Tooltips: Your Secret Weapon for Improving Feature Discovery

Sofia Quintero
Jan 10 · 7 min read

What Are Tooltips?

Tooltips are a type of in-app messaging pattern that highlight a product’s features or functionality by drawing the user’s attention to the feature in question. Oftentimes, tooltips are presented as self-contained, on-screen messages that appear when a user hovers their mouse cursor (or finger, in the case of mobile apps) over an application’s various navigational elements in the user interface (UI).

Facebook

Facebook’s UI has changed enormously in recent years. It may have retained its dark-blue color palette (chosen due to the color blue’s connotations of security and trustworthiness), but little else remains of Facebook’s earlier incarnations. As the largest social media platform in the world, Facebook is constantly experimenting with new features, all of which require at least some introduction and explanation.

Twitter

Like Facebook, microblogging platform Twitter has undergone some pretty dramatic UI changes. In recent years, Twitter has also introduced a range of new features, including the ability to embed GIFs natively in tweets — one of Twitter’s most popular features.

Tooltips and Tricks

You may have noticed that all of the tooltips featured in the examples above are for singular, momentary in-app messages. Many software applications and products rely on multi-stage tooltips to teach users how to navigate and use the app. Although this can work as an onboarding technique, tooltips are best suited for their original function: to provide users with brief, helpful messages to ensure users get the most value from an app.


Hungry for Insight

A community for product people leading change

Sofia Quintero

Written by

Founder and CEO at https://getenjoyhq.com/

Hungry for Insight

A community for product people leading change