BarHopper App

A mobile app that helps people find bars, find a happy hour and socialise with friends.

My Role

Wire-framing, Storyboard, Prototyping, Personas, Sketching, Competitive Analysis

Tools Used

Sketch, Invision, Anima Timeline, Anima Prototyping

The Problem

According to a research I executed, I concluded that people visiting bars are not aware if

1. a bar has a happy hour
2. when the happy hour is happening

Not only that but they find it difficult to find a bar when searching on google or on social media. There is no platform just dedicated to bars. 

Design Overview

Barhopper is an app for users who would like to find bars easily, and all the necessary information related to bars all under one app. The in-app features are fun such as the happy hour feature, social activity such as inviting friends to the bar you are currently in which also helps in socialising.

1. Explore Bars

The app can provide bars recommendations based on users’ preference or filters chosen. One example: Bars near me, Bars with an active happy hour etc. The users can also search bars by name which is a standard features.

2. Happy hour Indicator

Apart from the standard bar details such as address and phone, a happy hour section is presented to the user. When it is green a blinking transitions happens, showing the user that it is active. A countdown is also present to show the user how long the happy hour window will last.

The user can also choose another day to see when the happy hour starts during that specific day.

Design Process

In order to identify if this product was worth building, as well as what it needed to accomplish, I started out by assembling a focus group of target users. After sifting through all of their feature requests, I was able to understand and identify various key points: they wanted a fast and easy way to find a happy hour and also invite their friends. Although I knew that the app could grow to be something much larger and more robust, I focused on creating an MVP that met the user’s core need.

I identified the key specs that had to be included in the app in order to build the MVP, then mapped out user flows based on those specs.

Research

After deciding my focused design approach, I conducted one-on-one interviews with 3 friends, which I know that they go to bars often. I asked them certain questions to identify their pain points. Three takeaways came out from these interviews.

  • Happy hour information can be found nowhere
  • An app dedicated to bars is non existing
  • Finding a bar is time consuming with the current options

Competitive Analysis

I took a careful look at existing solutions within my context and analyzed their pros and cons in respect to supporting my target activity.

What did I learn?

  • Current solutions focus only on the basic information of a bar
  • Filters related to bars is non existing. E.g. Non-alcoholic drinks, platters
  • No way to invite friends within the platform

The logo

After doing some research and creating a moodboard for the logo, first I started sketching some ideas on a piece of paper. After that I decided 3 logos out of the ideas I had and checked what works and looks best. Due the name being barhopper, I wanted to add a bouncing feeling to the logo. I started off by using cartoonish characters holding a bottle of beverage. My last idea was based in designing a funny character who is sober and happy.

Lo-Fi designs

Hi-Fi Design

The objective of the interface was to keep the app fun, easy and unique. This was accomplished by using fun and summery colours, a cool and funny logo.

For the happy hour part, I could design it as a common table with days and times of when the happy hour is going to take place, but instead i created a sliding feature with some engagement into it. When the happy hour is active, the circle will turn green with a countdown showing how long you have remaining until the happy hour ends (user engagement).

Outcome

The app idea was well received within possible early users. I kept on running a landing page collecting emails before and after the whole process was finished while running some facebook ads. While it has not yet been released, I have collected over 300 emails in just over a month.

As a result of this experience, I learned that when designing a product for a new environment, bringing in real users of this upcoming app in an early stage, really helps things to go smoothly down the line.

I also learned that every product should be released in the right time and moment. Although bars are frequently visited during the whole year, the boom happens during summer. Heat + bar happy hour = more cool cocktails to drink = more fun.