About

For my spring 2021 UI/UX class, we were given the project of creating and conceptualizing an app with a topic/field of our own choosing. After some long nights of product soul-searching, I landed on creating a shoe-buying app.

The idea for this app came to me when a friend asked me for suggestions on what running shoe to buy. Unlike me (a former sneakerhead and basketball shoe fanatic), they were not very knowledge about shoes in general and didn’t know where to start.

Role

  • Research
  • Problem Validation
  • Ideation
  • Wireframing
  • User Testing
  • Visual Design

How might we:

  • Streamline the shoe-buying process?
  • Give the user personalized shoe options based on their needs and wants?
  • Eliminate any uncertainties in choosing and purchasing a pair of shoes?

The Problem

Shoes are one of the most important pieces of clothing that we wear. There are many different kinds of shoes; ranging from sneakers and sport shoes, to more formal shoes and boots.

However, sometimes when buying a pair of shoes it could be quite hard to figure out exactly which pair will suit your specific needs due to the large number of factors present in the shoe-buying process.

Design Process

User Interviews

I conducted several user interviews with some people that fit within the target audience I was aiming for in order to get a better understanding of the issues of the shoe-buying process. Some of the main issues I wanted to understand better were:

  • Pain points and difficulties in the shoe-buying process
  • Most important factors in choosing a new pair of shoes
  • Their thought process in selecting and narrowing down their options

Interview Questions

  • How many pairs of shoes do you have?
  • Do you have specific shoes for different purposes? (e.g. hiking shoes to hike, running shoes to run in)
  • Do you usually buy casual shoes or purpose built shoes such as for running or playing a sport?
  • How often do you purchase a shoe?
  • What motivates you to buy a new shoe? (specific purpose? bored with current shoes?)
  • Do you usually buy casual shoes or purpose built shoes such as for running or playing a sport?
  • Do you buy shoes on impulse or do you take a lot of time and consideration?
  • Do you find the process of buying a new pair of shoes easy or hard?
  • What is the most important factor to you when buying a new pair of shoes? (looks, functionality, price)
  • When buying a new shoe, do you find it difficult to choose one to buy? If not, why?
  • If so, why is it difficult to choose?
  • When looking for a shoe, how do you narrow down your choices?
  • Do you care about the latest trends in footwear?
  • When looking for a shoe, how do you narrow down your choices?
  • Do you have brand loyalty when it comes to shoes? If so, why?
  • Have you used a sneaker buying app before? (GOAT, StockX)
  • If so, do you enjoy using the app? What part of the app do you like or do not like?

User Quotes

“It’s hard, because I’m always wondering if there's something better, there are always too many options.”

“I take a lot of time and consideration due to indecision as there are a lot of selections, too many options, and sometimes size availability. ”

“I look through the different factors and compare each shoe on them, and pick the ones I like the most. It's hard because many factors are taken into account.”

"Sizing is a big concern because different brands have different sizing and it is confusing at times."

Summary of Findings

For the average person, the shoe-buying process often takes longer than needed and fraught with numerous issues that hamper this process. These issues and frustrations are:

Knowing this, my app would need the features necessary to allow users to be able to go from:

the start of the process (e.g. “I need a new running shoe!”),

to the end (e.g. purchasing the shoe and being satisfied with it.),

without users having to run into the aforementioned issues, thus keeping the shoe-buying process as efficient and hassle-free as possible.

Personas

Lindsay

Age: 24
Occupation: Marketing Coordinator
Location: San Francisco, CA

Bio

Lindsay is a young professional who loves to exercises and has a multitude of hobbies, such as running, tennis, and golf. Because of her busy lifestyle, she usually buys her shoes online as she doesn’t have the time to go out to physical stores.

Preferences and Traits

  • prefers to buy purpose built shoes
  • usually buys shoes online
  • buys around 2-4 shoes a year
  • somewhat into trends
  • comfort is number 1

Pain Points

  • hard to decide on a shoe to buy
  • sizing between brands are confusing
  • buying online leads to unsatisfactory purchases

Wants

  • be able to compare her options more effectively
  • to have more confidence in online purchasing

Lindsay

Age: 21
Occupation: Student
Location: Austin, TX

Bio

Michael is a junior studying in Austin, Texas. He loves to watch basketball and plays a lot in his spare time. His favorite shoe brand is Nike and he often buys basketball shoes from the local Foot Locker. While he is knowledgeable about basketball shoes, he is quite clueless about casual shoes and shoes for all other purposes.

Preferences and Traits

  • logical buyer
  • usually buys shoes in-store
  • buys around 1-3 shoes a year
  • not into trends
  • brand loyal to nike

Pain Points

  • difficult to narrow down options for non-basketball shoes
  • hard to find all the information on the shoe to compare, which means more time spent on the shoe buying process

Wants

  • needs some assistance in narrowing down options
  • need more info available to compare for each shoe option

User Task Flows

During class, we did a ‘Crazy 8’ drawing exercise to help brainstorm some feature ideas. I narrowed these ideas down to 3 distinct ones that I will focus on with my task flows:

Final Screens

After some usability testing and more iteration, I had my final screens made and ready to be prototyped:

Shoose!

An all-in-one shoe buying app, designed to help you find the right shoe you’re looking for.

Shoe Finder

Find the shoes that fit your wants & needs with our Shoe Finder feature. You’re only a few taps away from not having any options to getting a curated list of shoes just for you.

Shoe Finder

Find the shoes that fit your wants & needs with our Shoe Finder feature. You’re only a few taps away from not having any options to getting a curated list of shoes just for you.

Shoe Comparer

Each shoe list allows you to compare and contrast each option you have. Look at prices, colors, materials, sizing, reviews, and even purchasing locations and availability.

True Shoe Size

With an accurate AR measurement of your feet and shoe sizing differences between brands taken into consideration, sizing issues will be a thing of the past.