Shop and Swap App

February-April 2019 

The Project

At the beginning of the semester, every student had given a pitch about ideas of an app. We had voted and once we had voted on the winning apps, I was put into a group of three, Our team leader had the app idea. 

Since we did not have a lot of time to complete the app, we jumped right into the first steps of the Goal-Directed design process. 

My role in the group was creating the personas, documenting the field interviews, and prototyping. 

The Team

  • Joey Spreha (Team Leader)

  • Wendy Adams

  • Conner Friden

Goal Directed Design

For this project, our team followed the ideas of Goal Directed Design, developed by Alan Cooper. These ideas lay out the framework for the project, and include the planning, research, modeling, testing and the refining of our work. Goal Directed Design must be followed in a specific order to be accomplished correctly.

Literature Review and Competitive Audit

One of the first steps we did  was Literature Review. This is looking at articles and other pieces written on our subject, in this case, buying car parts. The purpose of this is to see what prior research has been done, and what we are looking at in terms of creating an app.

The Competitive Audit is used to take a look at our competition. We used this to see what they did similarly, differently, and what we could do to set ourselves apart from them. We looked at Ebay, Amazon, and Facebook Marketplace. 

First Interviews

After doing our research, we wanted to do our first round of interviews and ask the users what they would want in a car part app, We went to a big outdoor car show that is held here in Atlanta the first Sunday of every month. It is called Caffeine and Octane, and we choose this event since we can get many types of feedback from people. Some do restoration on cars, while others just locate a part that needs to be replace for their own personal everyday vehicle. 

From the interviews, we discovered that from the people that purchase car parts, there is no one site/app that stands out. Many websites exist and users do not seem to trust many of them. Many of the people would be open to the idea of having one app that is trustworthy to sell and swap car parts all in one place. 

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Personas

We developed two primary personas, since the app would have two primary functions. We have a buyer and a seller. We also developed context scenarios for each of them when using the app. This allowed us to make sure we would design the app so the user would meet their goals effectively and with ease. 

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Lo-Fidelity Prototyping

Once we had our personas and the context scenarios, we were ready to start designing the app. We started with paper prototyping, we each did our own design and then brought them together to collaborate on the best ideas for what we wanted in the app for our users. 

Wendy's Design

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Conner's Design

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Joey's Design

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Prototyping Iteration 1

Each member of the team came up with it's own digital prototyping based on our paper and we collaborated and decided to use Joey's design for the first iteration and for usability testing. 

Joey's Design

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Wendy's Design

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Conner's Design

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Usability Testing

Since we had limited time to complete the project, we were only able to test 3 participants. We gave each participants different tasks of going through the prototype, to be able to look at a part, to be able to message the seller, etc. We got similar feedback, which we considered invaluable. They were able to tell us what features that liked, and what we can do to make it better. 

After testing, we made some revisions based on the comments recieved by participants, the main problems were:
  • It was difficult to tell what was clickable

  • "Willing to Trade" was confusing

  • Lockouts should be present if information is not filled out correctly

These problems were addressed in the second and final iteration.

Final Product

After lots of research, interviews, prototyping and testing, the final version of Swap and Shop was created.

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Presentation

The last day of class our team leader (Joey) gave a presentation of the app to the class. He went over the process of how we got to where we are, and the reasoning behind it.
This was the first time I have ever done a group project that was from start to finish. This was also the first time I have ever been involved in anything to do with usability testing and interviews. I enjoyed the process and enjoyed having my teammates, I am glad that I was able to go through this process and get a better idea of what goal-directed design is and look forward to using this experience in the work place.