Divvy Bikes

UXDI Project 3 Case Study

Divvy is well known to the bike sharing community, but they have not gained as much mainstream reach as they would like. Divvy believes that there may be opportunity to increase awareness of their brand through providing value added content to new bike sharers. They want to do this by providing an application with real utility for this market.

Time Frame: 2 weeks

Tools Used: Pen & paper, Google Survey, Sketch (wireframing), Invision (prototype), Illustrator, Keynote

Challenge: Offer value-added content to retain first time users & increase mainstream use

Solution: Investigate how Divvy can attract & retain new users, design a mobile app, research service changes that would support the design implementation

Our contextual research involved observations & interviews at several Divvy locations, with a variety of people: users, nonusers, tourists and locals.

We also sent out a Google survey specifically for Chicago residents. In total we gathered information from about 40 individuals.

research quotes
users either don’t bike in the city at all, or are very comfortable biking in the city

From our research we gathered a lot of useful information, helping to form our insights:

  1. Potential users are interested in trying Divvy, but they are afraid they will be hurt or embarrassed.
  2. Potential users keep their familiar routine because they don’t realize the mind/body benefits of biking.
  3. Regular users enjoy the mind/body benefits of riding and want freedom to bike faster and without time constraints.


We formed 3 different personas, all of which identified with our various user groups.

Danielle became our main focus, because like most users she was afraid to bike in the city, therefore avoided it.

How could we help Danielle feel safer biking in the city?

Danielle links with Insight #1

Beth was our next important user, she was less concerned with safety and more concerned with being able to bike distance. She was comfortable in her routine of taking the train but wanted to add something to it.

How could we help Beth feel motivated to help improve her daily routine.

Beth links with Insight #2

Design Direction

We decided that our design should make users and potential users feel safe, motivated and free when interacting with Divvy.


From our ideation we were able to brainstorm ideas for a solution for each user. We wanted our app to have

  1. a station map
  2. a route planner
  3. hands free navigation

Prototype 1

For our first prototype we decided to create a paper prototype. This way we would save time and make sure we were on the right path from the get-go.

user testing prototype 1

“Awesome! I want to know where the bike lanes are because I’m worried about safety.”

From this first round of testing we found out some key things.

  1. The bike lanes only option made them feel safer
  2. Ability to compare different routes made riding more convenient
  3. Users wanted to be able to buy a pass in the app
  4. Some buttons were confusing, causing user flow to suffer

Prototype 2

user testing prototype 2

“Ooh, I like this. I’ve always wondered how many calories I burn riding Divvy.”

From our second prototype we learned:

  1. maps and interface was easy to use because style and icons were similar to other apps
  2. route options made them feel safer/hands free nav easy to see and use
  3. the directions page was confusing & small buttons were hard to see, therefore deemed useless
  4. unclear on when to mount phone onto bike
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