MenuShare is a complex dining experience that will refresh the restaurant business by trying to bridge the gap between people located in different spots. It has a menu sharing component, teleconference engine, payment engine, order engine and a reservation engine.
The first challenge was to build a tablet and smartphone app that would allow users from different locations and venues to be able to see each other's menus and remotely dine together. There were a lot of ideas regarding this products functions as it was supposed to be the entry point into the MenuShare experience. It would have to integrate in the holistic idea of the business and it was getting bloated with everything at once.
We started to identify key roles and started planning the UX by generating scenarios. In order to test our ideas and hypotheses, I created some personas to understand possible scenarios and to see which functions could be useful.
An initial problem was actually the first interaction a user would have with the system when creating or joining a MenuShare session. There were multiple ideas on the table but we ended up going with the one using the telephone number as a unique session ID. So by knowing the telephone number anyone would be able to easily create or join a session.
We started by creating clear user roles and established some personas that would assume those roles. After that we broke the whole process into simple tasks and prioritized those based on the level of importance.
We created journey maps and worked on simplifying the processes. Since it was such a complex app we broke the UX into time-based and required-based interactions to limit the amount of decisions needed at a time. The user would face an action as it's priority changed. We then created wireframes and prototypes to test our suppositions.
A key aspect is understanding the business value behind every decision. A constant flux of data informs everything that needs to be done, user research checks assumptions, and measures success through business and engagement metrics.
We created multiple functinoal prototype to test with users troughout the process in order to constamtly validate and refine the cencept. Below is one of our more final prototypes.
The final iteration of the visual design was more refined as UX was evolving and the product was getting clearer.
For MenuShare we managed to refine the client's idea and create a clear, clean and usable product that meets both his and the user's needs. But in so doing, we realized just how far out of line our Product was with our new brand identity. The app will have to face it's first live trials and be in close contact with it's users to constantly discover their needs.http://www.menushare.com/