client ux redesign
Urban Archive is a technology nonprofit that creates new connections between people, places, and historical institutions.
Problem and Parameters
The Urban Archive app takes users on self guided tours and sites throughout the city of New York, all based on search and user proximity to historical areas. Urban archive also recently expanded their focus to include audio enhanced tours of museum exhibits. They hope to extend museum use and popularity, as well as better integrate this new feature into the existing location based app.
In order to have the most meaningful impact, we decided to focus on research and design for the Tour function of the Urban Archive app, This feature extends to both tours throughout the city landscape as well as museum specific partnerships. We used this opportunity to focus on better servicing users during both of these situations.
I championed research for our team during the duration of this client capstone project. We consisted of four UX designers, each with cross disciplinary strength in research and design. I focused on improving tour discovery, app navigation, and cohesion between these levels. Every member of our team was involved in research, analysis, translation to design, and prototyping.
Users | Audience
Our key target demographics included museum goers and urban explorers who enjoy solo journeys or learning about history and culture as a social endeavor. We developed primary and secondary personas, after informational interviews, in order to better empathize with our audience.
My team design process was partitioned into three segments,
analysis and feature translation
design and testing
The final segment of design and testing is iterative, and we tested multiple prototypes before handing our designs to the client. Our focus remained user-centric during every step in the process.
In order to glean insights from the initial museum tours we ran in-depth user and expert interviews in the field. We visited the Museum of the City of New York and took the Germ City and Timescapes Urban Archive audio tours. We assessed the app performance and interviewed the museum curator, the educational curator, and front desk staff in order to get a birds eye view of the app experience. After our interviews, we generated a service blueprint to encapsulate the museum experience. From this we identified key growth areas in which the in-museum experience can be improved, particularly during the value exchange between museum personal and prospective users.
Affinity Mapping (Research Synthesis)
We took the combined sets from 8 interviews as well as testing, and aggregated our data in order to find patterns. This grouping process is known as affinity mapping.
Revised Problem Statement
These patterns gleaned across our research allowed us to revise our problem statement to encompass the core principles we intended to solve. Paired with our personas, this became the guiding force behind our designs…
To understand the landscape as it relates to Urban Archive, we performed a Feature Analysis of several other products. This allowed us to assess how Urban Archive’s features deliver what is industry standard as well as exceptional, based on a diverse list of competitors and comparitors.
Metropolitan Museum of Art