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Car Park

HerHeartCo

Duration

9 weeks, January-March 2023

Role

UX Designer/Researcher

Technology

Figma

Team

Daniella, Erica, Clarabelle, & Cammi

The Problem

For this group project, we were tasked with redesigning the CarMax mobile app. CarMax is aiming to focus their brand on creating stress-free car purchases for their customers.

 

However, the current user experience leaves users with an endless amount of possible cars to choose from. 

Customers find selecting a car to purchase too much of a hassle. There are dozens of possible cars to choose from, which require multiple visits to the dealership to ensure customers are satisfied with the car before they commit purchasing one.

 

How might we give customers an easier and more exciting way to narrow their car search and book a test drive?

Design Approach

User Personas

We focused on two specific personas to become more familiar with the users we are designing for. Creating these personas helped my group visualize our users and their needs to better inform our design decisions.

The Single Adult

  • looking to buy a medium size car

  • prioritize price, ease of use, & style

  • relies on reviews

  • wants to test drive different models

The Family

  • looking to buy a large car

  • prioritize comfort & functionality 

  • safety is especially important

  • wants to compare different options

Design Principles

1. Usability

The redesign must be easy to use for the user to achieve their goals.

2. Simplicity

A minimal design will highlight key features and simplify navigation

3. User-centered

The features should be personalized to fit the user's preferences

Initial Whiteboards

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We started by white boarding our initial ideas for the new features our app would have. This process helped us to visualize what the user experience would be like, and identify possible pain points users would encounter.

 

After discussion,  we decided to include three key features:

1. a personalized quiz to narrow the user's car preferences

2. a comparison feature that allows the user to compare two cars' features side-by-side

3. an appointment scheduler for the user to book a test drive with a selected car.

User Journey Mapping

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To get an idea of how our features would relate together for an integrated user experience, we mapped out a typical user journey to streamline users' experience as they move through the app's features.

The new features would condense the user's car search into one quiz. After the user completes the quiz, the user will be shown their top car matches, two of which the user could select, and use the comparison feature to further help them decide which car best fits their preferences to book a test drive for.

Initial Prototypes

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User Interviews & Usability Testing

We conducted usability testing on our prototype through interviewing five users.

Q: How would you describe your past experience during the process of purchasing a vehicle?

"Disappointing. It was hard to find a good car that wasn't out of my budget." -A

"Lots of waiting, talking, and rudeness... Buying a car is boring." -J

Q: What are your overall impressions of the application?

"It's pretty cool. If I wanted to buy a car, it could be very helpful. It was easy to navigate, and I was able to pick a lot of preferences using the quiz." - K

Q: Would this application help you accomplish your goal of finding a car for your intended purpose?

"Yes, I think it would. It would be a good starting point." -T

 

"Making an appointment is pretty helpful so yes" -K

  • Users' pain points included the time-consuming nature of visiting car dealerships and difficulty finding preferred cars.

  • Initial responses to our new features and their design were positive - users expressed that the quiz would be a good starting part for their car search.

  • As for areas for improvement, we received feedback on inconsistencies with back buttons and color choices that made text difficult to read.

Results

Taking into account the feedback we received from usability testing, my group made revisions to our design and communicated these changes to ensure that our design came together as one cohesive product.

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Takeaways

This was my first design project, which I learned important lessons:

1. User-centered design thinking

Keeping our two personas in mind while coming up with the design was crucial for helping my team decide what types of solutions to focus on implementing.

2. Feedback is <3

Conducting usability testing gave us valuable insights that we would not have noticed in our design if we had not tested to see what real people thought of our designs. 

3. Communication! 

Groups cannot simply just divide parts of a design project and call it a day - we must communicate throughout and be on the same page for the end product to be holistic and flow seamlessly.

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