After years of deliberation, the International Concordance on Time Travel granted Zeit the ability to fully democratize the experience of time travel. A total of 289 destinations all over the world, from prehistoric through present, are approved.
Objective: Zeit contracted me to create new branding and design a consumer-facing responsive website for bookings.
Client: Zeit Travel
Timeline: 150 Hours over 6 weeks
Role: Lead UX/UI Designer
Tools: Sketch, Illustrator, InVision, Zeplin
Deliverables: Website prototype, Branding
Goal: To research the market, competitors and potential users
Process: Market Research, Competitive Analysis, Provisional Persona, 1:1 Interviews
To kick off the project, I conducted a market research of the travel and booking industry to uncover demographics, behaviors and trends that help me get a picture of the industry and consumer.
Travel Industry Trends
Online Travel Agency (OTA) followed by search engines are leading planning resources
Deals, reviews and destination content respectively most important in converting
Value and exploration leading influencers in decision making
Millennials travel the most at 5.6 trips per year
49% of men travel at least once every six months for leisure
41% of women travel at least once every six months for leisure
1 in 4 people say they would solo travel
Gen Z and Millennials most likely to book trip within 3 months
Baby boomers prefer booking a year in advance
Desktop preferred for travel planning and booking
26% of travel searches were on mobile
I conducted a competitive analysis of the high tech and experiential travel industry to identify strengths, weaknesses, and gaps from competitors to understand Zeit's opportunity in the market.
I created four provisional personas of potential Zeit users based on industry and competitive research. These personas help develop the interview guide by narrowing focus on a group.
With a better understanding of the travel industry and competitors, I crafted an interview guide to question participants about their experiences in travel, travel booking and safety. I gathered 5 potential users from a target demographic of age 25-27 for 1:1 interviews to observe consumer needs, desires and pain points. View the interview debrief here.
Goal: Synthesize research to define core problems
Process: Empathy Map, Persona
I constructed an empathy map to organize observations according to the following criteria: doing, thinking/feeling, seeing, hearing, gains & pains to synthesize findings from 1:1 interviews. From the empathy map, I was able to take each observation and organize them into shared patterns and behaviors to identify developed insights and needs.
Users seek to have a convenient booking process
Users commit to a destination before they move forward with plans
Users seek to immerse themselves at their destination
Users seek to bond with group through experiences
Users need to book travel conveniently
Users need to select a destination to begin planning
Users need a way to plan local activities
Users need to plan experiences with their group
Personas help designers take a humanistic approach to design by establishing an idea of someone to design for. From the observations gathered through interviews and insights from the empathy map, I created Emory, a persona constructed from research findings. Emory helps guide design decisions by keeping her in mind.
Goal: Organize information architecture and map user journey
Process: Card Sorting, Sitemap, Task Flow, User Flow
I conducted an online card sort with 5 participants. The card sort consisted of 30 destinations offered by Zeit. Participants were told to group destinations in any pattern they deem fit to understand how users organize information and content.
Locations were the most common grouping, and 3 out of 5 people sorted by continent or country.
The card sorting results determined that destinations should be organized by location, which was consistent within the industry. However, competitors typically offer another form of organization: experiences. Experiences such as art, food and music are common themes that people search for in travel. With this information, I organized Zeit's proposed pages into a sitemap to provide a structure for content.
The user flow is an expansion of the task flow with multiple tasks. I mapped out Emory's path through four different entry points and the tasks of browsing a trip, saving a trip, and purchasing a trip. The user flow helps me further understand successes, barriers and context to achieve a task.
Goal: Design branding and user interface
Process: Sketches, Mid-Fidelity Wireframes, Brand Guide
To craft Zeit's brand identity, I defined the core characteristics of the company to be represented: Luxurious - Futuristic - Majestic -Bold
I then created a moodboard using Pinterest, to gather visual references for their logo design, color palette, typography and UI. The brand provides a cohesive visual direction for the Zeit experience. View the full brand guide here.
Goal: Build an interactive example of the responsive website
Process: High-Fidelity Wireframes and Prototype
To transform the wireframes into a functional prototype, I uploaded the high-fidelity wireframe into InVision, where I could create an interactive version of the website with limited functionality.
Test the prototype by:
Booking a trip to Thailand
Goal: Evaluate viability of solutions through testing and feedback
Process: Usability Test, Affinity Map, Revisions
To determine if the website is usable, I set 3 tasks for 5 participants to complete in the InVision prototype. I observed their patterns and behavior through screen recording, video recording, and taking notes.
Evaluate effort level of user to complete tasks
Identify areas of difficulty and confusion
Identify behavior patterns of users to complete tasks
Filter both Asia and Culture to find a specific trip
Save a trip to view later
Successfully book a trip to Thailand
Taking observations from the usability test, I created an affinity map to organize thoughts and behaviors to create insights based on developed patterns. Recommendations for revisions are based on these insights.
The most difficult task for participants was to save a trip
Participants felt that "Culture" was too broad as a grouping
Increase visibility of the save function by revising the icon or change placement
Revise wording of "Culture"
Research is Key. Effective design isn't about being flashy or different. It's designing what works. My biggest takeaway from this project is to design with research in mind. I could've saved numerous hours by sticking with the research, but got sidetracked by over-investing time into a specific UI element. Research provides the key foundation I need to design with.
There's a First for Everything. As my first UX/UI design project, I learned the ropes through trial and error...mostly errors. My goal in this was to fail often and as fast as possible. I learned the fundamentals of UX design through this project, and mistakes I'll be mindful to not make again.
Continue Usability Testing- Continue to identify areas of improvement through testing
Developer Handoff- Fine tune UI elements and hand designs to the development team