Just Right Part 2: Onboarding And Personalization In Blockchain Products

By Kate Garrigan on ALTCOIN MAGAZINE

Kate Garrigan
The Dark Side
Published in
4 min readJul 21, 2019

Previously: Onboarding and app personalization are buzzwords zooming in the blockchain space this year. These features promise to increase retention, adoption, reduce help tickets and generally act as a panacea to all product-ills. But what, exactly, does onboarding entail? Where does app personalization belong in the blockchain technology space?

We discussed onboarding in blockchain products here in Part 1. Now, let’s discuss app personalizations.

App personalization allows for an experience tailored to a specific user. The first things to ask are: Who is my audience? What do they want? How do they want, what they want? How can we give users what they want, how they want it? With those answers, you can create a personalized experience. Take a look at Netflix — they specialize in showing users other content they may want to see, focusing on this as a result of talking to their users. Netflix uses, among other data, what shows you watched, and have saved into lists, to recommend other content. Those recommendations are labeled as such. It changes as time goes on to remain relevant. It’s not always perfect, but Netflix is meeting the users’ stated need for new, relevant content with personalized data.

Users do not want friction. They do not want a distraction, or messaging that’s out of sync with their goals. Nor do they want to feel overlooked by the app or company. In the blockchain space, users also want to remain anonymous. If users do share any personal data, they want to have total control over their data and revoke access to what data they’ve shared, at any point. Communication is still key, especially in the blockchain space where privacy and security are King.

How can you personalize, then?

Talk To Your Users

What do your users want? What settings are helpful for them? Do your users want to make all the decisions, or let you make a couple of assumptions for them? This is key data you will need to successfully create a personalized experience that does not turn users away.

You can still look at any analytics at this point, and combine that information with the needs your users talked about with you. If none of your users are setting or fussing with transaction fee settings, do you need a way to set and forget that setting? If some users want to hold their private keys, and others don’t, how will you account for both? If users keep asking to set a PIN or password for your app, why not?

As you move forward with personalizing the product experience, remember to iterate. Identify some ideas, test them out with users, and move forward.


One of the founding pillars of blockchain technology is transparency — so be transparent with your users. After you’ve gotten to know their users and their expectations, be upfront. If you want to save transaction fee preferences for the user so they can ‘set and forget it’, tell them this. If you need to conduct KYC to provide a user with access to a feature or product, be upfront about what you need, and why. Always make sure the user is prepared for what will happen.


Another blockchain technology pillar is trustlessness — so give your users a reason to trust you. If they want to share their data with you, treat it well. Ensure that you clearly allow users to change or remove data — and make sure you let a user know what, if any, effects that will have on their app experience. Be clear about what you are offering, feature-wise, even if a user chooses not to use some features immediately. If a user revokes access to data, make sure that happens. If a user wants you to keep their data, keep it well.

Give users a reason to trust what you are saying.

Lessons From Traditional Technology

Don’t be afraid to take lessons from traditional technology, either. What are banking apps offering their users? What do certain social media companies do that cause a backlash you’d rather avoid? What experiences do you like in products like Netflix or Amazon? What causes pain? What do your users like and use? What causes them pain?

App personalization is a path to tread down carefully, and with lots of information. This sort of relationship strengths over time, and with proof that data is being treated as the user wishes, and nothing more. Communication is key at every stage of this process.

Your product; app, website or other, can greatly benefit from a finely-tuned onboarding process and thoughtful, responsible app personalization. Talk to your users. Use your information, and don’t be afraid to iterate.

Read Part 1: Onboarding Here