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Community Basket

A Mobile App Case Study

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Overview

For this project, my two partners and I decided to develop a new mobile app. We wanted to do something that promoted sustainability and waste reduction. We end up with the idea for an app that allows users to buy and sell used or unused common household goods. We felt that while people are decluttering their homes they often end up throwing away a lot of products. What if you could find someone to sell your laundry detergent to? Or a non-profit that would accept it as a donation? Community Basket was designed to get items you no longer have use for into the hands of those who need it. 

Tools Used

Figma

Invision

Miro

Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc.

Problem

Decluttering your home can often have a negative impact on the environment as household items are far too often thrown out, adding to unnecessary waste. These goods could very well be used by other members of a community which are trying to save money, or charities which rely on donation. 

Role

UX Researcher

UX Designer

UI Designer

Solution

Decluttering your home can often have a negative impact on the environment as household items are far too often thrown out, adding to unnecessary waste. These goods could very well be used by other members of a community which are trying to save money, or charities which rely on donation. 

Timeline

This project was completed over the course of three weeks.

Phase 1: Empathize & Research

 

Proto Persona

With an early idea of what Community Basket is we began thinking about who our potential users could be. Being a marketplace app, we felt that the user base could be pretty broad with a varying demographic. To narrow down on one type of user we though about who might be selling on this platform. 

We came up with a Denver-area schoolteacher named Sally Jefferson. We felt while she could both be a buyer and seller she would utilize the app the most by selling things around the house she no longer needs. 

User Research & Testing

To better develop our product we needed to conduct some user research. We developed a Proto-persona and moved on to create a user interview. We interviewed five people to better understand how users clean up around the house, what they like and dislike about the process, and what would improve the process for them. Some key takeaways we found:

Sell

Users like to make money back on things if possible.

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User Insights

After interview five potential users we pulled the most useful and relevant information onto stickies in Miro. 

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Affinity Diagram

With our user insights laid out we began to pull the most notable stickies from each interview and group them up based on similarity.

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User Persona

After going through our user insights and gathering them into an affinity diagram we took our Proto persona a step further and developed our fully fleshed out user persona. We took Sally Jefferson a step further and elaborated on her bio, pain points, and wants/needs. This helped us solidify a user and determine who we were building this platform for.

Phase 2: Definition & Ideation

 
Image by Josh Berendes

Problem Statement

Community Basket was designed to assist users in sustainably offloading lightly-used household items to others via donation or selling. We have observed users would prefer to get items to others who need them rather them through them away.  How might we provide a hassle-free platform  so that our users are able to quickly and successfully transfer items to one another within a local radius? 

Image by Josh Berendes

I Like, I Wish, What If...?

We had a user in mind, we had a problem and a solution, now we needed to develop our key features that would solve our user's problems and create a delightful and enticing product. To kick that off we conducted an I Like, I Wish, What if...? activity to get every possible feature down that the three of us could come up with.

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Feature Prioritization

We took our 'I Like, I Wish, What If' stickies and compiled the ones we voted on into a Feature Prioritization Matrix. This helped us narrow down the features we like into what was most doable, necessary and realistic. The top left box were the stickies that we felt were the most necessary and from those we developed three main features to encompass those ideas:

  1. Selling items via local drop-off lockers or person-2-person transactions.

  2. Buying items vis the locker locations or from seller directly.

  3. A donation branch showing local nonprofits and the items they are in need of.

UX Hypothesis

We believe that creating a platform for users to sell or donate household goods they no longer need will lead to more sustainable way to declutter and reduce waste while providing to other people and organizations in need.

Value Propisition

Community Basket is developing an application that provides users a space to allocate unused household goods to other users cheaply, quickly, and sustainably.

We help you save money and the earth.

How Might We?

Community Basket was formed with sustainability as its core value with the mission to provide people with an easy and quick way to sell, donate, and buy household items. We have observed that users prefer to sell or donate when possible and convenient

Phase 3: Prototyping & Testing

 
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UX Hypothesis

Sally has been frustrated with her cluttered home. She has been good about donating things she doesn’t care to add to the landfill to people that can use them before, but now with two young children, she can’t make frequent trips to the nearest Goodwill or Salvation Army, nor deal with the hassle of craiglist postings and the potential wierdies they attract. With a quick Apple App Store search of “Yard sale” she finds ‘Community Basket’. A self description of “A communal platform for reducing the clutter in your home by repurposing it towards your neighbor..”.

User Journey

Opportunities

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Sitemap

We figured out what we wanted our features to be and how we wanted our platform to help our users. It then became time to figure out how that might look. To begin this process we developed a sitemap of our home screen before moving on to developing some user flows. On the left you can see our main navigation system of four buttons (Buy, Sell, Donate, Account) located at the bottom of the phone. Navigation at the top of the screen features a search bar and a home button.

User Flows

Once we knew how the home screen would be laid out we began to put together some users flows. This step was incredibly important as it helped up figure out how the other screens throughout the app should look.  We created four user flows going over this processes:

  1. Signing up/Signing In

  2. Buying an Item

  3. Selling an Item

  4. Donating an Item

These exhibited how the user would need to interact with our key features and the app overall. Our Sitemap and User Flow can be viewed closer here.

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Low-Fidelity

to Mid-Fidelity

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Style Guide

Before moving on to our high-fidelity prototypes we needed to developed the app's style. We gathered images for both inspiration and use. We created a color palette fresh and vibrant greens with some complimentary accent colors. We finalized a nice and simple logo of a smiling basket while gathering icons to use throughout the app. Community Basket's aesthetic is inviting, refreshing, earthy, and modern. Our app's overall aesthetic and design is open and welcoming to all who chose to use it. 

Usability Tests

While we were finalizing our style guide we also conducted five usability tests. This testing revealed some iterations we needed to make before finalizing our high-fidelity prototype.

Navigation

Users struggled to navigated back to the homepage. Needed a home button accessible on every page.

Aesthetic

While conducting the test some overall aesthetic changes were pointed out by users and noticed by us.

Mid-Fidelity

To High-Fidelity

Reflection & Conclusion

Overall I think my group and I created a great design. We worked really well together and were all able to showcase are strongest skills in UX/UI. We developed a product that meets the main needs and desires of our users.

If this project were to keep going into the future we would like to expand it to other cities while also expanding the products allowed in the marketplace.

This project helped me develop as a design. I was able to take the lead on UI design and strengthen my skillset because of that. Working in a team was nice because we were able to learn from one another.

End