“Google style” trackable carousels in Contextual

Contextual Carousel – swipe intro to your app from Contextual – Mobile App Onboarding on Vimeo.

I’ll admit we’ve been wrong about carousels and so we’ve now made available the ability to create rich carousels inside Contextual.

The benefits are:

  1. graphical environment to author and preview before release
  2. Easy HTML authoring, no need to get mobile developers to hard-code specific native carousel code
  3. Tracking of user swipes – and analytics of performance against your success metrics
  4. A/B Test to test which carousels perform better
  5. Put a carousel anywhere you want – not just the home screen
  6. Easily update when you launch new releases

Google Analytics Carousel Animated GIF

So why did we change our mind? Simply…well…customers were asking for not just contextual tips, tours and modals but a way to catch user’s attention when they immediately open the app.

This example on the right shows how Google combines:

  1. An initial carousel to tell some big messages
  2. A contextual coachmark to tell the user about the current screen the user has landed on.
  3. A message indicator to highlight there is news waiting.

The positive impact of this approach is due to the famous Aristotelian “triptych” for speakers:

  • Tell them what you will tell them. (the Carousel)
  • Tell them. (the tip or Coachmark)
  • Tell them what you just told them. (this is called off-boarding, which is often referred to as “next-best-step” and I should cover in a future blog post).

The great benefit of the Contextual carousel approach is our analytics will tell you the performance of the swipe-able carousel and you can followup with contextual tips to reinforce the message to drive usage.
As we’ve stated elsewhere here, here and here often people just swipe through and can’t tell you what the carousel said.

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    Contextual & StreetHawk Inc 2023.