How to Increase Product Engagement Using your Product Engagement Score

The most effective way to measure product engagement is with a metric called “product engagement score”. A product engagement score helps you to quickly diagnose how a specific product is performing. It reveals what is going on with your product and business, making your product engagement score (PES) very important and relevant.

A product engagement score offers a holistic view of product engagement and combines factors such as feature adoption, average stickiness, and retention into a single data point.

So, how can you use your product engagement score to create better experiences for your customers and an overall better product?

Watch the video or keep reading to find out!

How to measure Product Engagement Score

Understanding your product engagement score is so important because it will help you drive value for customers and results for your business.

To measure your product engagement score, you need to calculate three things:

Here is an example of how you can calculate your product engagement score:

Taking the time to work out your product engagement score is a worthwhile investment. After all, the PES metric moves the conversation to a more holistic view of your product or feature performance. It allows you to have a tangible way to measure your efforts (marketing, development, enablement, etc.) to improve your product and customer experience. Your PES reveals how effective those changes or efforts have been and give you a better idea about where you can continue to improve and what areas are really working well.

How to measure stickiness

PES measures stickiness, which refers to how many users return to use your product on a consistent basis. That’s why people will often ask whether or not their product is ‘sticky.’ Do users stick around to use it as part of their daily professional life? If not, your product may need some attention.

There are two ways to measure the stickiness of a product:

1. DAU/MAU – the ratio of daily active users to monthly active users. The purpose of this method is to determine the percentage of monthly users who engage with your product daily.

2. WAU/MAU – the ratio of weekly active users to monthly active users to determine the percentage of monthly users who engage with your product weekly.

Below, you’ll see a basic example of how a company measures the stickiness of their product. As you can see, the stickiness percentage continues to rise, which is a good thing.

Stickiness matters because you want people to keep coming back to use your product. You want them to be excited to use it and having a product with a high stickiness rate means that it will be so much easier for you to attract and retain new users.

How to measure feature adoption

Feature adoption helps you identify how many people of your active user base are actually engaging with and using a specific feature. It is a user activation metric and a vital component of determining your product engagement score.

There are multiple ways to measure feature adoption. One of the most common ways is with a feature-based analysis as a count over time. An example of this would be MAU, with feature adoption rate (%) = [feature MAU / MAU] * 100

Here is a time series chart of how feature adoption can be measured:

Feature adoption matters because it measures retention and expansion. If a user continues to use certain features, they will receive more value from the product and are less likely to churn.

How to measure retention

The number of customers that continue using the product during a certain time period is what retention measures. You can measure this in terms of product-based retention or feature-based retention.

Measuring retention is fairly simple. You can choose a time period, but we recommend measuring retention as the percentage of users retained in the first three months of usage.

To help you grasp this concept further and better understand how to measure retention, take a look at the retention example below. It shows the retention percentage of a product on a monthly basis and is a great way to measure your retention and reflect on the results.

Retention matters because it reveals how many users are using your product on an ongoing basis. It shows how effective your product is at retaining users and keeping them engaged and interested in the product.

PES best practices

When you’re trying to figure out your product engagement score, there are four best practices that we recommend you follow:

When you measure stickiness, remember that the decision of whether to measure it daily, weekly, or monthly depends on your business. The best thing to do is to align the time period with your business objectives. Since you’re measuring active users, you must determine what active actually means for your product. Get really specific about that because you want to measure the results as accurately as possible.

The best practices for measuring feature adoption include contextualizing your target rates. Consider past adoption rates and identify your objectives in advance. It’s also wise to examine feature adoption at multiple levels including the user level, account level, and the segmented-user level. You also need to identify the right features and measure the action that you believe to be the most important action a user can take when engaging with that specific feature.

Finally, you have retention. Retention best practices are quite simple. First, you need to align your metric date range based on your needs. The three-month retention example you saw above may not be the best range for every business. Secondly, to measure retention accurately, carefully choose your measure for ‘activity.’

Tactical recommendations to improve product engagement score

Once you know your product engagement score, you can take tangible actions to help increase product engagement.

There are seven main ways that you can improve your product engagement score (PES):

Product-market fit is often overlooked, which I think is a huge mistake because it can impact which of the three components of PES is the most useful and relevant for you at specific times. If you’re at the early stages of your product being released to the public and you’ve gained your first customers, this is a good time to measure your stickiness. How many users are hanging around to use your product? How many are using the main feature? You then move onto predictable revenue and actual predictive revenue, which might not be exactly what you thought. Finally, you’ve got demand outweighing capacity.

It’s important to know where you are in the product-market fit spectrum. Here is a visual to help you pinpoint your position:

First time user experience (FTUX) is hugely important. You need to make sure that users get immediate value from your product. If they don’t believe they are getting enough value, they will not hesitate to abandon your product. You also need to do your best to minimize idle time and set up the least number of barriers so that users can start using the product sooner rather than later.

An effective way to boost your product engagement score is to engage and re-engage users. This means providing channels and rewards that keep users engaged. Create usage habits that align with value. If you want to get more engagement from your users, make sure that your messaging is meaningful and that users can actually connect with it. Let customers know that you care about them and appreciate their input. If you continue to attract, engage and delight users, you will continue to grow and build your user base.

Learn from your product champions!

Your product has champion users who love your product. They’re the ones who are telling other people about your product, constantly engaging with you, and are essentially your biggest advocates.

By understanding what inspires your product champions and how they find value in your product, you can use that information to provide the same value for new customers.

It’s also important to emphasize with your detractors. You can learn a lot from them about your product and why they weren’t the biggest fans. With this insider knowledge, you can improve your product further.

If you have passive users, try to convert them. They are close to becoming promoters and champion users for your product, but they just need some encouragement to help them take that next step.

Finally, you need to understand your competition. Ask your former prospects who choose a different product instead of yours and find out why they made that decision. Leverage your existing network by asking them about their experiences with your competitors.

I hope this post has helped you to better understand what a product engagement score is and ways that you can improve yours so you can better serve your customers and improve your product.

Rob Brazer
Rob Brazer
Product manager with almost 10 years of experience working in both fast-paced tech startups (Pendo) and established technology leaders (AWS/Amazon, Bloomberg).
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