I am designing an onboarding/registration process for a mobile app/service that has fairly restrictive qualification requirements.

Over time, these requirements will be come substantially less restrictive, but our MVP will only provide functionality for a small subset of users.

My question is composed of a few parts:

  1. Understanding that all users will eventually be able to benefit from this application/service, does it make most sense to alert people as soon as we realize they don't qualify, or do we let them finish inputing everything and then tell them?
  2. Depending on the answer to Part 1., Is it better to order the form such that you ask the most general (least restrictive questions) first, or should you filter out non-qualifying users as soon as you know how to reach them once they qualify?

For the process as I currently have it, please refer to this flow diagram:

Flow Diagram

  • Welcome to the site, @Dan! For a Q&A site like this, it works best if each post has one key question. Explicit requests for lists of resources tend not to work very well because there's no one clear answer (although good answers will cite relevant resources without it being written out in the question). I've edited your post to focus it more narrowly on your question. If you feel I've changed the meaning, you're welcome to edit it back. Commented Apr 11, 2016 at 19:09
  • Thanks for the welcome @GrahamHerrli and I appreciate the edit! Commented Apr 11, 2016 at 20:26

2 Answers 2


As you will already have the mobile number, go for the most restrictive questions first in order to prevent frustration and avoid a negative experience on the first contact with the company/brand/product.

At the point of the 'not qualified' notification, then you could ask if they would like to be notified when they qualify. This would workaround data protection issues (not sure where you are based, but you will probably need consent to contact/use their data), and let them know that it is not 'over yet' at the same time :)

As per 'valuable market data', you would eventually get it when the user fully qualifies. I know the business might keep putting pressure on data capture but you need to balance whether the experience would be bad enough for them not to want to hear back from you/move on to competitor - you would then have the data but not the customer!

  • Your'e welcome. I'm glad it helps.
    – RBH
    Commented Jul 13, 2016 at 16:02

It seems as though the main objectives you have are to get users into the system with the hope that when the product will support them, they will actually use it. So, my advice would be to:

  1. gather the absolute minimum amount of information required to create a user (perhaps username/email/mobile number and password)
  2. begin with most restrictive questions and let someone know as quickly as possible that they do not yet qualify

I believe this is a good option is because it allows you to get the user onto the system so that you can notify them when they are able to use the product, but it doesn't make them answer questions that they don't need to.

Hope this helps!

  • You'll notice in the diagram above that users are prompted to create an account immediately after the welcome slideshow. Account creation consists of a valid mobile number and a password, meaning that we already know we can reach a user, and how, almost immediately. As such, the question of will we have enough info to contact a user if they do not currently qualify is (hopefully) moot. Rather, the question is after we know we can get in touch with a user if they do not qualify, how much should we ask of them before we tell them that they do not... Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:25
  • You'll notice that in the answer I gave, I was saying that once you can get in touch with a user the objective is to disqualify them as quickly as possible. What do you gain by asking them questions that are not presently necessary?
    – jnishiyama
    Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:34
  • My thinking was that they will have to fill out all of the info eventually, so whether they fill it out now, or later it doesn't really matter unless there is some kind of consequence on evetual conversion. On the other hand, it helps us enormously to have all the information because it provides valuable market data Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 17:01

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