Bikeshedding is prioritizing minor details over key project issues.

What it is

Bikeshedding refers to the tendency to spend excessive time and energy on trivial matters, often overlooking important ones. It's a phenomenon where a group has lengthy discussions about minor details, while more complex or urgent topics are being ignored or postponed. This often happens because trivial topics are easier to understand or have a personal impact on the participants, making them more likely to contribute to those discussions.

How to use it

1. Using Bikeshedding in A/B Testing

Bikeshedding, the process of spending excessive time over minor details, can be used in A/B testing to increase conversions. A tech startup could engage in detailed discussions about seemingly minor aspects of their website or app, such as the color of a CTA button, the position of a signup form, or the wording of a headline. By testing different variations of these minor details, the startup could identify which versions lead to the highest conversion rates. This approach requires a significant investment of time and resources, but it can lead to significant improvements in conversion rates.

2. Using Bikeshedding in User Experience Design

Another potential application of Bikeshedding in a tech startup is in the field of user experience design. The startup could spend a great deal of time discussing and testing different design elements, such as the layout of a menu, the placement of buttons, or the color scheme. By focusing on these minor details, the startup could create a more engaging and intuitive user experience, which could lead to increased user retention and engagement.

3. Using Bikeshedding in Content Creation

Bikeshedding can also be used in the creation of content for a tech startup's website or blog. The team could spend a lot of time discussing and refining the wording, tone, and structure of each piece of content. This detailed focus on content creation could help the startup create more engaging and effective content, which could improve SEO, increase website traffic, and boost conversions.

4. Using Bikeshedding in Email Marketing Campaigns

Another way that Bikeshedding could be used to increase conversions, retention, and engagement for a tech startup is through email marketing campaigns. The startup could spend a lot of time discussing and refining the design and content of their emails, including the subject line, the layout, the call to action, and the timing of the emails. By focusing on these minor details, the startup could optimize their email marketing campaigns and boost their conversion rates.

5. Using Bikeshedding in Social Media Strategy

Finally, Bikeshedding could be applied to a tech startup's social media strategy. The startup could spend a lot of time discussing and refining the details of their social media posts, such as the wording, the timing, the hashtags, and the images. This detailed focus on social media strategy could help the startup increase their social media engagement, build their brand, and attract more customers.

Want to learn more?

Decoding the Why explores how high growth companies can integrate the power of behavioral science to unlock product & go-to-market strategies.

Use promo code Patent355 to receive a free eBook and Kindle copy.

get free copy
Cover of Decoding the Why book

More Behavioral Design Theories

Illusory Correlation

Perception of a relationship between unrelated phenomena or variables.

Observer Expectancy Effect

Subconscious influence of observers' expectations on subjects' behavior.

Base Rate Fallacy

Over-reliance on specific information over general probability statistics.

Hyperbolic Discounting

Preference for immediate rewards over larger, delayed benefits.

Look-elsewhere Effect

Human tendency to seek alternatives when results don't meet expectations.

The Sunk Cost Fallacy

An irrational commitment to past investments influencing current decisions.