The users shall be able to send welcome gifts to their new neighbors in the community in order to facilitate the ever-longing first interaction.
In today's world, we are socially isolated and the sense of a community has depleted with the newer generations have moved away from the idea of physical interactions. People, when they move into a new neighborhood, feel unwelcomed since the neighbors simply don't care, while it is really important to create an environment to help everyone thrive.
The desk research revealed ongoing explorations of this problem. We are so busy with our bustling routines and tech that while we miss the physical interactions, it's really hard for us to connect with our neighbors. To dive down a little, I conducted some quick surveys on Instagram to get a more generic point of view on this problem. One of the basic issues people faced was trusting their neighbors because we don’t really know who we are talking to.
Employing product thinking, the obvious solution for a product was to have an application for moderated communities instead of an open-to-all app. Trust building features were the key and to build trust, it is important to have the best first impression in order to make new friends or socialize. A community-based social app can be designed to solve these problems where the users can interact with their neighbors, first online then continue their interactions offline. Carpooling, community events, garage sales, education sessions, help centers, and other community-related events. The problems enlisted in the phase before were explored to ideate for solutions.
One of the features included in the product seeks to welcome new neighbors in a community. The residents can choose to send a welcome gift to their new neighbors to make them feel at home and at the same time initiate an interaction that can be converted into a physical one.
The aforementioned use case was designed and interaction was prototyped which helped us fulfill the goal. The user shall be prompted when a new neighbor joins the neighborhood if they have enabled that specific alert. a guided interaction allows the user to see who joined. The user can select the gift(s) they like to send. They can select from bundles to single gifts along with suggestions from the product itself depending on the new neighbor’s interests that they select while signing up. Just a few clicks and et voila, the first impression has been set. Taking inspiration from Anton Skvortsov, a custom packing interaction was designed as well as feedback to make it more human.
The prototype was tested on a real device to understand any pain points throughout the use case. A few adjustments were made to the layout to make it easier to use. Some design decisions were revised to place some CTAs in a more thumb-reachable area.
When tested with real users, the interaction turned out to be delightful especially the box packing animation which proves the importance of more human visual design.