It’s all about not reinventing the wheel.

The cover picture of this Medium post
The cover picture of this Medium post

“Don’t copy other apps. Think outside the box. We want to be innovative.”

That’s a remark I often hear or read. A lot of “visionary” founders want their apps to be unique. To offer a completely new user experience (UX) or concept that will leave everyone blown away.

Tips on how to make something complex look simple

It’s been a few years that I’ve been taking interest in designing complex user forms, where a lot of information is requested from users. Here are a few industries where you regularly find such flows:

  • 🏡 Real estate / Accommodation (e.g. publishing a listing on Airbnb)
  • 💰 FinTech (e.g. sending money with TransferWise)
  • 👩‍💼 LegalTech (claiming a compensation with AirHelp)
  • ☂️ InsurTech (e.g. getting a quote on Lemonade)
  • 🛠 Any kind of repair / home improvement services (e.g. booking an appointment with Puls)

Designing such flows is tricky but important, because while asking a very extensive set of data to…

Using cognitive biases and persuasive patterns to build better products.

Cover picture of my article, with screenshots from the products I’m talking about.
Cover picture of my article, with screenshots from the products I’m talking about.

A few years ago, a colleague of mine introduced the Mental Notes game in my former company (BlaBlaCar). For each feature we were designing, we were gathering with a few product managers, designers and developers in a “behavioral review”, to see how we could apply a few behavioral psychology principles to our project.

An attempt to solve this product manager’s puzzle.

Spreadsheets, GANTT diagrams, Trello boards: The struggle is real.

Over the past 7 years, through several product management roles & freelance projects, I’ve learnt a lot in terms of building product roadmaps. This is one of the most challenging exercises you can be faced as a product manager. Because you have to make sacrifices. And because you’re faced with a lot of pressure, whether it be internally, from other teams, or externally, from your users.

What is a product roadmap?

A product roadmap is…

A great AI-based feature from Amplitude to help you identify personas.

I recently worked for an app which, like many, struggles with retention. After 30 days, its daily retention is lower than 2% and after 4 weeks its weekly retention is lower than 3%. According to Mixpanel, “a good app retention rate depends on the app’s industry, user base, business model, and definition of retention.” In the light of Mixpanel’s studies, an average weekly retention rate can be estimated between 15% (for eCommerce products) and 30% (for SaaS products) after 4 weeks. With my client, we had a 5x to 10x room for improvement to reach their industry average.

Since I switched from full-time employee in tech companies to freelancer over one year ago, I’ve discovered that my life wasn’t mainly about work. I’ve learnt to take a better care of myself. I’ve slept more, I’ve exercised more, I’ve started meditating. I’ve took interest in personal developments topics. I’ve put a strong focus on following my passions in freestyle sports. Lastly, I’ve also let loose and had a lot of fun with my friends.

My golden rules to make sure your product is shipped right.

The Product Manager is often described as the “bridge between business, design and tech”. The bridge “between design and tech” part is especially critical when it comes to shipping a quality product: bug-free, pixel-perfect and that takes into account all possible scenarii and edge cases. To make sure that bridge is functioning well, here’s several ways it’s handled by the design team:

  • The designer ships a comprehensive prototype, that shows all the flows of the product. Unfortunately, this will often times take a lot of time and will still miss a few edge cases.
  • The designer will only ship a…

Seriously, why is it still such a pain?

Booking a flight online isn’t born yesterday. The first airline ticket sold over the web was in 1995, by a Palo Alto-based company called Internet Travel Network. One year later, Microsoft launched its Online Travel Agency (OTA), Expedia. Today, it is the #2 largest OTA in terms of revenue, right behind the group.

Jumping out of Paris’ business district (La Défense), a good enough metaphor of switching from a corporate job to freelancing (Photo by Etienne Boulanger on Unsplash).

Are you getting tired of your 9 to 5? Are you dreaming of another work setup, where you could define your own rules? The switch from full-time employee to freelancer can sometimes be tempting. Just make sure to do it for the right reasons. Here are 5 reasons that I consider to be valid to take the leap:

1. Imposing your own rules

Many freelancers, including me, have decided to set up their own businesses in order to redefine the rules that were imposed on them in their corporate jobs. There are 3 key sets of rules: time (what is your schedule? how long do…

It’s 7:30 pm in Paris. I’m on the metro back to my place, after a stressful day of work. I’m bored. What do I do like the dozens of people around me? I unlock my phone and start scrolling on my Instagram feed for 10 minutes. What is feeding my mind? Posts of yesterday’s gorgeous sunset in Bali, of a delicious €15 açaí bowl from the most hipster brunch place of Paris, and of what seems to be the happiest couple on earth posing at a wedding. Without realizing, I’m automatically rejecting or approving some of the social behaviors suggested…

Lucas Didier

I help startups improve their products through my freelance activity & product managers build better specs with

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store