Hellooo Vancouver Mobile App
A UX Case Study
Moving to a new city is hard and finding your specific ‘tribe’ in a new city is even harder.
Only a local would know about the truly unique personalities of the neighbourhoods in Vancouver.
Offering end users an interactive quiz, GPS navigation and personalised account; Hellooo Vancouver gives you all the insider secrets.
Hellooo Vancouver never has to leave your side. From finding you the ideal location to live, all the way through to orientating you with your new surrounds.
Vancouver is admired as one of the top cities to live in the world. Being such a wonderful city, makes it a very sought after destination to move to. The opportunity was to create a mobile app introducing newcomers to the Vancouver area by matching a neighbourhood that best suits their interests, personality and lifestyle. This includes exploring the different neighbourhoods for your needs and finding rentals.
Research, plan and design a clickable high fidelity prototype and present within 10 days.
User Interview, Survey, Comparative/Competitive, Affinity Diagram, User Flow, Site Map, Customer Journey Map, Use Case, Story Board, Low- Fidelity Wire Frames, High-Fidelity wireframes, Usability Testing
Pencil, paper, POP(paper prototype app for user testing), Sketch, Invision
With over 40,000 immigrants from around the world moving to Vancouver each year and thousands of Canadians moving to escape to the warmer climate, the housing market in Vancouver has become increasingly competitive.
In our research we found we had three major competitors; Craigslist, Walk Score and Airbnb. Most of our target audience use Craigslist. Design is not a priority for craigslist and amenities are only specified by whomever is listing the property. Airbnb is mostly used for people looking for short term rentals and like Craigslist, the host has to give the user further information on the area. Walk Score has rental listings and information on amenities in the area. The app, provides users with area ratings and information on amenities in the specified area(s), but the user has to know the address of the desired location.
Through this analysis we discovered that while the current 3 closest competitors do offer end users a quick and easy way to find available housing, there is still a gap in the market for a more personalized approach for users to find a rental in a neighbourhood that fits there interests, hobbies and personality.
User Interviews & Survey Results
We conducted 5 interviews with our target audience, individuals whom had relocated to Vancouver. After the interview process we knew we needed to reach more people, and did so by sending out our first of two surveys via Facebook and Craigslist. Within a day we received 30 responses, narrowing down more of our data.
After reviewing both our collective interviews and survey results we defined our Primary User.
To plan our design, we had to go back to research. We had two main key findings. Users were frustrated with finding the right community and locating amenities within that community/neighbourhood. We thought that to solve this problem, we could fix this with a interests quiz and an interactive map.
From the quiz we realised we would need neighbourhood profiles and an interactive map to assist end users in getting around their new home.
Once we decided what features we needed to break us apart from the current market, we created a user flow to help determine how our primary user would progress through the app. We had our user flow tested to make sure that user understood the process. Tested and approved, we could then create a site map and customer journey map.
Before we went any further with our design we wanted to be certain that our users would enjoy a quiz. The quiz was our unique selling point, so we had to make sure the response would be positive. To determine this, we sent out our second survey via Facebook.
We found the users liked recommendations but also liked to have access to all options. We also discovered 61.5% of users loved tailor made quizzes, 50% either loved or liked them and 100% of the users were familiar with personalised quizzes. The survey gave us the information we needed to proceed in the direction we were headed.
With such a clear direction of where we wanted to take the app the designs came out thick and fast.
The quiz would give users a personalized way to locate a neighbourhood within Vancouver that would best suit there needs and interests. To provide users with the best results based on the information they would give the app, we had to create neighbourhood profiles so our quiz would generate accurate results based on what the user inputs.
The interactive map would help users find amenities in the local area they would reside in. Users could search for amenities by entering a keyword rather than address (ei. grocery, coffee, ATM etc.) then show the user where those amenities are located in there area within a 2km radius.
Information on events in the community would also be available for users to find within the applications.
With these 3 key features in mind the three of us began with a design studio approach where we compared and collaborated on ideas by drawing them up on the whiteboards.
Once we had a clear view of how we wanted the app to look we spilt up the pages and began drawing out the paper protoype.
Our first test gave us a lot of insight which then led us back to re-sketch multiple frames of our prototype. We tested through our entire design process taking our design from 37 screen to 26 then to the final 30. We changed out frames 6 separate times overall.
We knew that our design wouldn’t be useful unless our users enjoyed the experience. The feedback we gained from each test gave us invaluable insights that helped us make multiple improvements. We found that testing was such a crucial part of our whole design process.
UI and IA
Then the fun part began! Adding life and colour and tone of voice to our app. Being an app designed specifically for Vancouver we decided it was important it reflected this beautiful city. Our logo was designed to represent the mountains and influenced by the colours that surround Vancouver; green to represent the forest and blue; the ocean.
Being that relocating can be a stressful experience for some, it was important that our colours reflect a calm and friendly experience. We wanted our design to be enjoyable, and relatable. Our tone of voice was a “knowledgeable and easily accessible friend” someone that end users could go to any time for help and advice on living in Vancouver.
After receiving some feedback and committing to further accessibility we found that the white text over the green was not meeting regulation. We also received feedback that the images in the quiz were not quite enough, we needed to add more details and text to guide the user through the experience. We also made changes to include iconography and edit the copy to better convey the desired tone of voice we had originally intended.
Longer term, as the app would grow and the network of users expand, we would like to include a ‘Meet your neighbour’ section onto the platform. This was designed to assist our end user in meeting new friends and building a strong community in their new home.
We would also like to add event information and local news specific to each area so that end users could be across what was happening in their community and join in local activities.
One of the biggest contributors to depression in a large city is the lack of community involvement. We would love to see Hellooo Vancouver increase community engagement and help its users live happy lives.