Träffa: An app that allows you to find events, related to leisure and education, that cater to your personality type along with your social interests. Through a reward system, and ample information on the events, you are presented with events that suit your specific personality traits, but also pushes you to step out of your comfort zone.
As part of the UX essentials course at Red Academy, we were given a task in which we had to identify a problem that our partner has that we could attempt to solve through an App. At first, the task seemed very overwhelming. I had to try to uncover a problem that a person I had never met has, based on the simplest set of questions, in the hope that out of a question such as “how is your work life”, an extensive description of a problem would reveal itself.
The process started with drafting out an interview foundation in which I made up questions based on 3 sections: work life, social life and daily life. Through these, I uncovered certain area of distress in my partner’s life, such as the need to be a part of activities outside the work place, personality traits that stop you from easily socializing or going to big events (such as introverted personality, and anxiousness), and the inability to make friends this easily in places outside of school and work.
Through these 3 areas in the interview process, I was able to delve more on specific aspects of her life that she might have problems in, such as socializing, her work life, and any patterns I noticed in her daily life. The results from my interview helped me focus her pain points on a mix of work life and social life. When talking about her new job as an Accountant, the interview helped uncover the things she likes and dislikes about working a 9–5 corporate job. Because my partner has just recently graduated from school, we also spoke about he frustrations she deals with when transitioning from a school environment to a work one, and how this has impacted her participation in social activities.
As a result, the last section of my interview, social life, helped tie everything together. My partner actively looks for activities that cater to her interests outside of her work setting, but is too anxious and nervous to assist general group settings and wishes that searching for activities online were not as overwhelming as they are now. Through these results, I was then able to create a persona, to which my app is targeted towards.
After the interview, I looked into some of the competitor apps that address similar things to what I want to achieve through my app. Although there are a dozen different apps that help you find events in the area, or even people to befriend and explore the city with, the two apps that seem to do this best are Meetup and Eventbrite. Most of the apps out there, especially these two, focus and celebrate the fact that everyone has different interests (social interests). What they don’t focus on is that along with these social interests, human beings might also have personality differences that affect their day to day activities, and their choices when it comes to what to be involved in.
When looking at the pro’s and cons of these apps, I realized they follow a similar structure, where the user creates a profile(either once or for every event they sign up for) and is able to search based on the interests they want their events to be based on. However, the events rarely have enough information, the kind that an introverted person might want to know before assisting. They also lack the personal touch, where the person assisting can feel the human connection they are seeking for. Much of these apps don’t have a commitment method (payment method), which leads to 2/100 people who signed up, to show up. Most of the problems faced with this, all have to do with the lack of consideration of personality types. This is where Träffa comes in. Through the personalization of experiences, beyond personal interests, the user is able to filter through events, find all the information that makes them feel secure and motivated to go, and can ensure and access the people who are attending.
After conducting research on the competitor apps, I was able to brainstorm my ideas for the app, and divide them into must haves, nice to have, and could haves. This helped me focus on my minimal viable product. My must haves focused on having a personal profile with personality based preferences, as well as interest based preferences. In addition, I decided to add in a reward system where users would gain points on the type of activities they attend. If they attend activities outside their comfort zone (the preferences they set before), they earn more points).
Based on the affinity diagram, I set out a user flow based on my primary flow highlighting the ‘must haves’. In this, the user creates a new account, sets up their profile, and searches between education and leisure based activities. On the event page, they are able to access all the information they need, especially checking how many people are attending (a number that keeps updating). Finally, the end and sign up to the event by paying on the app itself, ensuring commitment to the event.
After creating sketches, and turning these into my first paper prototype. I conducted a usability study in which participants were given a specific task to carry out.
TASK: You are a new user that is looking only for leisure based events for your leisure based interests. As an introvert, you are shy and anxious and you enjoy small grouped events.
Below you can find a link to the low-fidelity paper prototype walkthrough.
USABILITY TEST RESULTS
I then conducted a usability test on two users, where based on the task given they had to navigate through the prototype and state what they think/do through the think-aloud technique. This allowed me to find patterns through the qualitative results I gathered, and quantify some of this information in order to find problems and possible changes to the app:
Qualitative Results: Patterns found in the data from both users
Personal Details Page: adding a picture (both users were skeptical about this)
-“If it’s not social media I wouldn’t add a pic” — USER 2
-“Pictures make me feel self conscious, It usually takes too much time to decide on one” -USER 1
Payment Method: confused about the necessity to pay “I don’t want to give my payment info right away” — USER 2
-“Do I have to pay for the app? I’d probably exit out” -USER 1
Filters in search: worked well: very accessible and flexible
-“I like that there’s more room to narrow down your search ” — USER 2
-“How do i go back to the personal profile page/ does this apply to everything (leisure and education tabs?” -USER 1
Different Pages: confused about what to do under each page/what each page is for
-“what am I supposed to do here” — USER 2
-“Oh I thought adding interests means I was already searching” -USER 1
Event Page: Points system was intriguing but required explanation “I like working up to something but wasn’t clear enough that that was happening until the end” — USER 2
“How do I check how many points I have? Can i access my profile again during the search process? ” -USER 1
Event Page: Event information “Payment method should be asked after you sign up for your first event- with the option to save it” USER 1
“How do I know that the event is paid before I sign up” — USER 2
“Connect with FB option is confusing? What is it used for? USER 2
“Make it easy to toggle between education and leisure = slide instead of button press” USER 1
“make sure that the event page has number of people attending ” -USER 1
WHAT WORKED WELL:
- Type of Event
- Introvert/extrovert options
- nickname/username option makes it personal
- What are you looking for options
- More filters for your search
- Points and rewards and confirmation page
- Categorization and organization of events into education and leisure
- The different options in personal profile
- Time filter in the search = very flexible
- Points page
- Confirmation Page
After testing the prototype on two users and analyzing the quantitative and qualitative data, I was able to further refocus my idea towards the user needs. As a result, I created a second prototype correcting these issues.
Interact with the digital prototype (low/med-fi) here:
SUMMARY AND NEXT STEPS
PROBLEM: Searching for interest-specific events around you can be hard and overwhelming, especially for people with different personality types. You never know what kind of people assist the events, or whether they are going to show up at all
SOLUTION: Created a more inclusive and reliable interface that considers the needs of users with different personality types along with different interests.
Overall, through the usability testing, I was able to fix problems of functionality as well as user-friendliness. In addition, the user’s needs were further understood based on the different personality types, and what features of the app would work well and which wouldn’t.
- Test out the new (Marvel) prototype through another usability test. This time testing it out on at least 5 people in order to be able to gather 80% of the problems.
- Taking these results and analyzing the quantitative and qualitative patterns, create a digital prototype (Med-Fi) using Sketch.
- This will then be ready to test out again, collect the data necessary and work my way up to a high fidelity prototype.
Check out more of my projects at: https://harpekhnamahajan.com/