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Hope you're all healthy and safe. A redesigned version of a product is recently launched and we've been hearing negative reviews. In order to redesign the product, we followed a thorough process; investigate the existing version with users (user testing, tree testing, etc), detect issues, review literature & best practices, drive insights and set principles, apply them to new design concept and test it with user again to ensure the acceptance of the concept. The results were promising and the concept was approved. So, the development started...

There could be many reasons for these negative reactions such as no ability to reflect all the concepts at the first product launch due to technical matters or last-minute business changes that could violate the consistency or compensations on design during development... However, I would like to ask if you have had any experience such, a product launch facing resistance, or do you know any case studies or academic backup for this situation.

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    How was your change management process? Did you offer feature toggles (let the user decide "new experience" or "old experience"?) Was there onboarding to show the user how to quickly find the items they're used to using? Most of my experience with negativity toward a redesign has come from users reacting viscerally to change, even if the new experience is a lot better. It usually goes away on its own after they learn the new UI and flows.
    – Izquierdo
    Dec 16, 2020 at 23:29
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    'Change aversion' is quite common but can be more severe with certain audiences or industries. library.gv.com/…
    – Martyn
    Dec 16, 2020 at 23:38
  • People cope better with little incremental 'improvements' rather than big changes.
    – PhillipW
    Dec 18, 2020 at 17:00

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an application portal which I have been using for one year recently did an overhaul about 4 months back. The new version of the portal looked more visually appealing and made reading easier.

However, very poor mapping was done migrating functions in the old version to the new one, and the new version has broken features, bugs and other issues aside.

When we feedback to the service provider, they place a “switch back to older version” button on the portal. This was available about one month after the new version was launched. They also put a “beta version” label on the new version since the launch.

There are a few learning points from the experience I had as a user. I hope this answers your question partially.

  1. if you have a new version of an application, mapping of features from the old version to the new one is very important, don’t neglect the current users on what they are used to doing with the application
  2. to manage user expectations, it does help to claim the new version in beta and keep the old version accessible - the log analysis of users returning to old versions will show how much your users like the new version
  3. do not expect users to find the bugs for you. In my experience on this case, I had to point out where the bugs and broken features were, and it felt that these issues should have been sorted out during alpha testing. It’s not very professional of them to roll out the new version when there are broken features.
  4. most times users need time to adapt to the new version. If mapping is done properly and users like the new version, the log analysis will show less undo actions or back button being used, and overall user engagement activities on the application will increase
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  • Thanks for your comment :)
    – Izzie
    Dec 17, 2020 at 15:52

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