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Kano Analysis

A Kano Analysis is a way of evaluating a product for user satisfaction based on its feature set. A business can realize the biggest gains from its product investment by focusing on the development of user requirements that will differentiate it from competitors. Rather than emphasizing user needs and goals, improving the overall quality of a product, a Kano Analysis focuses on user satisfaction and dissatisfaction as the main success metric.

In a Kano Analysis, features are described with five levels of user satisfaction:

  • Expected — Features that are the bare minimum of what users require.
  • Desired — Features that will make the product competitive.
  • Exciting — Features that delight users and make the product a market leader.
  • Indifferent — Features that do not affect users’ opinions of the product.
  • Reverse — “Anti-features” which turn users away from the product.

A market-leading product will lose its ability to excite over time. Competitors will copy it, and more exciting requirements will come. Innovation, therefore, is a valuable factor in user experience. The Kano Analysis suggests that businesses and designers should value requirements that differentiate a product over those that mimic competitor functionality.

Description

Schedule Time & Gather Materials

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Schedule Time:

  • Time Needed: 2 – 4 Weeks
Gather Materials

Gather Materials:

  • Spreadsheet

Carry Out This Method

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  1. Define what base functionality users expect in your product. (A Competitive Analysis will tell you this.)
  2. Define the features that would excite users, but are not available from your product or a competitor’s. (Perform Ethnography for user insights and conduct one of the ideation methods, such as Empathy Map. Mine your Voice of Customer application for user feedback.)
  3. Document your candidate differentiator functionalities in a spreadsheet and estimate their impact on Key Performance Indicators, such as conversion or use of the Loyalty program. To estimate, you may need to conduct some A/B Testing.
  4. Investigate the feasibility of implementing these differentiating features.
  5. Investigate the payback on investment. (You will need to partner with a Business Analyst to understand financial impacts.)
  6. Add the differentiators to the product pipeline and mark them as differentiators for prioritization.

Try These Tips

  • Finding differentiators should be part of the UX Strategy.

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