Sojo Ramen opened its first restaurant in Las Vegas in 2019. Their vision is to expand their business throughout the states as a chain restaurant; the next step was taken when they recently opened their second restaurant in California.
However, the number of visitors dropped due to the pandemic and all restaurants began to heavily rely on third-party delivery apps with large charges.
As a small restaurant with a low budget, Sojo Ramen decided not to use these delivery apps and save on the fees.
The story of Sojo Ramen inspired me to create a local restaurant app with a no-delivery option but to attract customers with better benefits.
In this project, there are two major challenges: 1) the app is only for a local restaurant and 2) it doesn’t offer delivery, which is the most convenient feature during pandemics.
Also, its target audience is mainly comprised of locals separated into two groups: new and regular customers.
To clarify the requirements, I listed the goals and constraints of the app and observed the business goals and challenges.
The primary goal of the app is to purchase ramen for takeout. However, Sojo Ramen needs value propositions to convince customers to use the Sojo Ramen app and order takeout instead of delivery. What kinds of values can the Sojo Ramen app deliver to their customers?
I conceptualized ideas by starting with Sprint Questions and reversing the problems into questions, then responding to these with How Might We questions to find solutions.
Remembering that Sojo Ramen frequently offered food discounts to customers, I decided to focus on promotions and rewards - app-exclusive deals for new customers and a reward membership program for regular customers. For Sojo Ramen’s numerous options to customize the orders, the clear delivery of the content was considered first as part of the usability goals.
When creating new features for a better user experience, it is important to implement the features without interrupting the task flows in achieving the primary goal.
So, I began with a customer map to visualize the process of purchasing ramen - the primary goal - and decided where to place the new features. How Might We questions were included to track why the features were added.
Although the main features are promotions and the reward program, more ideas were required to design the details of interactions and the interface for the app. Once I brainstormed the ideas, I used MoSCoW and Impact/Effect Matrix to prioritize and verify the ideas, as well as whether or not I should keep them while checking the minimum viable product (MVP) for the app.
During the process, I went through the removal and addition of ideas to finalize them and check whether they support both the value proposition and MVP. I then structured the contents of the app based on the final ideas.
Based on the app structure I came up with, I started to design low-fidelity wireframes of the overall layouts for the app.
I consistently checked the user flows and revised the interaction and interface of the app, such as removing unnecessary steps or adjusting the app features.
I then rearranged the customer map for the final version and checked the task flow of the app.