Helping users share surplus food by building mobile app
Tackled & researched current social issues to better define problem statement, designed an end-to-end mvp mobile app, created and implemented a new brand guide and designed unique logo
👩🏼💻 My responsibilities
User research & synthesis
Brand & UI design
Myself: Product Designer
My design process
*This process was tailored to fit Givabyte's
specific project scope and goals (speculative)
Challege + Solution
Competitive & Secondary research
5 User interviews
User journey map
Moodboard + Style Tile
5 Usability tests
Final designs & prototype
Thoughts & Next steps
Better the food system and reduce food waste by helping the community share leftovers or ingredients that would otherwise be thrown out due to over stocking or imperfections.
A lot of good food and products go to waste due to over stocking or visual imperfections. Instead of chain and local restaurants, stores, farms, and households throwing their unwanted food away, why not share it with the community that could really use it?
For this I created Givabyte. A platform where neighbors, farmers, restaurants and grocery stores, share free or cheap leftovers, or ingredients, that would otherwise have gone to waste, due to imperfections or others.
Many times I find myself having to throw away good food, after a get-together with my friends or due to being unorganized with my groceries. I end up having a surplus of food that sometimes goes to waste, and I always find myself thinking: "I wish I could share this with my neighbors."
Unfortunately I’m not close with them and directly offering my leftovers just didn’t seem right. I wondered if others had this issue and if there was some solution to it.
I gathered some participants to talk to them and listen to their experiences. As it turns out a lot of other people had similar struggles.
“I’m open to receiving food from my community, I’d just be worried about my dietary restrictions”
“I really love the concept and idea of sharing food online with my community.”
“If I was able to eat various things but at a cheaper price, I’d definitely be down for that.”
As I delved further into this subject I realized that there was an opportunity for businesses to get involved as well. A lot of food goes to waste due to visual imperfections or simply because establishments like grocery stores, coffee shops, bakeries, and restaurants, among others, don’t sell all their produce in time. The Competitive and Secondary Research I did showed me that there are a few apps and services out there that also try to fight the same cause but they don’t fully succeed in all areas and offer all features.
From this study I discovered that:
1. A lot of people are used to sharing food with family and friends at get-togethers.
2. Most people would only accept food from people they trust..
3. Most users care about a more sustainable way of shopping for food.
I created a series of deliverables to keep on track with the project goals and better inform my design throughout the process.
I created an Empathy Map to visualize user’s concerns and needs and used that to create my persona to help stakeholders and myself identify with the users.
Meet Kim, the sustainable shopper. Her goal is to be smart about her shopping and avoid throwing food away. She wants to support her community by buying local, sustainable products but she needs a safety and quality guarantee for her to trust certain establishments and buy from them.
Check out the user's journey in finding Givabyte!
As I was painting a clearer picture of who the user is and what their needs are, I wanted to make sure that the business goals are being met as well.
I created a Feature Roadmap spreadsheet to better visualize what pages need to be build and tested out.
I also wanted to visualize the user’s journey through the app to better understand which pages or features were most important so I made a Site Map and multiple User Flows, as well as writing down all the necessary UI Requirements.
First I started sketching out the wireframes on paper to get an idea of the overall layout and hierarchy. After deciding on a specific design, style, and layout, I created mid-fidelity wireframes.
As I started building Givabyte’s brand I kept thinking about its tone of voice and overall vibe and I made a Moodboard to better illustrate those. Givabyte is modern, safe and secure, collaborative, inclusive and professional.
I used the mid-fidelity prototype to conduct usability tests and point out weaknesses and/or strengths in the design.
Talking to the participants and watching them go through the site, helped me identify what parts of the design worked and which parts needed change.
From this research I was able to gather valuable insights that helped me guide my design decisions during revision time:
Overall every participant had a positive impression of the overall UI. They enjoyed the branding and illustrations which made it easier to navigate the app.
Most users want other users to be verified to trust them and they want a safety guarantee. But they said they wouldn’t have a problem trusting other establishments.
They like the idea of sharing food with an app but they would be concerned about the safety issues and freshness of food.
I used all the insights I gathered from all the research and testing and came up with this final iteration of the design. I also created a UI Kit to hand off to developers to better communicate my design choices and demonstrate each element in different states.
Check out the final prototype!
Thoughts and Final Steps
This project was definitely challenging to tackle because it was the most speculative of them all. From start to finish, I had control of the brief and constraints. I knew there was a problem that needed solving and sometimes I doubted my own ideas and solutions. In those cases I let my research guide me and help me confirm my beliefs and goals.
During this project and since this was an MVP app, I learned the importance of trusting the process and not getting too caught up in the details. Details that sometimes were not relevant or ended up changing in the end. I had to remind myself to focus on the broader features and aspects of the activity to best make use of my time.
There are a lot of improvements that can be made to Givabyte since at this stage the app is just an MVP. The UI can be cleaned and perfected. More research can be conducted to fully understand the food insecurity issues some people go through, so I can better cater for them.
🙋🏻♀️ I'm proud of
staying humble and being able to find a solution for a broad problem, many people face. I am proud of being able to tackle this subject without losing touch of reality and still having and giving the users the respect they deserve.
✨ What's Next for Givabyte
Today Givabyte is a MVP app but in the future it could grow into a huge movement against food insecurity and food waste. There is a lot more research to be conducted to fully understand the situation and what users are going through but with the right resources it could potentially help more users than today.