CASE STUDY: PICKEE

 

Project Description

Pickee allows users to create simple meals from ingredients they already have.

Project Story

Most people go to the grocery store with a shopping list of items; of which many will be used toward certain dishes they plan on making that week. Almost always, however, people end up buying too much of a specific ingredient or item, using only the portion necessary for that specific dish. As a result, I created this app to solve a basic problem: how to create simple dishes based on the ingredients a person already has in their kitchen. This app populates recipes based on pre-defined foods that a user currently has in their kitchen or plans to buy on their grocery list. This way it optimizes the use of all of their food and ensuring limited waste in the process.

I thought of this idea when, one day, I realized that my fridge was filled with leftover vegetables and seasonings. Not only were these items taking up space in the fridge, but also many were weeks old. I quickly figured out that my fridge always had leftover fruits and veggies because I inevitably only consumed a portion of what I purchased at the store. I usually purchase items with a specific recipe in mind, but inevitably end up using half of the ingredients and the rest almost always is thrown out. I generally don’t have time to research recipes online, so the idea of having an app populate recipes based on what’s currently in my kitchen allows me to optimize the things I already have, and therefore save money, while also suggesting recipes where I may only need to buy a handful of ingredients.


Pickee Homepage Screenshot


 

ITERATIVE DESIGN PROCESS

 

UX Design Process

Ideation

Competitive Analysis: Researched other food applications to get an understanding what mobile apps exist and what features they have.

User Research: Sent out user surveys that was designed to get an understanding of how the user plans out their week in terms of grocery shopping and meal preparation.

User Personas: Created user personas to get a more realistic representation of the target audience.

Building

User Flow: Based on the competitive analysis and user research, I created a user flow for an initial path that will be used by the user.

Created various paper prototypes and hi-fidelity prototypes.

User Testing

Based on the user feedback from user testing, I iterated on the prototype.

Iterating

Created a final site map and annotated wireframes based on the final iteration.



 

COMPETITIVE ANALYSIS

 

SIDECHEF


App Description

SideChef makes cooking accessible, easy and fun at any skill level by providing you with step-by-step photos, instructions and voice commands.

Navigation

  • Icons on the bottom
  • Filter link has additional options

Layout & Design

  • Clean layout
  • Large images and sans-serif fonts

Features

  • Search for Recipes
  • Social media component
  • Push Notifications
  • Videos with recipe instructions

Sign-up Process

Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest

App Preview

Side Chef App Preview

YUMMLY


App Description

The most powerful recipe search, the recipe sites you love, your digital recipe box, recipe recommend-ations just for you, and one-hour grocery delivery - all with you wherever you go.

Navigation

  • Icons on the top
  • Menu Icon has additional options

Layout & Design

  • Simple Layout
  • Large Images
  • Easy to scroll through images

Features

  • Ability to create shopping lists
  • Shopping list allows scanning of item and app finds recipes with that item
  • Save favorites
  • Shopping delivery with Instacart

Sign-up Process

Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest

App Preview

Yummly App Preview

KITCHEN STORIES


App Description

Kitchen Stories has you covered with a slew of recipes across an impressive range of categories – all backed by dazzling photos and helpful videos.

Navigation

  • Icons on the bottom
  • Filter options

Layout & Design

  • Pinterest style layout
  • Large food photography

Features

  • Videos available for some recipes
  • Can create a shopping list
  • Save favorites to “My Recipes”

Sign-up Process

Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest

App Preview

Kitchen Stories App Preview
  SideChef Yummly Kitchen Stories
App Description SideChef makes cooking accessible, easy and fun at any skill level by providing you with step-by-step photos, instructions and voice commands. The most powerful recipe search, the recipe sites you love, your digital recipe box, recipe recommend-ations just for you, and one-hour grocery delivery - all with you wherever you go. Kitchen Stories has you covered with a slew of recipes across an impressive range of categories – all backed by dazzling photos and helpful videos.
Navigation
  • Icons on the bottom
  • Filter link has additional options
  • Icons on the top
  • Menu Icon has additional options
  • Icons on the bottom
  • Filter options
Layout & Design
  • Clean layout
  • Large images and sans-serif fonts
  • Simple Layout
  • Large Images
  • Easy to scroll through images
  • Pinterest style layout
  • Large food photography
Features
  • Search for Recipes
  • Social media component
  • Push Notifications
  • Videos with recipe instructions
  • Ability to create shopping lists
  • Shopping list allows scanning of item and app finds recipes with that item
  • Save favorites
  • Shopping delivery with Instacart
  • Videos available for some recipes
  • Can create a shopping list
  • Save favorites to “My Recipes”
Sign-up Process Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest Simple and straightforward; Can also browse as guest
App Preview Side Chef App Preview Yummly App Preview Kitchen Stories App Preview


 

USER RESEARCH

 

User Survey

I prepared a survey geared towards users that were between the ages of 18-45 years of age who live in either urban or suburban areas. The survey was designed to get an understanding of how the user plans out their week in terms of grocery shopping and meal preparation.

The survey was sent out to over 50 people and I received 20 responses. My idea was validated that most people waste food because they purchase more than what is necessary. About 30% of the people surveyed said that they usually end up with spoiled food and 45% said that they make an effort to cook everything if they plan out every meal in advance.

Survey Results 1

Majority of the users were urban dwellers that had a variety of requirements when searching for recipes. Specifically, they look for “Easy to cook meals.”

Survey Results 1

The user survey results confirmed that most users have specific food requirements and make an effort, but don’t always succeed in using all food items that are in their kitchen. It was interesting to find that most people prefer going to a grocery store (versus online shopping) and they shop at least once a week.

 

USER PERSONAS

 
 

USER FLOWS

 

Primary User: Anna Berman

User Flow
 

PROTOTYPES

 

Paper Prototyping

Initial sketches and paper prototypes were simple designs that displayed the basic concepts of the idea. This prototype was to get an idea of what the layout of each page of the app would be and what they might include.

In the second round of paper prototyping, I went into more detail and began to sketch out specific views of the page. I included additional pages and features based on the user survey results. Based on the results, most people use the “notes” app on their mobile device to create grocery lists. I made the layout and design of the shopping list page to work in the same way as the “Notes” app on the iPhone. I also created an easier design for adding items to “My Pantry”, which contains an inventory of what’s in the user’s kitchen. The user can upload a photo of a grocery receipt and/or scan barcodes of items. It will then auto-populate those items to the pantry.


Low-Fidelity Axure Wireframe


High-Fidelity Axure Wireframe

 

USER TESTING

 

I tested eight users over the course of one week. Based on the feedback, I was able to create a more user-friendly application design. I created paper prototypes and tested it on a couple of users and then began designing a high fidelity prototype based on the initial feedback.

In my first round of testing, I didn’t have any sort of onboarding information; specifically, how to add items to pantry and why. This was confusing the users, as they didn’t know what they had to do on the “Add Pantry” page.

Another key takeaway was adding filters for when searching recipes on the “My Recipes” page. Even though the recipes are customized for the user, the users want to be able to search for a specific cuisine, type of meal (breakfast, lunch, etc.) and the time it will take to prepare the meal. As a result, I added a “filter” icon that allows the user to filter by “Type of Meal”, “Approximate Prep Time”, “Type of Cuisine” and also an option where the user can request specific food items (i.e. meat, vegetables, grains”).

 

SITE MAP

 
 

ANNOTATED WIREFRAMES

 
 

CONCLUSION

 

The next steps for this mobile application are to add a feature that schedules daily meals for the user. The idea would be for the user to select meals in advanced based on the suggestions in “My Recipes” and have the app remind the user at specific times to prepare those meals. For example, if Anna has picked out a chicken sandwich for lunch on Monday, it will not only send her a reminder to prepare the meal at a specified time, but also keep track of the ingredients that she will be using for lunch. It will then suggest a meal with the remaining items for dinner on Monday night and so on.

Additionally, I would like to have the app sync with other apps like Fitbit and MyFitnessPal so that it can log all of the meals the user is eating to promote fitness and healthy eating.

Finally, I would like to add a feature that connects the shopping list to online shopping sites like Instacart, Amazon Prime Now and Fresh Direct. This way, the app becomes a one-stop destination for managing healthy meals, searching for delicious recipes, and allowing the user to purchase the ingredients needed to prepare a meal suggested by Pickee.

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