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Concept, Design, Flow, Wires, IxD, VD

Problem: Users were finding it difficult to keep track of their conversations via both text & email

The Shopbolt Web Application was created as a simple, thorough tool for shopper take the hard work out of shopping. However, not having a consolidated way to stay in touch with your shopping assistant deemed to be a problem. I was tasked with creating a mobile application that translated the appropriate amount of information and resources over to a central mobile solution. This would ensure a substantial user payout and take the hassle out of keeping your conversation on track.

Hypothesis: Shoppers would benefit from a comprehensive mobile experience readily available in the palms of their hands

I went through each feature in the desktop application and gathered the ones that would be the most relevant. I left out information that I felt was not needed immediately on the app in order to stay on budget.
My strategy for what to focus on broke down into three areas:

  • User information that was needed to be captured in order to benefit from using the app: User info (sign up) credit card info, shipping & billing address.
  • Order history features that would be useful on mobile: Last order made, reordering, receipts, order tracking, etc
  • Per the original scope of the mobile app from the client, we created a chat feature where users can interact with their shopbolt shoppers and have all their conversations in one convenient location.

User Feedback: Users liked the service but was frustrated with not being able to keep track of conversations

With limited resources allocated for user research, the feedback for version 1.0 was light and informal. After connecting with our active Shopbolt web users and receiving notes from a couple of team members, I discovered that users really did enjoy the service, but was more frustrated how they could better manage the communication/conversations they were having with their shoppers.
The initial use of text and email was convenient but not having the proper apis and data in place to consolidate all the incoming and outgoing messages in a more user friendly way, users were finding that that were actually losing time trying to recall or trace back information regarding a product they had asked for.
I also discovered -- from various user surveys that were sent out-- that the largest pain point that new users or potential users have is giving out credit card informations before even really knowing the benefits of the service. Our app needed to attract these potential users to become actual users by providing non intrusive way to getting them to sign up, and learn more about the service we provide.

Feature Edits: Important information needs to be the easiest to access

Below is how our initial hypothesis evolved based on user feedback:
Sign Up Process

  • I created a more conversational type of sign up form, playing off of the fact that this was in fact a conversational shopping tool
  • I worked with the back end developers to make sure the way we asked sign up questions would also work with capturing the right data they needed. i.e combining first name and last name into full name.
  • Sign up was a quick, and prompted users to fill out the form.
  • Credit Card Information was moved out of the initial sign-up and was instead put into a “notification/reminder” for the users.
Chat
  • Due to limited resources and budget, our initial plan to create a chat application from scratch had to be shelved for MVP, and I worked with developers and PO to find the best solution. We looked and tested numerous chat apis and settled on intercom. It was the best solution for our service, and was customizable enough for what we needed the chat functionality to be at the time.
All Conversation
  • I created a screen where users can access all past communications they have had with their shopper. This makes it easier for the users to go back at their OWN time to continue with their shopping.
Order History/My Orders
  • It became clear that, in the mind of a shopper, they would need a place to have access to what they have purchased.
  • I created a central place to access the most impactful information when it came down to the user’s orders. A place where users could track, see past orders and re-order with a tap of a button.
Alerts/Reminders
  • I created specific reminder screens to inform users that they will need to actually complete the sign-up process by adding their shipping and credit card information in order to continue with the service.
Credit Card and Shipping Information
  • I combined these two into one screen and named it My Account. This is where users can easily add, edit, or remove credit card and shipping information
Get 5
  • Since Shpbolt is a relatively new service we wanted to make sure we could leverage our users to spread the word. As appreciation we decided to offer a 5 dollar credit for every user they manage to sign up.
Specific Challenge: Finding the right solution and compromise when using a chat api.

Since we had to use a chat api, we were limited to what we could do, when it came down to chat history. Although I created a very basic solution for 1.0, I needed to make sure it was the right foundation for future iteration. I started by building a prototype for each of the different ideas that had surfaced in testing and discussions with POs. The ideas were to have 5 most recent conversation, a chat notification with icon, and button and simple messaging to direct users to the proper screen. I embedded each idea within the main mobile project.
We had wanted a home screen which had a list of all conversations and users could click through to get to the specific conversation, which of course would be the ideal ux. But because of api rules and tech at the time, we were not able to do that. I collaborated with my PO and the developers and users in order to land on a solution that properly balances functionality for the widest group of use cases. If done the correct way, this feature has the potential to empower a larger range of shoppers. With further testing we decided the best route for 1.0 was the button with simple messaging. Users could click to get to the chat api screen with the list of conversations. New conversations would be indicated on the top of the list. Which eliminated the confusion for seeing a list of conversations twice.

Reflection: What I would do differently and future plans

  • I am not content with the layout for the homepage. I would like to collaborate with the mobile dev to prioritize the layout's improvement and work together to establish a final homepage experience.
  • I would like an even simpler way to sign up by adding social networking sign-up, which is usually just one click.
  • If we had more resources and time I would have liked to implemented more of a product deals and recommendations on the homepage. I feel like this would further enhance the tool and service by basically having some hints to what other people are using the service for.
  • We had also planned on expanding on the chat functionality by following up on our initial plan which was to actually build out our very own chat client which would have had made communicating and purchasing orders much easier for the users through the chat.