What Is a Product Engagement Score?

Product engagement score, or PES, measures how users interact with a product.

PES brings into sharp focus three key metrics—product adoption, stickiness (i.e., repeated usage), and growth. Centering on these critical metrics deepens an organization’s understanding of the customer experience.

How Is PES Calculated?

A product engagement score is the average of the values for adoption, stickiness, and growth. Follow these steps to calculate your product’s PES:

Step 1: Identify the values for product adoption, stickiness, and growth.

Step 2: Add those three values together.

Step 3: Divide that number by three.

          (Product Adoption + Stickiness + Growth)
     _____________________________________    =   Product Engagement Score

That’s it! This number is your product’s PES. It’s also a place to launch a deeper investigation into how and where users are interacting (or not interacting) with your product.

Why PES Is Important

Because a product engagement score is an average of adoption, stickiness, and growth, it can be a valuable tool in clarifying the “why” behind low engagement. Moreover, armed with this insight, product teams are better able to identify strategic opportunities to increase the value a product delivers to users and improve product engagement.

PES isn’t always straightforward, however. Nuances exist that need exploration to create a clearer picture of engagement. Here’s a good example of the questions a product team should ask in order to uncover a greater understanding of engagement:

“When you understand and analyze how your customers are engaging with your product, you can find the features that are being underutilized. Are they not used because they aren’t useful, or because you aren’t communicating or documenting them well enough? When you look at the customer’s process as they work through your system, is there anything you can do to make that workflow easier for them? You can find a solution when you understand product engagement. And improving them will maximize your customer’s usage, leading to happier customers who stick around.” (from ProfitWell’s product engagement guide)

Here are 9 ways to make your product stick from the start.

Tips for Increasing Your Product Engagement Score

Here are a few questions to help you dig deeper to uncover opportunities to improve your PES:

  1. Are your product adoption and growth metrics where they need to be?
  2. Which product features deliver the highest value? When do customers interact with them? Create opportunities (e.g., by introducing in-app messages) to guide users to the best aspects of the product.
  3. Does your product align with and support the user’s workflow? Understanding customer use and solving customer problems are the bedrock of product adoption. If you aren’t solving a customer’s problem, you just might be creating a new one for users.
  4. Is your onboarding process up to the task of getting users up and running–and more importantly, seeing value–right away?
  5. Are you overlooking customer feedback?

Of course, making direct improvements to the three key metrics used to calculate PES–adoption, stickiness, and growth–will certainly impact your score, so don’t overlook opportunities to strengthen those areas first.

Related Terms:

product launch / product adoption / retention / product metrics / user experience (UX) / customer experience (CX) / product-led growth