This post was written by Booodl’s Product Manager, Nimrod Gorali.
Us Booodlrs love a challenge; whether of the technical, table tennis or UX variety (the latter is the focus of this post). It keeps us on our toes, encourages us to work collaboratively and results in the team coming up with awesome stuff together. That’s hard to beat.
As many of you know, the last few months have been about taking our existing app and seeing what we can do better (for the full story, see George’s post).
We started with our user base. Discussing Booodl with them, understanding their needs and gathering feedback about our user experience is key to any undertaking like this.
Anders Ramsay’s recent post about agile UX vs. lean UX touched on one of the key things we believe in when tackling any UX issues: GOOBing i.e. getting out of the building to chat to your customers and understand how they are or would use your product.
We asked our users what they want, we got people into the office for user sessions and collected anecdotal feedback from friends, family and anyone else that would dish it up! There were two key findings:
- Hyper local – any shopping app that wants to revolutionise in-store shopping has to have a local focus. At any given time, users want to know exactly what stores and products are around them and easily connect with someone in that store (in our case that’s through instant message).
- Vague wants – people need to be able to add anything to their shopping list, whether a specific product or a vague item (Nudie slim fit 3.0 vs. blue jeans).
So that’s what we set out to address and incorporate in this latest release.
Hyper local: the list as map
Creating an awesome hyper-local shopping experience was a challenge, but we’re confident that what we’ve come up with hits the nail on the head.
The latest version of Booodl is not so much about new features, as it is a reordering of what was already in there: a list, a map, the ability to check-in products you want, and instant message chat.
Inspired by the likes of Zomato, we decided the shopping list needn’t take the form of a linear list, but rather an interactive local map. So now when you log into Booodl, you’ll notice the first thing you see is a full-screen map identifying the stores around you, from which you can browse their products or hit the ‘Chat’ button and start a conversation. From this view you can see all stores or filter by nearby stores stocking items on your list.
The list still exists (bottom left icon in the above screen), but the map view is the overlay from which you see it, meaning your experience is always hyper local.
Vague wants: add any product, specific or not
Allowing users to add vague wants is a huge stepping-stone for us. From a product perspective it makes perfect sense because not everyone knows exactly what model and brand they want when adding a product to their list. However, it’s very difficult on a product and UX level to make a complicated feature simple to use and intuitive.
By mapping brands and categories stocked in stores, we’re now able to provide meaningful notifications to users when they may be able to purchase non-specific items in the vicinity.
This is our first release with vague wants and the map front and centre, but it’s only the beginning. We’ll constantly be seeking feedback, monitoring how users are interacting with Booodl and iterating off the back of that.
So, what do you think? What are some great examples of UX you’ve experienced? We’d love to hear from any other startups out there who are doing interesting things in this space. We’ve come across a lot of great tools (thank you, Product Hunt), which we can’t wait to get out of the toolbox for this round of improvements.