Restaurant reservation apps are really popular. Gone are the days of calling and making appointments or reservations because now everyone expects everything, even simple tasks, to be done instantly with the click of a button. However what if you need privacy in a corner seat for a special date or need the central table for making a great announcement?
In restaurants, it’s difficult to get the exact seating arrangement for what you’ve planned.
With a graphical restaurant reservation app, people can choose their desired seats or tables and book them for a specific time.
I started off the project by defining a research plan by setting out initial thoughts on goals, methodologies, participants and timeline.
I conducted 5 remote interviews and 9 online surveys about restaurant booking habits. Based on the target audience research, I interviewed participants who live in metropolitan areas and travel often domestically and internationally for business and personal vacations.
QUOTE FROM PARTICIPANT #3
" When looking for a restaurant, I trust more the number of reviews than the actual rating. "
I started defining the main focus of the project by analyzing the user and business goals combined with technical considerations. I wanted to have different points of view to gain a more comprehensive idea of the objectives.
Based on the research findings, Francis has been defined as the primary persona that would represent the user archetype for future decision making and the development of the design.
The creation of a sitemap was fundamental for the development of the app. That allowed a more comprehensive and clear organization of the content.
I started empathizing with Francis by creating a task to understand how he would book a table at a restaurant through the app.
Then I defined a few scenarios to see how he would interact with the app: reserving a last minute table, booking a restaurant for a special occasion, joining a waitlist, and getting recommendations based on his preferences.
Once the key elements to design were defined, I began sketching the pages of the website and translating them later into wireframes.
The wireframes were designed to build the architecture of the app and to analyze the hierarchy of the content that I wanted to display based on my findings.
I conducted concept testing on 3 options of the logo and the home screen (magenta, orange and red). I asked which option resonates more with food. 21 people participated in the testing.
I decided then to develop the red range of colors for the brand identity of the app.
I had a group session with 10 participants where I showed the low-fidelity design to observe reactions and gather feedback before starting the final design:
Tablee wants to be a classy, bold and friendly brand. The red color palette helps to draw attention to the product and to spark appetite.
All the visual explorations of colors, moods, and styles are expressed in the final responsive design.
Once the prototype was ready, I conducted a usability testing with a group of 10 participants. I asked them to complete a few tasks on the prototype I created in Figma. I wanted to observe how users interacted with and navigated the app.
I implemented the prototype based on the usability testing findings:
It was really interesting to notice an increase in the number of restaurant apps with a growing trend to implementing technologies such as AR/VR.
Users need the booking experience to be more personalized: from the choice of a table to getting recommendations based on their preferences.
The future of restaurants will definitely include also menu mapping with machine learning implementation as well and AR menus that will allow an even smoother and dynamic experience.