RETHINKING PYNK

UX/UI Project
An innovative fin-tech start-up that combines the wisdom of crowds (WOC) phenomenon with AI to make better investments, Pynk lacked a proper user-experience, which was costing them vital users and sound investments.

Overview

HOW ARE YOU SPELLING ‘PINK’ BTW?

Haemorrhaging users, Pynk came to us to solve a problem with what they believed to be their website's aesthetic. Our research soon uncovered the real culprit, and after we had convinced the Pynk team with our findings, the app and its poorly communicated value proposition became our focus.

To solve their user retention problem in the one-month timeframe we had, my team and I ideated quickly and tested often using Agile to keep us on track. In the end, we created a high fidelity prototype that was developed and is now live at Pynk.io.

PROJECT TIMELINE

Oct - Nov 2019

ROLE + RESPONSIBILITY

UX/UI designer - research and interviews, synthesis and artefact creation, ideation and concept testing, low to high-fi prototyping, user testing and dev handover.

TEAM + TOOLS

Casey Abergel (UX),  Daryl Slavin (UI)
Sim Barot (PM)
Axure | Figma

The Problem

Below is an image that perfectly represents one of the main problems that Pynk were experiencing. Lots of data, but no context - the Pynk team came to us wanting to ‘re-brand’ and ‘re-style’ their marketing site, which they believed would fix the 50.6% drop-off rate their app was experiencing. With only a month to crack the problem, we needed a reliable way to find a robust solution - one that preferably included time to sleep.

The Solution

To conduct our research, synthesise the results and design a solution in that time, my team and I stuck fanatically to our Agile board. We worked as leanly as possible, constantly prioritising and re-prioritising tasks, briefing the client, talking to users and testing, testing, testing. Without lots of time to finesse everything, the process was quick and dirty. However, a steady flow of users meant we had a reliable north star guiding us throughout the project.

Discovery

IDENTIFYING THE ISSUE

We wanted to come prepared to our first face-to-face with Pynk. So, we undertook a rapid initial discovery phase involving desk-based research, a heuristic evaluation, a comp analysis and a lot of initial user testing.

What we found confused the hell out of us. Their marketing site made it seem like Pynk was a cryptocurrency investment platform that combined a phenomenon called Wisdom of Crowds (WOC) with AI. Which, it is.

But when our testers booted up the app, they were lost. “What is this app trying to do?” and “how do I become a millionaire already?” were questions that they (and we) found ourselves asking, over and over.

MEETING PYNK

After meeting Pynk things came into sharp relief. They needed their users to log in daily and make predictions, in exchange for wisdom points. The better your predictions, the more wisdom points you earn.

The more wisdom points you earn, the more shares you will own. This was their strategy for keeping a steady flow of data going into their Rose AI, a clever machine learning tool that would (hopefully) speculate accurately on volatile commodities.

It was now time to start making sense of everything we had gathered...

Synthesis

CONNECTING THE DOTS

It was after our initial conversation with Pynk that we were put in contact with their users. In the end, we interviewed and tested over 20 Pynk users from around the world - some as far away as Australia and Ghana.

Whilst this presented logistical challenges each conversation gave us more valuable insights. Our next challenge was then condensing everything we had learned, and tightening the scope of the project.

Not long into our affinity mapping session, we started seeing patterns repeat themselves, confirming our collective design hunches - which were three key problems.


Key problems

1

A simple Lack of things to do

2

Confusing site navigation

3

Unclear value proposition

CREATING THE ARTEFACTS

Since the Pynk team weren’t familiar with the design process, and for our own benefit, we needed to translate what we had learnt into personas, journey maps and problem statements so we could advance into the ideation and design phases with everyone on the same page. Our research pointed to two key users or personas - the middle-aged investor (the majority of Pynk’s current users) and the tech-savvy millennial (Pynk’s target audience).

“Well off middle-aged men who see the potential of cryptocurrency, want a low-risk, fun but also educational way to make smarter AI-driven investment decisions, however, feel cryptocurrency is too risky and volatile to make for a safe, long-term investment.”
“Tech-savvy millennials who have some disposable income want a better way to invest their money, helping them get on the property ladder and into ethical investment projects so they can create a better future for the next generation, but they don’t trust banks whose traditional ROI is too low.”

Manuel kelly

Cory Hadley

Ideation

THE COGS START TURNING

With our problems and personas clearly defined we set to work ideating, using crazy 8s to generate as many ideas (good and bad) as possible - Pynk had to be engaging, easy to navigate and its value clearly demonstrable for both new and old users alike.

Since we each had some fairly clear ideas, we decided to run this exercise to explore some of the less conventional concepts, so we wouldn’t just get stuck on our initial ideas. Ultimately we created four concepts, which we turned into concept cards for further testing and feedback from Pynk.

These four concepts were: a dashboard; onboarding; reminders; and a bit of gamification.

Concept Cards

"I think the onboarding is going to be so important, speaking as a new user"

1st

“Dashboard looks a bit busy, but having the community in one place would be amazing”

2nd

"I'm very competitive so gamification is a great idea"

3rd

4th

“Reminders would kill it for me, being constantly hassled”

Mid fidelity wireframes

With the concepts prioritised we created some low-to-mid fidelity wireframes in Axure, in part due to Pynk’s use of web app technology. Although most of their users interacted with the app via mobile browsers, several users and the stakeholders expressed interest in a desktop version, and Axure could do responsive prototypes. As I was the only one familiar with Axure we couldn’t work fast enough, which is why we opted for the more collaborative Figma.

TESTING AND ITERATING

To ensure we stayed on the right track, we tested our designs with 12 users and non-users. We gave our testers four tasks to complete, each one testing a specific feature that we tracked and tabulated.

Our results were generally positive, with only minor changes being made to 3 of the 4 features. Gamification was a different matter, with 9 of 12 users failing the task because it was buried within the ‘chat’ function.

Taking on board the feedback and after discussing with the Pynk team, we iterated, bringing the ‘Prediction Challenge’ feature onto the dashboard. For round two, 100% of the tasks were completed successfully.

Final design & handoff

GETTING USERS ONBOARD

To get users acquainted with Pynk, we designed an onboarding process that succinctly explained how and why a user should use the app, with GIF animations to provide a visual aid throughout.

INCENTIVISING USERS TO STAY

If we were to encourage users to remain within the app there needed to be more to do. Our designs achieved this by including gamification features as well as their already very lively ‘Pynk community’ into one place.

GETTING USERS INVOLVED

Using gamification we engaged and delighted users, who we knew liked to take small risks and were highly competitive. Not only did this increase the app’s stickiness but it had the added benefit of alluring newer users too.

GIVING USERS THE TOOLS

A fairly major feature of the customer portal, the ability to report and track incidents, simply didn’t work. This was essential for managers and heads of security, which is why we tore it down and started from scratch to make it as streamlined as possible.

HANDING OFF TO PYNK

When we presented our final designs to Pynk they were delighted with the work we had done. I walked them through the presentation and the prototype which went down very well (please see the image below). Pynk took our designs forward, developing them and getting their new solution live, which we continued to work with them on in a piecemeal fashion until early 2020 when Pynk 2.0 emerged.