UX / UI Case Study : A wellness app → Stitch, the wellness application for seniors
Nowadays technology is an opportunity to live a healthier life. We can see that more and more wellness applications are created to keep track of our habits, to get motivated, to stay connected with people and even more.
However, seniors (60 years old and more) are not comfortable with technology and are not able to use these new services. This way, they might feel excluded as the applications are not always accessible for this part of the population.
My team mate Octavia Kawase, who is UX UI designer and I decided to create an application dedicated to seniors in order to give them the opportunity to benefit from technology and use its wellness services for a healthier life.
Based on “Les Senionriales” survey, 2016, we discovered some interesting datas. Some facts are positive:
- 92% of seniors think Internet facilitate daily life
- 49% think Internet is important for their social life
- 19% think Internet is essential
- 43% are using social media to communicate, meet new people and share photos.
But are also more negative facts:
- 51% are afraid of personal data violation
- 27% feel overwhelmed by Internet
Then we decided to do a survey about the feeling of loneliness that most of us had experienced, especially during the quarantine. This feeling can sometimes grow with age.
We selected 49 answers out of 107 because we focussed on the ones that were more than 60 years old and that had felt this feeling of loneliness.
Based on these answers we realised that 87% of them sometimes feel lonely. The rest of them feel it even more (often or always).
Also, all of the seniors use smartphone rather than computer or tablet.
The last question was “what do you like to do when you feel lonely” in order to understand more seniors expectations. We had 53 answers that we organised in 6 different categories through an affinity diagram : make a project, relax, be with my relatives, find love, do outdoors activities and meet new people.
Persona — Claude, the willing retired
After collecting all these data and interesting information, we created our persona: Claude, the willing retired.
He is a 64 years old widowed and father. He lives in Avignon (South of France) and used to work a lot but since he is retired he has too much free time.
He wants to stay active and dynamic (he loves hiking, collaboration (?) and fishing).
He is sociable and he doesn’t want to stay alone but he doesn’t know how to meet new people as he is not very comfortable with technology.
He likes it but he often thinks applications have complicated interfaces so he often give up on using them.
“Claude, the willing retired, needs a way to share activities with people because too much free time alone makes him feel lonely.
We will know that we succeed if he has 50% less free time alone and if he feels better (though a survey).”
To find the solution we did many “crazy 8” to get different ideas and to find the right solution to help seniors to find a way to fulfil their free time. We decided to choose the simplest solution and also the one that seemed the most important for us: connecting people to each other. So we wanted to create an application that connects seniors to each other through activities and common interests.
First the user feels lonely and opens the app to see what are the activities around them.
When the app opens it displays a map of the user’s current location from which they can see the different events around them (bubble shaped icons) that matches with the interests he added in their profile.
From that homepage, the user can navigate to three other categories :
- the profile where they can see their statistics and manage their interests and information
- the agenda where they can see the upcoming registered events
- the messages, instant chats with friends
When an activity is clicked from the map, it navigates to the page’s details where the accurate time, location, the name of the organiser and a description are displayed. The user is offered now to register to that activity.
Then comes the confirmation page with a field to write an optional message to the organiser.
“I don’t know where to click. Where is the activities’ list?” -64 y-o tester
After prototyping our mid-fi wireframes we did five usability tests to be sure that we were on the right track. Unfortunately we did not get satisfying feedback and we had to rethink our solution because most of the testers felt stuck from the Homepage : they didn’t know where to click and were looking for a list.
For our moodboard we strived to represent the ideas of simplicity and accessibility through round shapes.
We also wanted our app to be sunny with bright colours to think of positivity and happiness.
Finally helpfulness and the link created between people are core ideas that must be noticeable in our design.
The choice of the colours will remind nature, the activities outdoors and real life. We wanted them to be quite soft and not much saturated.
For typography, Handlee is used for the titles and the main buttons; as a handwritten font it brings a bit of authenticity to the design. While the Open Sans font is more practical and thus more readable to support texts, descriptions and information.
The idea of the wires that links our pages comes from the stitches in tailoring that links fabric together as this application links people together around common interests. And this is also the reason why we called our application “Stitch”
From this hi-fi wireframe we did a desirability test that proves the sincerity of our design with attributes like family-oriented, friendly and real.
We are sincerely satisfied about these results because sincerity induces trust which is encouraging since elder people tend to have trust issues regarding technology.
All along this work we have most of all learned how to design a product for seniors who are a special target. It was great to take the question of accessibility into account for people who are not really at ease with technology.
Through interviews we observed that a part of the seniors have actual interest towards technology but often they don’t have enough self-confidence in using it. They need to be reassured.
Regarding the interface they usually rather prefer a good old list over a map, things need to be straight to the point and as clear as possible when looking at them.
- iterate prototype
- communicate about the application
- add a sharing feature to invite friends and have more users
- measure the number of users to see if the application is a success or not
- make a satisfaction survey
- add review feature to enhance the feeling of trust between users
- develop a service that helps seniors to use the application
- make partnership with charity organisations as we saw in our interviews that several seniors want to be active in an organisation
Thank you for reading!