Product Design - Social Networking App
JoinMe is an application which lets the user search, create, or join sports activities based on the user’s location and preferences. Using contacts from social media platforms such as Facebook, and fitness apps such Strava, MapMyFitness, and Google Fitness, it can create a profile, importing user data in order to match up the user with a suitable group of similar ability.
Currently sports clubs and individuals resort to disparate and unwieldy social media platforms, such as Facebook and Whatsapp, to create and organise sporting activities such as cycling or running. My idea was to create a social networking application centered around sports; where an individual user or club can organise, browse, and participate in sporting activities.
Working together with an international team, we firstly created empathy maps based on personal experiences within the team, involvement in sports activities with others, and feedback gained through networking in this area. Then we generated a number of personas and scenarios based on assumptions of the target user group.
Mapping User Journey
While we were defining all the features through user stories, I was also building and modifying the information architecture according to our defined personas. This helped us to simplify and organise the content to improve the navigation and user workflow.
Wireframes were created based on initial ideas, competitor analysis, popular social networking sites and user experience research.
User Testing (Build, Measure & Learn)
Phase 1 - Testing Wireframes
Surveys were setup to target market identified through social media apps and Google Analytics. Face to face interviews with our own wider networks of sports people and organisers were setup. This allowed us to collect & analyse data gathered. Then refining the features, personas, scenarios, empathy maps and our business model canvas based on feedback.
Phase 2 - Usability Testing
Setting up and conducting open and closed questions via interviews. Observations were also setup both indirect & direct. After completing testing, we collected and quantified data and then iterated on the prototype.
Phase 3 - App Feedback
Monitoring App downloads, upgrades and analytics. Setting up in-app surveys and continuing to iterate on features and architecture. Prioritising new feature releases and monitoring net promoter score.
Using UI patterns and mental models used in popular social apps as a starting point: eg Strava, Map- MyRide, Facebook and Whatsapp, then iterating based on feedback, allowed us to fine tune important design elements. This enabled users to have a better understanding of how things will work and increasing their efficiency.
The design of the interface allows the user to focus on what is most important. The size, color, and placement of each element works together, creating a clear path to understanding in the interface reducing the appearance of complexity.