My idea was to extend Instagram's mission statement from “capture and share the world's moments” to also “inspire travelling and discovering the world”. Based on this idea I concentrated on apps that offer map access and possibility to save ones findings.
I concentrated mostly on how the process of saving user's research is handled.
Many of the analysed apps offer personalised features yet few offer the possibility to tag findings on a map.
The UI of many of the analysed apps is rather appealing. Overall, there seems to be a huge potential in combining the Instagram content with saving findings on a map.
The main goal of my research was to:
The interviewees were frequent users of Instagram who are eager to discover new places and inspiration. I interviewed 4 female and 1 male users whos age ranged from 36 - 42 years.
Defining the user flow is one of my favourite parts of the design thinking process since it requires me to get concrete about how my solution will look like.
During this step, I realised that I need two, connected user flows. One to pin findings on the personal map. The other to browse ones personal map containing the personalised pins.
When working on my wireframes I focused on ensuring that they correspond to the existing design system of Instagram. I made sure to have regular instagram users review already initial wireframes to swiftly learn what made them stumble and how to improve my design. Some early findings that helped me improve my design were:
These findings and the fact that interviewed users otherwise successfully completed the user flow helped me move to a high-fidelity prototype rather quickly. Some additional findings from these interviews that I directly considered for my high-fidelity prototype were:
It was helpful to draw from the existing Instagram design system. What I noticed is that adding colours and images to the initial wireframes raised some necessary smaller adjustments to make my new feature clear. Otherwise my high-fidelity prototype was ready to be tested.
Four regular Instagram users tested my high-resolution prototype. All of them completed the tasks quickly and without stumbling. There was only one change to the design, namely to show the name of the collection also after having first created the collection, not only when navigating the existing personal map.
It was rewarding to feel the enthusiastic response of regular Instagram users to this new feature. Many stated (and I am confident not only to put a smile on my face :) that they would love to start using it right away.
After the user-testing with regular Instagram users I showed my project to a couple friends working as UX Designer. They thought it would be great to add an option to pin a post on a personal map without having to create or allocate it to a collection. Thus, in one click. This varies from my previous interviewees who wanted the option to personalise and categorise their findings. Yet, I see the value of this additional "short cut" and would design for it in a next step. I would lean heavily on the existing behaviour of the "save icon" to be in line with Instagram's current behaviour and profit from its users being used to this convention.
This project showed me again how beneficial it is to test your designs quickly, and at almost every stage of design process. The resulting findings helped me sanity check my assumptions and quickly remove stumbling blocks in my user flow.
It was very interesting for me to design a feature for an existing app because it required my design to be coherent and mindful of existing look & feels, conventions and behaviours.
I loved this project for these learnings and also since it enabled me to add more power to an app I regularly use and adore.