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New: Input fields

Emily Wang
5 min read

You know those signup flows that are 5 screens long and ask a total of 12 qualifying questions? Sometimes I wonder if they’ll just show me a screen at the end that says: “thanks for playing but you don’t qualify” or something like that. But the broader point is that as a user, I’m generally suspicious whether I’ll get any value from the upfront survey I’m taking.

Will my product experience actually be tailored or different? Will the product ask me for the same information again once I’m in the app?

One of the most often cited best practices in user design is to give value before asking for something. Or to at least keep these interactions in balance. But while intentions may be there, engineering and bandwidth constraints make it hard to hook up the upfront survey to dynamic user experiences. But PQLs and MQLs must be calculated, and so many feel obligated to continue the trend. It’s the best we can do.

Or is it?

Best practices in the wild

When you see a really thoughtful onboarding experience, it stands out. They’re focused, inline, look native and are interactive. Productivity tools are often great at this, and Asana is no exception.

Branching is baked into the flow and helps users envision their projects.
Project creation pairs input with instant feedback.

And if we all had the resources to build, measure, iterate and maintain these flows as they invariably grow in permutations, then awesome. But what if we could enable all SaaS companies to tap into these best practices?

What if all SaaS companies could leverage these best practices?

Bento started with offering branching, integrating the question with at least a more dynamic onboarding experience. 

Chapter 2 of our platform is all about capturing more types of info from users, so that flow isn’t a separate survey that’s not integrated into the product or your onboarding.

To come? Easy ways to hook it all together and persist it in your own application.

Bento’s 5 initial input fields

Building steps in Bento feels more like a document editor than futzing with CSS.

We’re not reinventing form fields, but we are making them easy to use and nice to look at. To start, Bento supports 5 fields:

  1. Short text (100 char limit)
  2. Paragraph text
  3. Email (with validation)
  4. NPS
  5. Flexible number poll

Each field is designed to look nice in any of our layouts and checklist components, with helper text, placeholder text, and prebuilt error and validation states. You’ll find out about inputs from users via Slack and email notifications or export them (don’t worry, there’s more to come here).

Putting it to use

In fact, we’ve updated our own onboarding guide to end with a final few questions. We decided not to pop up a separate survey just to ask questions, figuring this would actually give users the opportunity to share an answer when they felt ready, vs being put on the spot.

Bento's own inline onboarding guide (with embedded input fields asking for feedback).

Want to try it out? Sign up for a demo (so we can put our heads together and map out a good trial-plan), or if you really don’t want to, email me at emily@trybento.co and I’ll send over the super secret sign up link ;) 

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