ESPN • MOBILE SITE REDESIGN
A consulting project coordinated through the NYC Media Lab, I worked with a team of Pratt Institute students to improve ESPN's mobile viewing experience through a process of research, design, and assessment. ESPN wanted to improve the mobile video experience on ESPN.com, with the ultimate goal of getting sports fans to “press play.”
UX Research, UX Design
The project began with the research phase, in which we aimed to find out more about the current experience with ESPN.com on mobile devices and how can it be improved. Our methodology spanned for techniques:
- Diary Study: What is the current experience of watching mobile videos on ESPN.com?
7 participants recorded their experiences over 7 days resulting in 46 total responses
- Interviews: How do users interact with video on a mobile platform?
- 11 interviews were completed to further drill down into the experience of the ESPN.com mobile user
- Questionnaire: What are the mobile video preferences of sports fans?
- 98 participants answered 14 questions about mobile video preferences of sports fans; open for 9 days
- Competitive Analysis: How do other sports sites present video content?
- 6 competitors were examined for account creation, personalization, content categorization and organization, and ad display.
Our findings shaped our persona development, resulting in 5 archetypes of ESPN users:
Insights gleaned from the research phase fed back into an iterative cycle of creation as we developed and refined prototypes that offered potential solutions to user pain points:
- Too much content → Filtering system gives users what they want without logging in
- Tabs are rarely used → Move to a single feed display
- Content is disorganized → Cleaner display with distinct sections
- Video content is unclear → Descriptive tags, improved metadata, and prominent headlines
- Ads feel disruptive → Clarify ad time & use metadata to make better matches
Through design critiques and usability testing a final prototype was created, keeping user preferences in mind. Using a screen capture software we created a simulated user flow with our refined prototype.
We presented the final prototype as well as our research findings to an audience of 20 ESPN executives who are involved with mobile video strategy at ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol, CT.
We concluded with final thoughts for ESPN to consider for improving the user experience of mobile users:
- How can ESPN lower the barrier to personalization so people will utilize those features?
- How can ESPN help people navigate through the information without making them feel overwhelmed or lost?
- How can ESPN incorporate users’ changing needs and expectations into its product development and design processes?