The Cowabunga lifestyle; a retrospective on the Pizza Hut App Redesign Experience

If you’re an 80s kid, I know you wanted to be one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. They were few years older than me and the epitome of coolness. Michaelangelo was one of my many childhood crushes (I was hypothetically slutty as a kid). 7 year old me thought walking around in a shell with coloured mask is cool.

But what I love about the Ninja Turtles, is more than their totally naked kinda-safe-for-children sculpted bodies (morals were looser for kids in the 80s), heartthrob doorknob-like faces and feet with less than 5 toes. I was jealous of their constant pizza-eating. In every episode, they or at least Michaelangelo will stuff their faces in pepperoni pizza (turtles eat pig, who knew). This ritual usually takes place after their well-fought battles. As such, pizza eating is synonymous with victorious group bonding, fun time and pleasant winning memories. And, Pizza Hut knew that.

Of course, Pizza Hut knew that. Why else would they anchor their business strategy gearing towards family/friends group dining?

With that in mind, we chose Pizza Hut pizzas to order for our class cohesion few weeks ago. During the ordering process, some iPhones were close to be almost thrown to the wall. So, for our group project, we chose Pizza Hut (Singapore) App to be redesign simply because it is a pathetic, sad app. At one point, I was so sure Adam Sandler created this app. Sumukh definitely agrees with me.

Reviews from Social Media platforms

The Challenge

To redesign a mobile app; our challenge is to increase the usability of the app of our choice i.e Pizza Hut (Singapore) App. I have to emphasise that the American version of the app seems to look so much better. It is in sync with the whole current Pizza Hut global website branding. Singapore’s version, however, looks like it was from 2008, the year US government approved the consumption of cloned Dollys. Yes, both are equally hard to digest, yet one of them is still surviving till 2017.

Our User Research & Data

It is obvious sadism is one of our traits, so we tried out the app again but this time to scrutinise its flaws and measly strengths. We visualise a storyboard to imagine how a common user might feel when using the app.

It’s not your usual storyboard because I’m not your usual person. Deal with it.

As you can see, we imagine the user will be frustrated regarding the registration process just like we felt every time we touched that app.

Competitors’ Analysis

We looked at several competitors and completed the heuristic evaluation for all (including Pizza Hut).

Back to our research process; so we started out by interviewing several people whom are food app users. We wanted to mine their food app habits and understand their likes and pet peeves when it comes to fast food app. Our findings are:

  1. Users are casual food delivery app users. They prefer using mobile phones than desktop when ordering.
  2. As they order for casual meals and not celebrations, they look out for promotions to make their meals value for money. Most of them are also buying for families frequently.

From the data we mined out of our users, we dived into affinity mapping.

From the affinity mapping, we created 3 personas.

So, who do you relate more? Although personally I’m more like Casper, our user data mostly relate to May. Thus, we used her as the main persona. In our prototype, we used her persona closely to anchor our user flow.

Next, we created Customer Journey Mapping to exemplify how a user feels throughout the ordering process. From a glance, one can view a user’s pain points easily at every stage.

Something that I found a bit hard to understand was the prioritization matrix. Features prioritisation in its literal meaning sense is understandable but the matrix was slightly confusing to me. However, Kelly and Danica were better at this than I am and they mapped out the matrix easily. I would say this part is my weakest point and I would need to read more to understand it better.

From here, the problems reached out to us.

Problem #1

The registration process was too long. 12 fields vs 3–4 fields for its competitors.

Problem #2

Although pizza size was stated, its term sounded vague to users.

Problem #3

Most food delivery app users do not want to keep the app in their phone. They prefer to use the app and discard it after the process. That long registration process does not make things better.

Designing the App

Now, our focus is mainly to reduce the extremely long and tedious registration process. The original app demands 12 fields for user to input. That is way too much to put through a hungry user. We needed to remove the unnecessary fields to make the flow smoother. After working out the user flow, we tested the wireframe to ascertain the sign up process clearly.

One problem we had was to decide at which stage shall we request for the delivery address. I’ve never thought something that is so banal can be so significant! This shows how we’re used to conventional ways and the line between habit and design-effectiveness is blurred.

As I’m an active UberEats user, we kept referring to it to compare the process. We also looked at Dominos and McDonalds for ideas on the stage to request for delivery address. Both McD and UberEats requests for the address upfront, while Dominos asks when user reaches the Order button stage. We ended up requesting for delivery address and time delivery at the main page. The reason is because we were reminded of our experience during the cohesion whereby after going through the ordering process for almost half an hour, the staff informed us that our address is off-grid to be delivered. This was frustrating for us and we do not want our users to feel the same way. As such, requesting the address early in the process will avoid such frustrations.

User Testing

We finally conducted user testing to test out our prototype. From there, we discovered few glitches that needed to be straighten out but there were some areas that we have improved.

  1. We offered $10 discount if users sign up. Additionally, after ordering, there were only 2 fields left to be completed. As such, it was a hassle-free process which tempted the users to continue to sign up.
  2. The size of the pizzas and the number of pax they’re for are clearly stated.
  3. Delivery notification and time delivery was easy to understand

Iterations

  1. The search function was altered so that users can see the promos clearly, inputting their address to ensure they’re not off-grid for delivery and to set time for advance booking. This was because the postal code’s function was vague to the users.
  2. The menu was updated by items to display content instead of navigating them by categories.
  3. We showed the benefits of signing up as members upfront to entice users to continue their ordering process to the sign-up.
  4. Removal of delivery status in the main page, as it was being featured countless times.

Reflection

The next step for us is to test out the latest protoype to more users in a bid to improve the app further. It would also be beneficial for us to present our findings and prototype to the stakeholders in the business.

Working with my group members revealed to me my shortcomings. They picked up my blind spots and improved on them. As a person with an artistic background, this experience was an eye-opener. I got the chance to see a more methodical and logical approach as opposed to my chaotic way of solving a problem. I would definitely adopt their process to further enhance my own process when solving UX problems.