User flows are paths that users follow through an experience. Flows aren’t necessarily linear, and can branch out in different paths.
For example, users can take many potential paths within the user flow of researching products online to buy. They may conduct multiple queries on search engines, which then brings them to blogs, which eventually links to an eCommerce store to buy the product. Another user may click through an ad for the same product and land directly on the eCommerce store.
(Notice how there are several paths a person can take to accomplish each goal. These different paths = user flows.)
Designers analyzing and crafting these user flows in order to optimize the overall user experience. As such, user flows can be thought of as mini user journeys.« Back to Glossary Index