In order to understand the motivations of our users we used a wide range of research methods to understand what the users needed most. The main three methods that we used consisted of interviews, surveys and site visits.
The first step in our research process was to understand an accurate representation of our users. In order to do this we gained access to a study at American University which highlighted the different demographics of the users of the Market. This knowledge helped us to develop a range of personas that was precise to our audience. By considering the different lifestyles of students it helped us to empathize with the pain points one might experience when using The Market.
We then developed a user flow determining the most efficient paths that the users could take in order to achieve their goals. The user flow takes them from their entry point through a set of steps towards a successful outcome and final action, such as checking out a food item. We started mocking up the user flows with sticky notes on a white board before making it digital.
After developing our initial wireframes, we decided to test our app using the paper prototyping method. Using a mockup of our app, we sat down with six people over the course of two days to walk through our app with a number of scenarios.
We learned that our app needed to communicate more clearly that it was a crowdsourcing app. It was important for the users to know that they cannot reserve food. Because of this we developed the "inside market / outside market screen" once you first entered the app.
A more intuitive and understandable way of using The Market
Pocket Pantry has gone through a major redesign. This is important in order to keep the design fresh as well as to improve on some major issues such as usability and hierarchy. Despite the major changes the colours and fonts largely remained the same.