Songkick: UX Case Study

 

 
 

Background

Songkick provides a platform for music lovers to track their favorite artists on tour, buy tickets and to discover concerts nearby. With over 15 million users worldwide, their goal is to make sure fans never miss another show or festival.

As an avid concert goer myself I wanted to take a closer look at Songkick’s iOS app to discover any pain points or areas of friction. 

Objective

Utilize guerilla testing to identify where users struggled within the app.

Design and test solutions that could improve overall usability.

Disclaimer: I do not work for, nor am I affiliated with Songkick. This was an exploratory case study purely for the sake of learning more about user research and design.
 
 

TL;DR

I focused on making simple changes that would benefit both the user and the business. Through validation testing, here are the 3 solutions that improved usability:

 
 
Outcomes.png
 
 

Design Process

Here’s an overview of the approach to my end-to-end process:

 
 
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User Research

Guerilla Usability Testing

I conducted guerilla interviews with 6 participants and asked them to complete a series of tasks. 4 out of the 6 users already heard of or have used Songkick in some capacity, mostly on desktop. All of them said they had attended at least a few concerts in the past year. I wanted to make sure that the people I was handing the app over to had an interest in music somewhat.

guerilla testing.png

The main tasks:

  • Find one of your favorite artists and track them.
  • Buy a ticket to one of their shows (just made users go to ticket screen)
  • Explore some concerts that are near you.
  • Discover some new music you might be interested in.
  • Change your location and look for concerts in that area.
 
 

Empathize

Who am I designing for?

Before analyzing my interviews, I created a provisional persona to help me empathize with the typical Songkick user. I based their behaviors and goals off some of the people I interviewed and my own assumptions that I wanted to validate at the end of the process. 

 
 
Persona.png
 
 

Synthesize

Identify Pain Points

After the interviews I went back on my observations and feedback from my participants to identify common points of friction they would encounter while interacting with the app. Below are recurring issues that frustrated or confused the users:

 
  • Unclear where the buy ticket button was
  • Users didn’t like having to scroll through a whole list to find a tour date near them
  • “Wish there was more info or media on the artist page”
  • Users wanted a sample of music or access to it
  • Most users were unsuccessful in finding the setting to change location
 
 
Guerilla Testing Users.png
 I organized all pain points into an affinity map to visualize where users felt most duress.

I organized all pain points into an affinity map to visualize where users felt most duress.

 
 

Analysis: Prioritize and Define

In order to identify which problems were worth solving, I plotted them onto a 2x2 matrix aligned by what would be the most important to the user and to Songkick in terms of their business goals.

 
 
Impact Graph.png
 
 
  1. I prioritized users being unable to find the correct link to buy tickets as the most pressing for both parties.
  2. Only 1 out 6 participants were able to figure out where to see concerts in their location. They also struggled to find how to change/add locations. 
  3. Users continually pointed out the lack of information on the artist pages. They delved into how it would be hard to really discover any new music within the app. 
 
 

Ideate

UI Sketches

With the main issues identified I began sketching out possible solutions to implement into the UI

 
 
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Lo-Fi Wireframes

Here are the 4 main screens I felt would have the most impact with a redesign or quick tweak. 

 
Lofi Wireframes SS.png
 
 

Prototype & Validation

Prototype before:after.png
 

Clickable Prototype

 

 
 
 

Validation

 
After Validation.png
 
 

Final Thoughts

This case study was definitely a challenge but gratifying in that I achieved the learning goals I set out in the beginning. During the research process, I realized just how much bias could sway what I thought were points of friction. What looks nonsensical to me could look easy to someone else. Ideating my own solutions also uncovered other problems I hadn’t seen, especially having to design for mobile. However I believe that the most creative ways to solve a problem are born out of having constraints in the first place. Thanks for reading.

 

 

concert hero.png