5 Cloud Tools That Accelerate Product Development

Posted by Nikki Barua Mar 25, 2015 8:45:40 AM

Traditional methods for digital product development aren’t designed for rapid innovation and don’t support a “test-and-learn” approach in shaping the product. The traditional approaches are fraught with risk – you may end up with a product that doesn’t serve your market needs. Whether it’s a mobile app or a website, now you can build better products faster with cutting-edge cloud tools. Here are five cloud tools that we use in our work with major brands: 

1. Hotjar: To gather insights about online behavior


Learn how people actually use your website or app, collect feedback, and turn more visitors into customers. Hotjar is a powerful way to reveal true website user behavior and experiences in one central tool – giving you the big picture of how you can improve your site's user experience and conversion rates. Hotjar puts a wealth of tools at your disposal— heatmaps for tracking user behavior on websites, targeted feedback polls, responsive, real-time surveys, analytics for conversion funnels and online form completion, and visitor recordings that let you see exactly how someone interacted with your site. All your data is securely stored in the cloud and is accessible at lightning speed. 

2. Splunk: To detect patterns from big data


Machine-generated data comprises large swaths of the user experience—everything from clickstream data and call detail records to Web access logs and business process logs, all of which might hold the key to unlocking insights. This data is complex and overwhelming in its scope, but it also holds valuable information if you can sift it efficiently. Splunk is a big data tool for detecting patterns in extremely large data sets, understanding product usability, and customer activity across different channels. 

3. Candor: To generate ideas and make decisions


Candor helps groups generate ideas and make difficult decisions. Candor works by decoupling the generation of ideas from the evaluation of ideas. Candor generates more diverse or creative ideas because people don’t get fixated on the first idea that’s put on the table, avoiding the problems of idea anchoring and clustering. People’s candid, unbiased views come to light because they generate ideas free of social pressure. Reviewing all the ideas at the beginning of the meeting gives everyone a voice, maximizing the creative potential in the room. Candor is extremely efficient. Consequently, you can spend less time in meetings and more time getting things done. Because this is far more efficient process, a lot more ideas are put on the table.

4. InVision: To express ideas visually and gather feedback


InVision is a rapid prototyping tool that takes you from idea to reality at light speed. Using interactive prototypes, you can implement design changes to an app or a website in seconds, while tracking user feedback in real time. InVision allows you to manage design projects effectively and streamline feedback and team communication. InVision gives teams the freedom to design, review, and user test products — all without a single line of code. With intuitive tools for prototyping, task management, and version control, it's your entire design process, all in one place.

5. AppThwack: To test your app across hundreds of devices


AppThwack allows teams to quickly and automatically test Android, iOS, and Web apps on hundreds of real devices. Just upload your app, configure test parameters, and select devices. After uploading an app, AppThwack automatically installs it on real phones and tablets you select, launches, explores, stresses, and uninstalls it, gathering results, low-level logs, screenshots, and performance data along the way. This tool provides a great way to evaluate your app performance in a highly fragmented device landscape.

Not only do these tools accelerate product development, they also help you mitigate against needless risk. The tools we use regularly empower our own teams to make better decisions that result in products more closely aligned with the needs of both the brand and the customer. What are your favorite cloud tools for digital product development? To learn more about how BeyondCurious can help you accelerate product development, contact us at hello@beyondcurious.com.

Topics: BeyondCurious, productivity, data, user testing, innovation@speed, Art of Innovation

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