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The Ultimate Guide To Using Walkthrough Software for SaaS

The Ultimate Guide To Using Walkthrough Software for SaaS

Imagine driving to a new destination without a GPS. It’d probably take you hours and you might not even get to the right place. SaaS apps also need walkthrough software to guide their users through their products.

A walkthrough software uses interactive walkthroughs to support new user onboarding. If you get your new user onboarding wrong, it’ll create a domino effect on all your product metrics:

  • Product time to value goes up
  • When your time to value goes up, user activation drops
  • Then first-week retention drops
  • …Leading to a low LTV:CAC ratio

The general consensus is that time to value needs to be as low as possible so that more users can get the value of your product early during their onboarding process; that way more of them stick around.

The Aha! Moment is the first experience of value in your product. To help users reach there faster before losing their interest in the product, you need to have great interactive walkthroughs that can only be provided by equally great interactive walkthrough software.

If you are on the lookout for a walkthrough software that will knock the experience out of the park for your users, keep on reading!


  • Interactive walkthroughs provide step-by-step onboarding experiences.
  • Unlike product tours, actions by a user trigger the next step in the onboarding process.
  • Interactive walkthroughs help to improve user onboarding, feature adoption, product adoption, pushing upsells, and reducing support costs.
  • Types of walkthrough software include user onboarding, employee onboarding, and mobile app walkthrough software.
  • The choice of software should be evaluated by use case, budget, features of the software, and available integrations.
  • We recommend Userpilot for customer onboarding, WalkMe for employee onboarding, and Pendo for mobile onboarding.
  •, Salesflare, Demio, Tallyfly, and Trello feature engaging product walkthroughs. Read on to view them.
  • To build great interactive walkthroughs, you need to: determine your key activation points, use 1-2 major actions to drive value, set goals and triggers, and use tooltips and modals to direct users and cheer them on when they complete the onboarding flow.

What is an interactive walkthrough?

An interactive walkthrough provides step-by-step guidance to help users perform the key actions required to use your product and derive the value they signed up for. As opposed to traditional, linear product tours, users trigger the next step as they perform actions.

Interactive walkthroughs focus on one or two key events at a time. Since the users learn by actually doing and are not asked to perform action 2 before taking step 1, interactive walkthroughs take them to value (activation) much faster.

How are interactive walkthroughs used in SaaS?

Interactive walkthroughs are used in SaaS apps to help with the following:

  • New User Onboarding: When new users sign up, these walkthroughs guide them using step-by-step actions to reach value faster before they lose interest in the product.
  • Secondary feature adoption: You don’t want to develop new features that nobody is using. Interactive walkthroughs help companies to accelerate new or secondary feature adoption.
  • Pushing upsells: Every SaaS company is pushing for more revenue. Interactive walkthroughs help your company to push the upsells at later stages of a customer’s journey so that they can upgrade their subscriptions to reflect the added value your product brings to them.
  • Decrease support costs: Interactive walkthroughs help users to figure out things without contacting your support team. This leads to reduced support costs.

Why are interactive walkthroughs important?

  • If new users go into your product and there are no interactive walkthroughs to train them on using the product, most of them will leave.
  • Do you care about your metrics? Not providing a good user onboarding experience that works affects every metric down the line from activation rates, and feature engagement, to product adoption and user retention.
  • To retain users you have to keep driving value even in the later stages of the user journey. New user onboarding is not all there is to onboarding.
  • Interactive walkthroughs will also help you drive adoption rates and improve new feature usage.
  • Studies have shown it is 4x cheaper to upsell existing customers than to acquire new ones. When customers use your product, they need to unlock more value from it over time. This will mostly come in the form of expanded or secondary features in a higher-cost plan. You’ll need to show them additional value using interactive walkthroughs.

What’s the difference between an interactive walkthrough and a product tour?

An interactive walkthrough follows customer behavior where every step in the flow is triggered by a custom event – one action by the user triggers the next step until the flow is complete.

In this case, the users actually interact with the product while learning how to complete specific actions to get the value they need.

On the other hand, product tours are linear and non-interactive; they do not engage the user. Product tours heap a lot of information on the user at one go – showing you around the product from one feature to the next.

By the end of the tour, the user may not have retained anything and has not actually engaged with the product. This makes product tours confusing and boring.

See the example of an email marketing tool onboarding below. I have not actually uploaded my email list in the first step, and it’s already asking me to create my first newsletter – huh?

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