Reimagine your core product

Written by Margaret Kelsey, and originally published on InVision’s blog

How do you redesign a core product from scratch while keeping in mind all the things your customers love about it?

We invited Thomas Stovicek, Head of Design at OpenTable, to talk to us about just that. He used Guest Center, OpenTable’s restaurant-facing product, as a case study to explain what led to a successful launch and ongoing release schedule of an updated platform.

“OpenTable’s Thomas Stovicek on what led to a successful launch of an updated platform.”

Watch the full recording below, or read on for our highlights from Thomas’s talk.

Tips and tricks to redefine the core experience of your brand

Thomas had a unique challenge: diners use OpenTable’s app and website to make reservations, and restaurants use OpenTable’s product Guest Center to take reservations, check in, and take customer notes.

Before its redesign, Guest Center was already an industry leading tool that restaurants had been using for more than a decade. It also was robust enough to handle many use cases, and the information it collected was dense. All this had to be taken into account for the redesign.

Ask yourself: what is it that you’re going to build?

Thomas outlined 4 prompts that help designers decide what they’re going to build:

  1. Define the core values of the brand. Even though you’re reimagining your product, don’t accidentally eliminate the things that keep people using your product and loving it.
  2. Figure out what needs improvement. Especially if you haven’t worked on the product in a while, there will certainly be areas in need of attention.
  3. Pinpoint things that are no longer relevant to your users. Determine what parts of the product are no longer necessary so you can strengthen what users do want and need.
  4. Take advantage of new technology. For example, Guest Center moved from a larger touchscreen device to a mobile iPad. The difference in touch technology made the product incredibly more responsive. Advancements in technology can greatly improve your UX.

Thomas also went over how to figure out how much to initially build. For that and more details on defining what to build, I encourage you to watch the video above!

Originally published at on February 19, 2016.

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