Renote

Renote is a web app, where you can save links, store your favorite images and write notes. It aims to simplify the organization of saved content and improve your workflow. It's like replacing your browser’s bookmarking feature. For this personal project, I designed a simple dashboard and an alternative to bookmarking what you love.

Research

Surveys & User Interviews

I decided to survey 25 random people. Learning that notetakers used Evernote, Bear, or Apple Notes for personal or business related reasons. Moreover, 95% of them save items for future reference. With the majority using Pinterest, Facebook, or their browser as tools. To save items, they'd bookmark or download an item to send it to themselves.

From the completed 25 surveys, I interviewed 6 of them. From that, I created personas that represent user needs in relation to each tier. The three pricing tiers for Renote - expert, casual, and free. Then noted some pain-points as:

  1. Bookmarks are unmanageable.
  2. Too many different apps to store their content.
  3. Tracking/remembering their content is time-consuming.

I wanted to understand the users more, so I took my learnings and tried to make valid assumptions. I hypothesized that users want to organize and work faster. But, for them it's about exploring, learning, and improving on their ideas.

DEFINE

Understanding the Problem

Saving and bookmarking content can be unmanageable and forgetful. Not mentioning lack of storage and collaboration. Pinterest is a good option, but it's only visual. Not including there is social media influence, ads from companies and overall outside noise. When saving, we utilize multiple different platforms. It's too much and is a constant back and forth process.

DESIGN

Flows and Wireframes

Then, I summarized the research into short and simple user stories as such:

  1. FREE: Susan is an aspiring author, who wants to organize bookmarks and quickly create notes for current and future personal use.
  2. CASUAL: Owen is a freelance photographer that wants online storage for his and others photography, allowing for easy access, and learning to improve his craft.
  3. EXPERT: Luna is a designer that wants to organize, collaborate, plus save her thoughts or content to expand her knowledge and prepare for future projects.

From that, I created user flows focusing more on how users would navigate the app, gathering an understanding how they could save and what main tasks are used. This was more about building an MVP. It was balance between what's needed for the app to function and what's nice to have.

DESIGN

Visual Language

I kept the visual design relatively simple. Utilizing type and icons as ways of communication and using minimal color. I ended up taking inspiration from Pinterest, Bear, and others. It's meant to produce the environment of the app as a familiar location for users, yet remaining unique. Users can feel comfortable and experience a fresh perspective on saving and organizing their content.

Execution

Result

For a prototype: Click Here

With all the above, I began to design. I executed to create a simple process in which you can save/bookmark the content seen in your browser. As well as, a simple dashboard where users would have space to save, organize, and add collaborators to view their content. I did a quick hallway test with 10 people and saw good results with users having a 90% success rate of adding content.

What I Learned

In summary, I was refreshed and satisfied with the results. I intended to build this as an MVP, only allowing what was needed. Though, it'd be nice to explore a mobile app version of this and examine how much more a user's workflow would evolve or simplify.