Here are hot-off-the-press benchmarks for GOOD and GREAT activation rates, by pr... | by Lenny Rachitsky

Lenny Rachitsky


about 2 months ago

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Here are hot-off-the-press benchmarks for GOOD and GREAT activation rates, by product type, based on a survey of 500+ products. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this survey, and a huge thank you to @TheTimenator for partnering with me on this work. More takeaways below.

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1/ What is activation rate? Your activation rate is the % of your new users who hit your activation milestone. Your activation milestone (often referred to as your “aha moment”) is the earliest point in your onboarding flow that, by showing your product’s value...

...and is predictive of long-term retention. A user is typically considered activated when they reach this milestone. Since increasing activation rate is one of the best levers for increasing retention, it’s often a major focus for growth teams.

2/ What are examples of activation milestones? A good activation metric should be two things: 1. Highly predictive 2. Highly actionable Below are some of the most common activation milestones from our survey, categorized by product type:

A few of our favorite examples of activation milestones: - First day of food and weight logged - First 5 survey responses collected - First design published and shared - First video created that received a view - First listen to more than 40% of a track

3/ What is a good activation rate? Based on our survey results, broadly, the average activation rate is 34%, and the median activation rate is 25%. For just SaaS products (removing marketplaces, e-commerce, and DTC), the average activation rate is 36%, and the median is 30%.

We consider being in the 60th percentile a GOOD activation rate, and being in the 80th percentile a GREAT activation rate. Why such variance in activation rates? Mostly due to the typical milestone definitions within each category, and how much effort it takes to get there.

For example, marketplaces and e-commerce companies have the lowest activation rates because they generally define their activation milestone as the first transaction. B2C freemium products have the highest activation rate because their typical activation milestone is low-friction

4/ What are the most common ways to increase activation? In our survey, we asked, “If you’ve had success improving activation rate, what change has had the biggest impact?” Here are the eight most commonly referenced tactics:

Here are examples of each →

5/ What are the most common mistakes people make when setting their activation milestone?

6/ For much more, don't miss the full post

7/ If you previously completed the survey and didn't get access to the raw results, fill out this form → If you still want access to the raw results, share how you developed your activation milestone →

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