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The Outdoor Moves App

The pandemic has ushered in a significant period of potential upheaval and reorganization of business practices in the United States and worldwide. With the widespread adoption of remote learning and work, it's inevitable that leisure and workout activities will eventually align with this trend.

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Introduction
 

Outdoor Voices is a clothing company that focuses on women’s and men’s athletic apparel with a mission to get the world moving. By freeing fitness from performance and bringing play back into everyday day life, OV is building a community of Recreational enthusiasts who believe #DoingThings - moving your body and having fun with friends - is the surest way to a happy and healthy life. Outdoor Voices is a private company and does not disclose company financials, but in 2018 they were valued at $110 million, with backing from some highly respected VC firms.

OBJECTIVE

OV noticed a rise in customers using apps to exercise during the pandemic. They asked us to create an app aligned with their values that allows users to access on-demand and in-person exercises while engaging in the OV community.

 

ROLE

UX Researcher/Designer, Graphic Designer

TEAM MEMBERS

Naomi Mansfield, Sothy Tang

TIMELINE

2 weeks of research, testing and design

User Research

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Affinity Mapping

 

We conducted 10 usability tests, and tried to find out the answers to the most critical questions below:

  • What motivates you to work out?

  • What do you enjoy about being active?

  • What are some physical activities you enjoy?

  • Have you participated in online exercises?

  • What aspects of the community are important to you?

  • Tell me about the last time you were physically active.

And we can feel some strong trends below.

I Statements

  • "I like to have a variety of ways to get exercise."

  • "I love being able to enjoy my surroundings when I’m active outside."

  • "I seek a community of llike-minded individuals"

  • "I seek a community of a sense of belonging in community."

  • "I seek connection, camaraderie, and my exercise journey in different ways."

  • "Online and in-person exercises add value."

  • "Staying active improves my mental health and helps me think clearer.”

Core Value the Users Want

  • COMMUNITY

  • ENVIRONMENT

  • VARIETY

  • PERSONAL WELLBEING

We Stand with Emily, Our Persona

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So, What is the Problem?

Users need a better way to work out from home; users need a way to connect with others and be part of a fitness community so that they can receive the push and motivation to consistently work out in order to feel confident while achieving their goals of a healthier mind and body. Moreover, users need access to a variety of workouts and workout environments in order to stay engaged, as well as access to like-minded individuals in order to feel the fulfillment of being part of a supportive community.

HMW?

  • ...create a virtual fitness platform that provides community and accountability for users working out from home?

  • ...challenging atmosphere for the users?...incorporate various forms of exercise that create a

  • ...design an app with outdoor activities to keep users engaged and excited about their home workouts?


 

 

Business Analysis

Competitive Analysis

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Comparative Analysis

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Beyond the pandemic's influence, prominent market competitors have already begun creating remote workout apps. Initially, several apps like NTC have successfully established the foundation for remote workout methodologies. However, significant room for improvement remains. Drawing insights from successful apps that effectively organize and analyze offline workouts can greatly enhance the development of newer, more effective online workout applications.

 

User Flow

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Through attentive consideration of user feedback and insights from the most popular workout apps in the market, we meticulously crafted a user flow that seamlessly aligns with the familiarity of mainstream apps. Our goal was to optimize ease of use while ensuring a user-friendly experience that feels intuitive and recognizable.

Journey Map

Scenario

 

Emily finishes work early and wants to do something outdoors with others, but isn’t sure what she wants to do. She opens the app to see if anyone is available.

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Through a comprehensive user journey map, we identified a common point of confusion among users like Emily when it comes to fitting exercise into their random free time. The challenge arises from either too few or too many activity options available. To address the lack of motivation for consistent exercise among mainstream users, we propose a solution that involves providing timely advice when options seem limited and enabling quick navigation through choices when there are abundant possibilities. Additionally, we aim to foster a supportive community that offers help and encouragement to clients, utilizing positive peer pressure to further motivate users on their fitness journey.

This Is Our Solution

The Outdoor Moves app integrates social media and users’ surroundings across a variety of online and outdoor workout events to inspire users to actively participate in their community and enhance personal well-being. By utilizing this app, users can access a diverse range of on-demand videos including user-generated content. Additionally, the app gives personalized recommendations for outdoor activities where users can enjoyably create and promote their own events through an interactive map.

 

Information Architecture

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Our app will consist of five feature boards. To prioritize development and ensure optimal user experience, we will initially focus on creating prototypes for three key sections: the home page, community page, and events page. The prototype will undergo rigorous usability testing to refine and enhance its functionality before the full app development takes place.

Design Studio

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Quick Solution Sketching

A design workshop was conducted in response to the solution statement. The team brainstorming process resulted in a bunch of interesting solutions:

  • A tool to create events and invite users;

  • Event suggestions based on surroundings and preferred activities;

  • Interactive map indicating available users and active events you can join;

  • On-demand workout videos;

  • Free user-generated content;

  • Motivational tools: Badges, Trophies, Competitions;

  • Mirroring: the ability to see yourself alongside the workout video;

  • Paid user-generated content. Banners indicating free or paid;

  • Tree Goal: Choose a goal, and the app gives workouts to complete;

  • Virtual workout with friends: Invite friends to do a virtual workout, can mirror yourself or your friend;

  • Live instructor-led content;

  • Upload photos/videos of activities you did;

  • See past activities friends engaged in;

  • Recurring OV-hosted community events.

However, after considering factors such as time and money, the team decided that four of the solutions would be prioritized into high-fidelity prototyping to form an MVP:

  • A tool to create events and invite users;

  • Event suggestions based on surroundings and preferred activities;

  • Interactive map indicating available users and active events you can join;

  • On-demand workout videos.

Mid-Fidelity Prototype

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Why Mi-Hi?

For a better first round of usability testing, the team decided to create a mid-fidelity prototype directly.

First-round Usability Testing

In the first-round usability testing of our mid-fidelity prototype, the users' task was to successfully create his/her own event. However, several errors were found.

Frequent Error 1

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PROBLEM: Users didn’t want to read through the onboarding screens.

SOLUTION: Reduced text and made more scannable with bold keywords. Made images cleaner/lighter to draw attention to the text.

Frequent Error 2

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PROBLEM: Users didn’t realize they could click multiple items. Also, users had to tap in the circle to highlight, but they just tried to tap the photo.
SOLUTION: Specified to select up to three and made the entire image tappable.

Frequent Error 3

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PROBLEM: The user was overwhelmed by content, and wasn’t obvious how to get to “in-person events”.
SOLUTION: Used cleaner images, made images larger, and spaced further apart to display less on the screen.

All these findings were optimized in the high-fidelity prototype.

Design System

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In the second-round usability testing of our high-fidelity prototype, the users' task was the same as in the first round. Only 1 error was found this time, and it's optimized.

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The design system of OM follows the original design guidelines of the website of Outdoor Voices. Below is a showcase of some most critical pages of the app.

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For more details, please try out our interactive prototype below.

Second-round Usability Testing

In the second-round usability testing of our high-fidelity prototype, the users' task was the same as in the first round. Only 1 error was found this time, and it's optimized.

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PROBLEM: Users didn’t understand what the people icon and stars represented.

SOLUTION: Incorporated a legend.

Final Prototype

Next Steps

  • Another round of usability testing;

  • Make necessary changes;

  • Built out the on-demand video feature.

What I Have Learned?

Amidst the pandemic's uncertain and helpless moments, developing this app was a source of excitement and profound empathy for all of us. As we recognize the rising trend of remote workouts and the lack of a fully mature program in the market, our responsibility is twofold: to observe the actions of market leaders and maintain our imaginative spirit. Collaborating with my team, I take pride in not only being witnesses to these transformative times but also leaving our mark on them. It's a fulfilling journey, and we are committed to making a positive impact on the fitness landscape.

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