I approach every project with a user-centered mindset and a deep interest in understanding my target population. It helps to observe and develop empathy with users before starting the first wireframe or user flow. This type of thinking also helps me with the process of questioning: questioning the problems, questioning the assumptions, and questioning the implications. Ideally trying to answer questions like:
Who are our users?
What is our product used for?
When is it used?
What specific situations is it used in?
What will be the most important functionality?
What problems are users currently experiencing?
How are they solving these problems?
Creating personas helps put a face to this information and provide important design guidance. Here are a few sample personas I created for potential Paycrave users:
Sara is a nurse and needs a quick solution to locate food trucks near her work. She often works odd hours, so stopping by food trucks to grab some grub for herself and her coworkers late at night is an important problem she needs help solving.
Peter is an office worker who hates the daily grind of figuring out where to go for lunch and what to eat. He enjoys getting out of the office, but also wants to avoid long lines. He wants to have his food ready for pickup, preferably without having to call ahead.
Jessica's looking for a healthy variety of food and loves discovering new flavors, but she's also on a budget. Filtering search results by price, distance, and genre are valuable features in her mind. Jessica follows food trucks on blogs and social media, so being able to save her favorite trucks and easily locate them at any time is also important to her.
After learning about our target users and empathizing with their needs and problems, it's helpful to begin thinking about how our solutions can address the following factors:
Paycrave connects users with local food trucks and easily order food for pickup. It's useful for both users and food truck owners.
Delivers value to users and food truck owners, at its core making the process of connecting the two a simple and delightful experience.
Easy to find and complete top three core actions within the app: locate trucks, view menu, and order food.
Ratings let users enhance credibility factor.
Branding, aesthetics, emotional design all contribute to enhancing desirability.
Colors and design are inclusive and non-prohibitive--a tutorial teaches the major interactions, buttons contrast with backgrounds and are large enough to see and press.