8 Ways We're Dogfooding Our Product at Appcues

5 minute read

If you don’t know much about Appcues, yet, let me explain it to you:

Let’s dive right in.

Appcues Using Appcues: User Onboarding

Of course we use our own product to onboard our new users! And that’s probably what inspires hundreds of users to sign up for it each week; they’re curious to see how our user onboarding looks. Their expectations are lofty, and, well, data suggests that we meet them. 86.84% of new users make it through our onboarding flow (see results below).

Here are the first and second slides of our user onboarding experience. If you want to see the rest, you’ll just have to sign up 😉.

Appcues user onboarding 1
Appcues user onboarding 2

Our conversion from sign up to completing the initial user onboarding flow is 86.84% shown here via Mixpanel:


Appcues Using Appcues: Feature Adoption

Whenever we release new features, we—a combination of our dev team and our marketing team—make like product marketers and set up a feature announcement and walkthrough for our users.

We’ve found that this method of engaging users works not only to demonstrate our new functionality at scale, but to also show off what can be done with our own product.


Sometimes we even try and use the new feature to show off the new feature. But as you can imagine that can get a little too meta…as maybe is this blog post…


Appcues Using Appcues: In-App CTAs

We’ve used Appcues for just about everything you can imagine. We’ve used it to create Paywalls, to promote content or pricing incentives, to offer product demos, to survey our users, to collect NPS scores, to say happy holidays, and to send each other birthday cards. It’s funny ‘cause it’s true.

Happy Birthday Jonathan 2
Happy Birthday Jonathan 2

*Jonathan’s birthday is on May 4th. Mark your calendar and send him your favorite Star Wars memes @hijonathan 🎁


We limit our free trials to 15 days to give users a taste of our product without asking them to commit to a payment plan. To keep users honest about their intentions and to create a bit of urgency during trials, at the end of the 15-day period, we display what is known as a paywall. This paywall effectively locks them out of the app, prompting the trailer to pay—or at least add their credit card—to continue their usage.


If you are a regular reader of our blog, you may have seen How We Increased Free to Paid Conversions by 68% By Using Our Very Own Paywall. That article details our process and our success in using this form of 'growth hack.'

Deal Promotion

Every once in awhile, we’ll send out a pricing promotion or a little cherry on top to prospects we believe are close to buying Appcues. Sometimes we do this to get the deal in within the month, or other times we do it to make it a little easier of a decision for them.

By using an in-app promotion, we get them when they are most likely to convert—as they are actively engaging with the product.


By simply pasting a list of email addresses into Appcues targeting, we can limit the audience to whom the promotion is being shown. This allows us to offer discounts without sugesting that pricing is in our control, and therefore opening the window for negotation. It’s a sneaky trick, but it has definitely helped us bring a few deals in under a self-imposed timeframe.

Demo Offer

We’ve found that our users are a lot more likely to convert from free-to-paid if they get a demo from a sales manager. Naturally, we want to get on the phone and demo Appcues to as many of our free trailers as possible. The trouble is, however, that not every free trailer is interested in getting on the phone with us 😮. I know, right!

We’ve tried many different email and outreach strategies to improve this percentage, but it wasn’t until we implemented an in-app CTA that we had a huge bump in success. The CTA looks like this:


The coolest part of it is that trialers can put time on our sales manager’s calendar right from there. It’s increased our percentage of trialers we demo by nearly 100%, which is impacting our revenue every week.

User Surveys

Collecting user insight is imperative to unlock organic growth. Sean Ellis spent some time with us to reveal his never before shared strategy for doing this on our blog 🔥🔥.

The basis of his framework is to collect insight about your product from your most engaged users and then put that copy on your homepage.

We did exactly this shortly after the post went up—gotta walk the walk, right!?—and found some rich ideas that helped us describe our three use cases (user onboardingfeature adoption and user retention). Thanks Sean!

Organic Growth Survey 1
Organic Growth Survey 2
Organic Growth Survey 3

Net Promoter Score

NPS is an essential way to benchmark customer happiness over time. The best way to implement NPS in my opinion is in-app. The reason being is that an in-app NPS survey targets your active users in context—while they are engaging with your product—not out of context—via email while they are on the run and not truly thinking about you.

I believe the in-app method gives you more accurate results, and it’s by no means a novel way to do it. There are lots of other tools out there to implement such a survey, but we decided to use Appcues to measure the NPS of our customers. We then turned that into a template for them to do the same:


Holiday Greeting

It’s imperative to say Happy Holidays to your user-base once in a while. Right? I mean who doesn’t appreciate a little holiday cheer?

Holiday cards can give your brand a more human touch, and show that you care just a little bit more. Here’s our beautiful Halloween modal sequence we popped up in Appcues for our users last year 🎃👻:

Holiday Greeting 1
Holiday Greeting 2
Holiday Greeting 3
Holiday Greeting 4
Holiday Greeting 5

There You Have It!

We love using our own product at Appcues. We’re probably our biggest fans 😆. But we’re not the only ones doing cool things with our product. Definitely check out our customer page. Our beloved customers are also doing some amazing things with the product. Some things that we can’t even hold a candle to.

We’d love to hear from you! How do you dogfood your own product?!

Try out Appcues