LYST – Simplifying the homefeed to drive user engagement


Project Info

LYST – Simplifying the homefeed to drive user engagement
Who they are:
LYST is a London-based fashion platform (app and web), where users can shop all the internet’s fashion in one place.
The LYST app discovery feed is intended to establish LYST as a fashion authority through engaging fashion content. Despite investing heavily in an editorial team, automated content such as ‘new in your brands’ drives 60% of engagement in-feed, whereas editorials drive 40%. The team believe this is due to the way editorial content is displayed, which does provides little freedom to content creators in the way they show a story to users.
How might we create a flexible content format that also drives engagement (content + product saves & product page views)?
Research methods:
Moderated user testing, affinity mapping, data analysis, unmoderated user testing
Figma, User Testing, Zoom, Miro

Set project goals

Setting a research plan 🗺️

Upon joining the LYST discovery squad, my first task was to redo the editorial content format of the home feed. The old content format frustrated LYST editors due to its limitations - which allowed for a single image for editorial stories, and a small area for copy. Editors desired a new way to display the product and media they uploaded.

While addressing the frustrations of our internal editors is important, I wanted to turn to the users first - the people engaging (and not engaging) with the editorial content.  

Research Goal: We want to understand how users would like to see our content feed improved. Through understanding this, we can guage if the user’s desires for our app align with the solutions we want to design.

Research Question: How do customers interact with our discovery feed content, and what aspects (if any) of the presentation do they feel could be improved?

Evaluate current experience

Moderated testing 🧑🏫

To evaluate the current experience, I ran moderated tests with 8 users. Through asking questions in real time, I could observe users interacting with the live app in as natural of a way as possible.

Scenario: “You’ve downloaded a fashion app called LYST, and you want to see what it’s about.”

Task: “Download the LYST app, and browse as you usually would.”

Through testing we learned 🧠

After gathering research, I shared the findings with my product manager. We concluded that addressing content overwhelm first would make the most sense, as the LYST 50 is a smaller piece of a bigger problem.

Workshopping ✏️

To generate ideas on reducing content overwhelm, I lead a workshop with our editorial team and the rest of my squad. Amongst seven people, we brainstormed solutions, and each participant had three dot votes to highlight ideas they felt we should pursue. Of the many generated, the below drove the greatest interest.

Key ideas 💡

1. Declutter design

How might we make the page less cluttered, or remove unnecessary features / elements?  

2. Keep it relevant

How might we ensure that we are accurately personalizing content to users?

3. Incorporate more imagery

How might we incorporate more imagery and unique ways to display content?

Design process

Competitor research 🔎

Before determining how to address these concerns, I turned to popular apps our users stated regularly using in our research screener. With decluttering, relevancy and imagery in mind, I took note of common themes.

Key themes 🔑  

1. Strategic use of colour

Competitors utilized grey text alongside black to soften the feel of the page, and highlight the most important parts for the user to look at.

2. Clean editorial imagery

Competitors chose bold and clear photography, often taking up full-width of the page.

3. Generous white space

Competitors utilized white space confidently, allowing titles, imagery and pieces of content to receive appropriate emphasis.

4. Clear and consistent product imagery

Product photography in the home feed is formatted as consistently as possible featuring minimal text.

Early designs and results 💭🧪

The wins…

✔️The new content format received positive qualitative feedback in the customer reviews channel and across the business.

✔️Quantitative data indicated that users were scrolling further within each piece of content, and spending more time in the app on the whole.

Room for improvement…

❌ Users were not engaging with the shop now button. Once a user became ‘active’ , engagement with the feature decreased by 50%.

❌ 0.5% of users were engaging with the content saving feature.

High fidelity designs 🎨

While the team loved that users were spending more time in the app, we knew a lot of work was still needed. To address the issues of lacking engagement with our save icon and shop now, we decided to reflect on our initial problem - users feeling overwhelmed.

How might we make content saving more obvious? 💾
How might we make “shoppability” more obvious? 🛍️

From asking these questions, we realized that another round of user testing, and pairing back the experience in a more extreme way, would be crucial to understanding what our users needed to engage with our app.

Additional testing 🗒️

Through testing the in-app experience with our users, we found that…

Determining changes ⚙️

To address these issues, we knew that…

✔️ We need to make the icon more obvious

✔️ We needed to change the placement of the content saving icon

✔️ We needed to change the content saving icon itself

How I achieved my goals

Reflection 🪞

While this project is currently ongoing, reflecting on the extent to which you have achieved your goals is important as further iterations of the feature are developed.

Research Goal: We want to understand how users would like to see our content feed improved. Through understanding this, we can guage if the user’s desires for our app align with the solutions we want to design.

How we achieved our goal so far:

✔️ We found the clear problem:  with our content feed - user overwhelm

✔️ We know what our users desire: a cleaner experience that reflects that of competitor apps they love

✔️ We are already experiencing positive feedback from both internal stakeholders and real users

Next steps

What do we do now? ❓

✔️ Further testing in-app and with users (ongoing)

✔️ Adding capability to follow contributors and editors  

✔️Adding new media types such as GIFS and video

Impact 🚀

After this work was shipped it resulted in...

  • A boost in average saved on homepage by 15% per user
  • Users deeming the overhaul a "vast improvement"
  • Green-light from product to lean more into artistic story-telling (large images and products, less text)