ken Kovash's Blog of Metrics post from February of last year, more than 90% of traffic to this page comes from the embedded link in the bookmark toolbar that we've pre-loaded onto every version of Firefox.
The remaining 10% of visitors seem to come from a link on the First Run Page.
From Ken's post, we know that a lot of the people that hit this page come to it by accidentally hitting the link on the toolbar. We also know that even if they are coming to the page on purpose, they aren't finding what they were looking for, with 95% of traffic bouncing right off the page. From this information, I can basically make a few conclusions:
1) The Getting Started Page is one of the biggest touch points we have, inside or outside of Mozilla.com.
2) A lot of our users are looking for specific content on the Getting Started page.
3) Most of those users aren't finding whatever they are looking for.
How do we fix this?
I think we have a few options:
- Kill the Getting Started page.
I just don't think this is a viable option. We have so few touch points with our current users as it is. Outside of Mozilla.com, we have access to the snippets on the Google Start page, the First Run page, the What's New page, the Getting Started page and our social media outlets (Twitter and Facebook). I agree that we can't leave the page the way it is, but getting rid of the page doesn't solve the problem. If anything, it makes the problem much worse by leaving us with one less channel to communicate.
-Re-brand the "Getting Started" page
We could definitely look into renaming this page and calling it something else...like maybe the "Firefox Connect" page. The only problem is that we still don't know what kind of content these 500K users are looking for. Obviously, the "Getting Started" title resounds with some of these users, or else, they wouldn't be clicking on it. My theory is that they hit the page expecting to find information about using Firefox features or setting up Firefox and stumble on a page in which we recommend certain websites or tools. Users must be looking for something to do with "Getting Started" and re-branding the page on a whim without knowing what people are looking for will lead us right back into the situation we're in now.
-Test the content on the Getting Started page
I think this is by far the best option. This entails creating new content for a variety of audiences, and testing them on a percentage of the population to see what content these users are looking for. The design that has the lowest bounce rate will give us insight into what kind of content these users are looking for.
Now for my idea....
One idea I have is testing the content found on the First Run page. As it is now, people get to the First Run page immediately after downloading Firefox for the first time.
Going from my own experience, people are not very patient after downloading an application or program from the Internet. It's all about clicking through the introductory tabs and information and getting to the actual usage of the product. And once they realize they don't understand something or they get confused, then they look for more information. And this is where everything gets *interesting*. As things stand now, the First Run page is not a page that you can navigate to unless you know the exact url. We don't promote it anywhere. It's just the page that comes up right after download. So what happens if you're impatient and just want to start playing with the product after downloading? You lose the opportunity to explore the content on this page. And even if one of our users decide to explore some of the content on this page and say, decide to be a Facebook fan, they have no way to return back to the First Run page. Once you leave the page, that's it. Finito. Game over.
So what makes the most sense to me is to at least try putting this content on the Getting Started page. More than that, we also have to promote the page to all of our New Users and how to find the page. Doing so will give this page the best opportunity to offer all of our users a place to go to find out the basics about Firefox in a consumer friendly, visual way.
We definitely need to get the testing process started as soon as possible. Please feel free to let me know if you have other ideas for content testing.
So after reading all of that...
Here's the Summary:
1) The Getting Started page is very important. The fact that it's linked on the bookmarks bar is very important. It's our only "constant" touch point with our users
2) The GS page, as it stands, is not offering people the content they want.
3) Testing Content on this page is the best way to figure out what are 500K users a day are looking for,
4) The First Run page design, within the site, not in layout, is broken. As is the What's New page. Neither are easy to find/navigate to and although the information they offer is useful, we need to find a permanent place for people to find this information, preferably, within the product. People should be able to find this information whenever they want it, not just immediately after upgrading or downloading.
5) Maybe we can put the content of the First Run page on the Getting Started page? Maybe we can find other content that will please our users?
Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any other ideas or suggestions.
What would you like to see on the Getting Started page?