This case study presents a project undertaken in the Google UX Design Professional Certificate program. The project's objective was to design a product that would help users combat climate change at a local, individual level. The product, a mobile app, was developed through a series of stages, including conducting interviews, creating wireframes and prototypes, conducting usability studies, and iterating on designs.
The primary challenge identified from user interviews was a sense of fear and helplessness about climate change. Users were eager to make a difference but were unsure how to track their habits or influence policy changes. The target audience for the app was smartphone users aged 18-40 who were keen to reduce their carbon footprint.
The project involved creating personas based on user interviews, developing a user journey, and creating wireframes and prototypes. Usability studies were conducted at two stages - after the creation of wireframes and the development of high-fidelity prototypes. The findings from these studies guided the design process and helped refine the prototypes.
The final product was a mobile app that allowed users to track their carbon footprint, access scientific information about climate change, and contact local representatives to encourage policy changes. The app was well-received by users, who appreciated its easy navigation and the resources it provided. The project also included the creation of a responsive website to complement the mobile app.
The project was a learning experience in understanding and translating user needs into a functional and appealing design. Future steps for the project include conducting another usability study to ensure all user pain points have been addressed and planning further iterations for better customizations.
Research and Discovery
The research phase of this project was crucial in understanding the needs and concerns of our target users. This phase involved a combination of qualitative and quantitative research methods to gather insights and inform our design decisions.
I began by interviewing five individuals concerned about climate change and its impact on their lives. These interviews provided valuable insights into their fears, motivations, and desires. I discovered that while most of my interviewees were deeply concerned about climate change, they felt helpless and unsure of how to make a difference.
Based on the insights gathered from the interviews, I created empathy maps to understand my users' needs and motivations better. This process helped me identify a primary user group: individuals who wanted an app that would help them combat climate change at a local, individual level. It also revealed that users wanted the ability to contact their local representative to demand policy change.
I developed three personas - Alexis, Tori, and Mark - each representing a different user type with unique needs and goals. These personas helped me empathize with my users and design a product that would meet their specific needs.
Alexis is a 30-year-old marketing professional passionate about climate change and reducing her footprint on this earth. She loves being connected to her community and helping out whenever possible. She strives to make a difference in this world, even just through individual efforts. She thinks about how she can help every day by recycling and considers what she purchases and the long-term effects that product will have.
Alexis is a marketing professional and climate change advocate who need a climate app that will allow her to keep track of her carbon footprint because she wants to slow her impact on the world
She wants an app that gives her tips and tricks on how to reduce her footprint
Better and quicker access to science and factual data
"I’m upset that climate change is based on science and fact, yet there’s so much misinformation.”
“I’m terrified that we’ve reached a point of no return, and we won’t be able to reverse the effects.”
Tori is a 44-year-old social worker living in a medium size city. She’s a busy professional and doesn’t have time to do much research. She wants a quick and easy way to get good information and ways she can minimize her impact. She’s also concerned about how to connect her local politicians and how to get others involved in doing more to minimize their footprint.
Tori is a busy social worker who needs an app that will allow her to easily contact her local representatives because she wants to be able to encourage them to make better policies.
Create a resource to read scientific journals/articles
A way for us to encourage our family/friends to do their part
An easy way to contact our public servants.
"I get frustrated by misinformation and people with an agenda that wants to pretend climate change isn’t happening because of political party or money gain."
“I wish more people recycled and used more biodegradable products”
Mark is a 54 year old musician that is constantly on the go. He loves to keep up with what’s happening in the world and understanding the impact of climate change has on his and his daughter’s lives. He wants survival tips for the future generations and easy ways to contact policy makers to do better!
Mark is an on the go musician who needs an easy way to find survival tips and information because he doesn't believe climate change can be stopped and wants an easy way tot share survival tips with his family.
A resource to contact policy makers
A resource for survival
A way to help and encourage others slow down the effects of climate change.
"I’m frustrated that policy makers and leaders have known how horrible and still pushed ahead with their agendas and taking power and knowing things would get worse in the near future.“
“Frustrated that I have not prepared my kids for society breaking down on their watch”
I created user journey maps for each persona to visualize their experience with the app, from initial engagement to achieving their goals. This helped us identify potential pain points and opportunities for enhancing the user experience.
I conducted two rounds of usability studies using wireframes and high-fidelity prototypes. These studies helped me understand how users interacted with my design and revealed areas that needed refinement.
Through this comprehensive research process, I gained a deep understanding of my users and their needs, guiding my design decisions and helping me create a product that truly resonated with my target audience.
Through user-focused design can drive change and make a tangible impact. Good design is not just visually pleasing, it's empowering.
User-Centered Design: The project emphasized the importance of a user-centered design approach. By conducting user interviews, creating personas, and performing usability studies, I ensured that the app was designed to meet the specific needs and preferences of the target users.
Addressing User Pain Points: The project highlighted the significance of addressing user pain points. Users expressed feelings of helplessness and uncertainty about how to combat climate change. The app was designed to empower users by providing tools to track their carbon footprint, access reliable information, and contact local representatives.
Iterative Design Process: The project demonstrated the value of an iterative design process. I conducted usability studies at two stages of the design process and used the feedback to refine the app. This iterative approach ensured that the final product was user-friendly and effective.
Importance of Accessibility: The project underscored the importance of making the app accessible to many users. I created a responsive website in addition to the mobile app, ensuring that users could access the platform on various devices.
Future Improvements: The project concluded with plans for future improvements. Plan to conduct another usability study to address all user pain points and plan further iterations for better customizations. This shows a commitment to continuous improvement and user satisfaction.