At compare the market.com we’ve always focused on customer needs when designing and building our products. Over the last couple of years we’ve introduced more User Centered Design principles.
Wikipedia describe User Centered Design as follows:
‘User-centered design … is a framework of processes … in which the needs, wants, and limitations of end users of a product, service or process are given extensive attention at each stage of the design process. … [It] not only requires designers to analyse and foresee how users are likely to use a product, but also to test the validity of their assumptions with regard to user behavior in real world tests with actual users at each stage of the process’
In short, this means validating everything with real customers – from early ideas through to a final finished product or feature. It means understanding and analyzing customer behavior every step of the way and updating your plans as you go, based on what you learn.
One of my responsibilities is to look after the strategy and delivery of our MEERKAT MOVIES app. MEERKAT MOVIES is comparethemarket.com’s reward for customers, offering 2 for 1 cinema tickets for a whole year when you make a qualifying purchase through us. Our apps for iOS and Android allow customers to redeem their weekly code to take a friend to the cinema.
In December 2015, we introduced movies content and cinema listings to our app, but we knew that the navigation we had at the time meant that these features weren’t as easily discoverable as we would like. When we looked at our data, we found that customers who did find this content were massively more engaged with the app.
We took this as an opportunity to think about redesigning the app, bringing movies content to the heart of the new experience. We hoped this would inspire customers to visit the cinema, and then help them plan their trip and book tickets. Our remit was to build the best cinema-going app in the UK. We took a user centered design approach to the new design.
Card sorting exercise
Working with our partner design agency, we asked a group of customers to tell us what was important to them when planning a cinema trip. We had 50 different feature ideas that we’d come up with, and invited customers to tell us if we’d missed anything by adding their own cards. We then asked customers to sort the cards in order of importance to them.