Tackling physical, mental, and social well-being in a post pandemic world

UX Design Intern, Wellyou (2020)
Lotus Pose

Background

Wellyou is a holistic and gamified app for ones physical, mental, and social well-being. They do so by providing science backed information, nutrition trackers, activity trackers, and more to help users organize a well-rounded life.

 

Founded by Adam Schuster and Amelia Strzepek in Berlin Germany, the app pivoted it's focus to at-home well-being at the start of 2020 (during the start of the COVID 19 pandemic)  in hopes to better fit the new needs of it’s users at the time.

My Role

I was brought on as a UX Design Intern to develop and deploy an initial User Research plan in order to better understand target users and prioritize feature development. By the end of my internship, I presented research findings from Surveys, User Interviews, and Usability Testing to the team.

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CHALLENGE

Finding product market fit

The Founders at Wellyou wanted to make sure that the features they were presenting in their app were aligned with what users wanted to interact with at the time. They also wanted to find out which features they needed to highlight in order to help users feel most supported and engaged.

GOALS

Kicking off our research

In collaboration with the founders, I developed 3 key goals to ground our research. These goals would help us maintain focus as we pursued secondary research, surveys, user interviews, and usability testing.

Discover how people are spending their time at home during quarantine
Discover what challenges people are facing being isolated from friends and family
Discover what apps and/or services people are using (physical, mental, and social) to combat these challenges

SECONDARY RESEARCH

Initial research key findings

It became quickly clear from our initial research that behaviors were changing as stay at home orders started to take place. People were adapting to a new lifestyle and as a result their social, physical, and mental well-being shifted as well.

36%

of Americans, in an American Psychiatric Association poll, stated that the pandemic has impacted their mental health

40%

Rise in Yoga mat sales raking on Amazon

65%

Growth in remote therapy apps like Talkspace and Brightside

PLANNING

Our Research Plan

Our secondary research gave us enough confidence to move on to conducing our own research. Our research plan involved Surveys, Usability Testing and User Interviews.

Survey

Continue validating the need for a holistic well-being app.

Usability Testing

Analyzing the usability of the existing "wellyou-in hard times" app by putting it in the hands of users.

User Interviews

Listening to potential users to get a deeper understanding of current pain points and frustrations surrounding happiness and well-being

RESEARCH

Survey Results

I along with a team of 4 other Junior UX Designers collaborated to create and distribute a survey that would help us continue to validate the market and learn more about our users' reaction to the pandemic.

 

The 10 minute survey was created in google forms and distributed through online channels. A total of 87 responses were recorded. Here are some key results:

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Some warnings...

We knew that the survey was not perfect. As an early start up, we had to surrender to the limitations around sourcing participants. We did not have the budget to use a third party sourcing service and therefore were subject to some response bias. Particularly:

Sampling bias: Respondents of this survey do not represent a random sample. This is mainly due to the self-selection of participants through online and social media channels of the team. Respondents outside of online channels may be misrepresented in this sample.

Small sample size: Due to the monetary and resource constraints, our sample size may limit the statistical power of our findings. However, the objective was to rapidly provide the team with a starting point in order to explore further.

Acquiescence bias: As a start-up, we relied heavily on our own social circles to recruit respondents for the survey. Although efficient and affordable, this may lead to bias towards positive findings as people may want to show support.

We made sure to disclose these biases when presenting the takeaways.

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RESEARCH

Survey Takeaways

Below are some of the key takeaways presented to the team. Based on our initial findings, it was clear that people faced new frustrations in their daily lives due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many related to current features of the app already including Daily Snippets and Group Activities.

37%

felt that the most frustrating part of social distancing/ self isolation is uncertainty about the future

66%

of survey participants are actively connecting with family and friends to cope with social distancing/ self-isolation

51%

Of survey participants that described how they worked on their happiness mentioned exercise as a key activity

RESEARCH

Usability Testing

Due to COVID-19 social distancing protocol, we leveraged Google Meets and it’s screen sharing features to perform our remote usability tests.


After being presented with the app, testers were asked to answer a series of first impression questions followed by specific tasks to perform.


We recorded their behaviors as they thought aloud throughout the process.  We tested a total of 3 participants at the time. Again, we were aware of the tradeoffs around a limited number of participants but at the end of the day, we created a scalable process in which Wellyou can use to perform future Usability Testing.

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Test Procedure

RESEARCH

Usability Testing Results

We recorded the results from the Usability Tests on a data sheet,  assigning points based on whether or not the tester was able to complete each task. 

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RESEARCH

User Interviews

There were still many questions unanswered. At this point, there were common themes within the responses of the users we talked to. Particularly surrounding uncertainty about the future (mental well-being) , maintaining relationships (social well-being), and exercising as a way to cope (physical well-being). We wanted to gain more insight around these 3 themes in User Interviews. We Interviewed a total of 6 potential users in hopes to discover new and deeper insights.

"I'm not sure if I'll be able to meet the goals I set for myself"

"I'm exercising a lot more...which is great"

"Trying to balance all the things and maintain a schedule helps"

"Not being able to see family and friends during big events was very stressful for me"

We then organized recorded quotes by affinity.

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FEATURE PRIORITIZATION

Putting it all together

The combination of insights gained from the surveys, usability tests, and user interviews, gave us a great starting point for mapping out certain features to ideate and prioritize. We collected a list of our current and potential future features and organized them according to priority and effort involved.

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RESULTS

Recommendations

The result of our work was 3 keystone recommendations presented to the founders.

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