The publishing industry is broken. Publishing companies are making assumptions about what to publish and don’t have the information about how their books are performing in social media, and what readers think about them.
We knew that there was a lot of information that they were missing, and needed a tool that allowed them to know what was going on across social media and within the reviews that readers left within channels, such as Amazon and Goodreads.
The challenge was to help publishers gain a deeper understanding of the market and what readers are interested in and what they think, so publishers can make informed decisions based on the data.
As we needed to ship a Minimum Viable Product to start acquiring feedback from real users, we tried to simplify the user flow so users could get to the report page, which was the most importat page to reach as quickly as possible.
Having cleared the main user flow, I started sketching the screens and paying closer attention to information architecture* and on-page flows. This is when some of the ideas regarding how to make the user experience even easier, started to emerge.
As the main goal was to drive users to the report page, the home page featured recent searches from other users so new visitors could take a shortcut and go straight to the book report, if they didn’t know which book to search for, or found one interesting in the "latest books searched" listing.
The report page took more time to design than the other pages, as we created multiple iterations of the design based on user feedback.
Once we were confident with the sketches and showed them to some users we were ready to start wireframing. When wireframing it’s important to have all the team on the same page as well as effectively create documentation for the developers.
The feedback received on our first MVP was positive, but it was time to go a bit further and make the product more robust and usable. After some thought, feedback reviews and brainstorming sessions we came up with three new pieces of functionality
We knew and some users suggested that it would be nice to add more context and see the book’s evolution over time.
I came up with the idea of having collections, as a way to group and organize your book reports, so users didn’t have to search for specific books every time.
The Activity page was intended as a handy way of keeping track of your books’ activity, so users could detect any relevant changes.
In light of all of the improvements and new pieces of functionality outlined above, the product clearly needed a new approach and a visual revamp. All these new ideas were synthesised into a prototype.