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Introducing Guide Throttling & Ordering

Here at Pendo, we spend a lot of time talking about the value of targeting the in-app messages that you show to your users.  Targeting is valuable for two important reasons: One ensures that the messages you’re putting in front of your users are specifically relevant to them (i.e you’re not announcing admin-level features to users who don’t have privileges to use them), and two to ensure that you’re not ever over-messaging them.  (Making users click through multiple guides at once is definitely not a UX improvement).

Sometimes, however, even the best targeting strategy can still result in users getting multiple messages at once.  This problem can be exacerbated when you have multiple teams authoring guides in your product.  We instituted a Guide Swat Team process internally that helps to coordinate, but it’s also important to have a failsafe in place to protect the product experience.  Today, we rolled out a new Guide Throttling feature to help Pendo customers better manage their guide display cadence.

Manage in-App Guide Cadence with Time-based Throttling

Guide Throttling works by allowing you to set a minimum time interval between guides shown to any user in your product.  So for example, if you set a 15-minute interval – even if the user was accidentally targeted with two automatic pop-up messages at once, he or she would be shown one immediately, and the second one 15 minutes later.  With time interval-based throttling no messages are lost, they are simply spaced out to ensure that your users aren’t ever overwhelmed.

Set Viewing Priority to Serve Your Most Important Guides First

Working in conjunction with this time-based cadence is Guide Ordering.  The ordering system, simply lets you set the priority for any automatically activated message (one that pops up without any user action) in your application.  When messaging conflicts arise where a user might be shown more than one guide at once, the guide with the highest priority will be shown first, and those with lower priorities will be shown after the throttling interval has passed.

What About Urgent Updates?

Sometimes you might have a very high priority message like an outage, scheduled maintenance, or some account issues that you need to make sure gets in front of users right away.  For situations like this, you can override guide throttling to show this message to targeted uses regardless of other guides that are targeted to them.  When a guide is set to override it will always be shown first if a user is currently targeted with more than one automatic guide.

Guide throttling is available now in Pendo, and can be accessed in the new “Guide Ordering” tab in the guides list.  Note that this feature requires version 2.8.0 or higher of the Pendo Agent.


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